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Education & Language | Constructing New Professional Identities - Career Changers in Teacher Education

Constructing New Professional Identities

Career Changers in Teacher Education

Williams, Judy

2013

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  • This book provides a unique insight into the learning experiences of career change professionals in teacher education. Many studies have provided a brief glimpse into the experiences of people making a career change into teaching, but this book offers an in-depth analysis of the day to day struggles and triumphs of a small group of career change students studying teacher education in Australia.
This book provides a unique insight into the learning experiences of career change professionals in teacher education. Many studies have provided a brief glimpse into the experiences of people making a career change into teaching, but this book offers an in-depth analysis of the day to day struggles and triumphs of a small group of career change students studying teacher education in Australia. This study locates teacher professional learning within a sociocultural research paradigm, highlighting the importance of social, cultural and institutional contexts in learning. Learning to become a teacher is not merely the acquisition of a set of technical skills and propositional knowledge, but a far more complex personal struggle to construct a new professional identity. This book uncovers some of the trials, tribulations and joys of becoming a teacher for those who have already worked in other careers. It examines the impact of previous career experiences on the construction of a new professional identity as a teacher. This process is discussed using the conceptual framework of learning within communities of practice. Firstly, a broad-brush picture is presented through analysis and discussion of extensive quantitative data obtained via an on-line survey, after which a small group of survey respondents provide a more nuanced exploration of their experiences as student teachers. This is followed by three case studies that delve more deeply into the experiences, frustrations and joys of being an ‘expert novice’ in teacher education. These case studies examine the stories of three career changers who provide personal insights into what it is like to be an experienced professional embarking on a new journey as a novice student teacher.

Content Level » Research

Keywords » career change - communities of practice - teacher education - teacher professional learning

Related subjects » Education & Language

Table of contents 

List of Tables; Acknowledgements; Introduction; 1. Researching Career Changers in Teaching; Why Research Career Change Student Teachers?; A Personal Stance: My Own Career Trajectory; A Philosophical Stance: An Ethic of Care; A Pedagogical Stance: Respecting Experience in Learning; Aims of the Book; Outline of the Book; 2. Career Change Professionals in Teaching; Non-School Leaver Entry into Teaching; Recruitment of Quality Teachers; Attracting Career Changers into Teaching; Implications for Teacher Education; The Research Project; Research Questions; Methodology; Data Collection; Data Analysis and Interpretation; 3. Identity and Learning Within Communities of Practice; What is Identity?; Personal Identity; Multiple Identities; Construction of a Career Identity; Developing a Student Teacher Professional Identity; The Infl uence of Biography in Teacher Professional Learning; Sociocultural Infl uences on Teacher Professional Learning; Learning and Identity Construction Through Participation in Communities of Practice; Communities of Practice; A Social Theory of Learning; Practice and Meaning; Practice and Identity; Boundaries and Multimembership; 4. Making a Career Change into Teaching; Why do People Change Careers?; Theoretical Understandings of Career Change; Why Choose Teaching as a Career?; Mature Aged Students in Higher Education; Career Change Students in Teacher Education; 5. Career Changers in Teacher Education; Who are They?; Why are They Here?; Reasons for Wanting a Career Change; ‘Other’ Reasons for Wanting a Career Change; Motivations to Teach; Where Have They Come From?; Other Career Fields; What do They Bring to Teaching?; What is It Like to Be a Career Change Student in Teacher Education?; Rewards; Challenges; Conclusions; 6. Listening to The Voices of Career Changers in Teacher Education; Career Backgrounds; Motivations to Change Careers into Teaching; Desire for Personal Growth and Development; Personal Circumstances; Dissatisfaction with Previous Career; Career Changers’ Experiences in Teacher Education; Application of Previous Skills and Experiences; Teaching Practicum; Social Relationships; Logistical Issues and Impact on Personal Relationships; What did the Interviews Reveal about Career Change Student Teachers?; 7. Case Studies - Patrick, Michelle and Bill; Case Study 1: Patrick; The Expert Old-Timer; The Novice Student Teacher;Case Study 2: Michelle; The Expert Old-Timer; The Novice Student Teacher; Case Study 3: Bill; The Expert Old-Timer; The Novice Student Teacher; Conclusions; 8. Understanding Career Changers in Teacher Education; Why do People Change Careers, and Why do They Choose Teaching?; What are the Career Backgrounds of People Who Change Careers into Teaching, and What Attributes do They Bring to Teaching?; How do Career Changers Experience Teacher Education?; How do Career Change Students Construct New Professional Identities as Student Teachers?; Implications for Teacher Education; Transition and Orientation Programs; Pastoral Care and Support; Curriculum and Pedagogy; Learning Through Research; My Personal Learning Journey Continues; Postscript; References.

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