A Narrative inquiry into early career English language teacher identities

Taşdemir, Hanife
This narrative inquiry aims to investigate the professional identities of early career English language teachers in the Turkish state school context. It explores the ways language teacher identities are constructed through personal histories and professional experiences in learning communities. The early career English language teachers’ views regarding teaching, teachers, students, and the language and the affective dimension of their job are examined. The study additionally looks into the influences of the social, institutional, and political environments on maintaining and (re)negotiation of the language teacher identities. In order to achieve these aims, semi-structured individual interviews with 11 teachers in the candidature process were conducted. The data were analyzed adopting a multiphase content analysis method. The findings revealed that there were several identity stabilizers for the early career English language teachers such as the fascination with subject and the job, caring for students and the relationships with them and the former teachers. It was seen that personal histories informed language teacher identities and learning how to teach was mainly built around either practice or the observations of it. Teacher agency was enacted on varying levels to attain alignment between imagined and actual identities in the emotionally complex process of identity (re)negotiation including vulnerability along with high levels of satisfaction. Although collegial and administrative support were acknowledged, rare opportunities of legitimate participation and job socialization were reported. The macro and meso level contextual concerns permeated ideals at all levels. This study offers implications for a sustainable identity-oriented and needs-based induction program.


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Citation Formats
H. Taşdemir, “A Narrative inquiry into early career English language teacher identities,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2021.