Personal practical knowledge of international faculty: A case study

Bahar Cemre, Karaağaçlı
In the context of internationalization, international faculty are considered among stakeholders in higher education. These instructors’ cognition about teaching reflects over the classroom and the institution through their personal practical knowledge embodied by past experiences, current awareness, and future expectations. Their cognition also shapes and is shaped within sociocultural venues. In this regard, this case study was designed to explore personal practical knowledge of five English language instructors working at the Department of Foreign Languages of a Turkish foundation university. Their personal practical knowledge was examined with four constructs. These were narrative unity, images, cycles, and rhythms. In addition, the extracurricular activities generated and supported by these instructors were scrutinized with reference to Cultural Historical Activity Theory. In line with the theory, students attending the clubs, coordinators, and international teaching assistants also participated in the study. Data were collected in one academic term with semi-structured interviews, focus group interviews, observations, and reflections on documents. Data analysis was carried out with a three-tiered method. Upon examining narrative unity, images, rhythms, and cycles, teaching philosophies as a moral component of personal practical knowledge was found to be externalized through the preferred classroom practices. Besides, teacher learning actualized with mediation was found to embody the instructors’ personal practical knowledge. Their knowledge was also seen to be influential in informing their practices in the classrooms and the clubs. As non-formal curricular settings developed with personal practical knowledge, these extracurricular activities provided affordances for intercultural reflections among students and instructors within the department.


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Citation Formats
K. Bahar Cemre, “Personal practical knowledge of international faculty: A case study,” M.A. - Master of Arts, Middle East Technical University, 2021.