Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Doctor of Education

Major

Teaching-Learning Processes

Date of Defense

8-5-2015

Graduate Advisor

Kim H Song, Ed.D

Committee

Wolfgang Altolph

Alina Slapac

Jacqueline Lewis-Harris

Abstract

This multiple case study explores the effect of two Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) courses on four preservice teachers’ (PSTs) emerging teaching identities. The inquiry was guided by a theoretical framework informed by TESOL content, for example Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP), and context, identity and sociocultural theory. Participants reflected on the impact of their prior experiences as students and TESOL coursework on their fledgling identities through individual interviews and assignments in the TESOL Methods course. Other corroborating data collected include classroom observations and unit plans. Two levels of data analysis were used: (1) first cycle coding (Saldaña, 2013), utilizing values coding (Gable & Wolf, 1993; LeCompte & Preissle, 1993; Saldaña, 2013) and descriptive coding (Miles & Huberman, 1994; Saldaña, 2003; Wolcott, 1994) and (2) second cycle coding (Saldaña, 2013) using focused coding (Saldaña, 2013; Charmaz, 2006) informed by three of Gee’s (2014b) building tools: Identity, Figured Worlds and “Big D” Discourse. The results of the study revealed that the four participants’ previous and current experiences as students have greatly impacted their burgeoning teaching identities. As a result of the TESOL Methods course, all four have developed a TESOL Toolkit/Toolbelt that set them apart from other teacher candidates and inservice teachers, prompting three of the four to position themselves as both more capable of working with English learners and other diverse learners. Findings from this study will contribute to research on PSTs’ identity and the role of TESOL courses on their attitudes, beliefs and pedagogies when instructing linguistically and culturally diverse students.

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