Becoming aware: A study of student teachers' personal and professional values
Student teachers’ personal and professional values have received passing attention in the educational literature, despite assertions that their values influence their perceptions, pedagogical decisions and actions. This study explores the professional learning of a sample of secondary student teachers. It aims to understand the role played by their personal and professional values while they participate in a year-long initial teacher education programme. Framed by social constructivist and interpretivist theory, this qualitative study uses semi-structured interviews and journal entries to capture the perspectives of five secondary student teachers about their learning-to-teach experiences. Constant comparative data analysis methods are used to reveal patterns of themes within and across the five case studies. Findings from the research reveal that personal and professional values underpin the learning and teacher identity of student teachers in the sample. They are influenced by values and experiences in their families and communities, and their core values are behind their sense of purpose, awareness and resilience. Findings reveal how professional values and structures at play in school organisations conflict or align with their own personal and professional values and impact on their commitment to the profession. The research shows that student teachers vary in the opportunities they are afforded in university and school environments to participate in critical dialogue in communities of practice that develop their self-awareness, acquisition of professional values and understanding of their contexts. The study concludes by proposing a model of personal and professional learning that aims to develop student teachers’ critical reflection and awareness of the impact of their personal and professional values when learning to teach.
Advisor: Notman, Ross; Morrison , Hugh
Degree Name: Doctor of Education
Degree Discipline: University or Otago College of Education
Publisher: University of Otago
Keywords: student teachers; learning; personal; professional; values; context; processes; agency; community of practice; model; initial teacher education
Research Type: Thesis