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Who am I? Deconstructing the Emotional Experiences of Novice Teachers’ Identity Construction


Who am I? Deconstructing the Emotional Experiences of Novice Teachers’ Identity Construction

Kingsley, Sarah (2015) Who am I? Deconstructing the Emotional Experiences of Novice Teachers’ Identity Construction. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Kingsley_MA_S2016.pdf - Accepted Version


The rising rate of teacher attrition within the first five years of entry into the profession has initiated inquiries of new educators’ working conditions, perspectives, and identities (Beauchamp & Thomas, 2009; Conway, 2006; Jalongo & Heider, 2006; Ruohotie-Lyhty, 2013; Scherff, 2008). This qualitative study considers an area that is relatively unexplored, that is, the connection between emotions and identity, by examining one central question: How are emotions embedded in the identity construction of novice teachers? Two participants were involved in this investigation over the course of their first year of teaching. They engaged in exploratory discussions in three focus group interviews during which they shared personal accounts and individual perspectives. They also produced three written reflections, which allowed them to explore their experiences more introspectively. Findings from this study support the existing literature in two areas: firstly, the workplace acted as a site for fulfillment and vulnerability, and secondly, contextual factors affected both emotions and identities (Beauchamp & Thomas, 2009; Nias, 1996; Rippon & Martin, 2006; Ruohotie-Lyhty, 2013). However, contrary to the work of Schutz and Lee (2014) and Zembylas (2005), emotions and identity did not have a reciprocal relationship. Emotions informed the identities of both participants, but their identities did not inform their emotions. With negative emotions being reported 1.5 times as often as positive emotions, these findings raise concerns about the emotional preparedness of novice teachers. The results from this study suggest the need to address emotional preparedness in university teacher education programs and to integrate emotional awareness and coping strategies into induction models.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Education
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Kingsley, Sarah
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Child Studies
Date:21 December 2015
Thesis Supervisor(s):Chang-Kredl, Sandra
ID Code:980777
Deposited On:02 Jun 2016 15:30
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:51
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