Title page for ETD etd-04252005-161844

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Hale, Kimberly Danielle
URN etd-04252005-161844
Title Identity Formation and the Development of Self in Early Career Teachers
Degree PhD
Department Human Development
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Barksdale, Mary Alice Committee Chair
Magliaro, Susan G. Committee Member
Niles, Jerome A. Committee Member
Sawyers, Janet K. Committee Member
  • personal dimension of teaching
  • teacher identity
  • teacher development
  • emotions of teaching
Date of Defense 2005-04-21
Availability unrestricted
Many aspects of teaching involve the personal dimension of teaching and yet this dimension is often neglected and overlooked as we prepare teachers and sustain teachers in their work. The personal beliefs, attitudes and emotions of teachers often determine the decisions that teachers make in their classrooms. Increasingly, educational researchers have found that effective teachers are aware of this dimension. The aim of this study was to better understand how teachers' self perceptions and understandings of teaching evolve and change across their professional lives and what events contribute to these understandings. A series of in-depth individual interviews were conducted with six early career public education teachers who were also alumni of the graduate teacher education program at Virginia Tech. Interview data were supplemented with a review of artifacts from preservice teacher education program, visual representations of teacher identity development at various stages over the career of teaching and a timeline of significant events encountered during the teaching career. Results of this research suggest that teachers' understandings of the multiple complexities of teaching deepen within the first years of teaching; teaching is emotional work; and the context of teaching heavily influences teachers' practice of teaching regardless of their beliefs about teaching. Suggestions for university teacher education programs and local school districts are discussed.
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