University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Birth, Death and Survival: Exploring Pre-service Teacher Identity and How To Think Differently About Teacher Education Using the Work of Hannah Arendt

McKerr, Linzi (2019) Birth, Death and Survival: Exploring Pre-service Teacher Identity and How To Think Differently About Teacher Education Using the Work of Hannah Arendt. In: Teacher Education Policy in Europe (TEPE): Quality Teachers, and Quality Teacher Education: Research, Policy and Practice, 16th - 18th May 2019, Krakow, Poland. (Unpublished)

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This presentation is the result of a doctoral research project into preservice teacher identity development on a one-year university based teacher education route. In English education system, concerns have been raised about many aspects of impacting preservice teachers during the PGCE and beyond: a neo- liberal, market-driven education system; high levels of performativity and accountability within the teaching profession, and the lack of attention to the process of identity formation within teacher education.
This study brings an Arendtian philosophical framework to offer preservice teaches an opportunity to think about themselves, and the influences that act upon their professional identity, in a new way. As a result of this research, it is intended that preservice teachers will be better able to deal with the challenges that face them as beginning teachers, and the teacher education Will embed identity development as an evolving process in their programmes.
This study is situated within a theoretically in reached empirical approach that uses Arendt’s ‘conditions’ that are related to the concepts of birth, death, survival, worldliness, plurality and self-development. This qualitative research gathered data from three pre-service teachers as they ‘became’ teachers. Over the period of their PGCE year, this included an online introductory life story to gather insights into their awareness of teacher identity, a semi-structured interview to explore preservice teachers’ awareness of their developing teacher identity, and a critical incident interview, reflecting on episodes that impacted on how they viewed themselves as teachers.

The outcomes of this study are that preservice teachers felt that the research methodology Americans become more aware of, and interrogate their identity; the Arendtian framework was an ‘identifier’ that denoted the depth of emotion, the impact of events ceased during teaching experience, and how they successfully resolved these issues. Arendt’s ‘conditions’ were interpreted slightly differently by each preservice teacher but, combined with the critical incident timeline, acted as a driver for an emergent, dialogical and relational approach to preservice teacher identity.

This presentation calls for reform of teacher education; by moving away from ‘machinised’ and neo-liberal education, we can begin to reconsider the value of education in itself. In taking such a stance, it allows teacher education to move forward philosophically and places the preservice teacher at the heart of it.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: education, pre-service teacher identity, teacher education, Arendtian framework, Hannah Arendt
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Divisions: College of Arts, Humanities and Education > School of Education
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Dr Linzi McKerr
Date Deposited: 22 May 2019 09:07
Last Modified: 17 Jun 2020 17:29

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