ERIC Number: ED366001
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Dec
Reference Count: N/A
What Is Literature? Two Preservice Teachers' Conceptions of Literature and of the Teaching of Literature.
Fox, Dana L.
A case study examined two preservice teachers' attitudes about literature and the teaching of literature, and examined whether a "Teaching of Literature" course for secondary English education majors influenced their attitudes. Data included in-depth, semi-structured interviews, participant observation, written artifacts (learning logs, portfolios, etc.) and the researcher's ongoing, reflective log. One subject enrolled in the program after a short career as a business executive in a major computing firm. He began the course wanting to learn "techniques" for teaching literature in secondary English classrooms and was uncomfortable with the response-centered literature curriculum presented in the course. Throughout the course, he persistently questioned the purposes of literature for what he called "non-English majors." Neither his conceptions of literature nor his attitudes towards students changed as a result of his experiences in the course. Unlike the first subject, the second subject (a member of a minority group) willingly struggled in the course to make sense of his previous encounters with literature and gradually began to view literature and the teaching of literature in new and powerful ways. The course offered the second subject a chance to develop his own voice as a future teacher. Findings suggest that teacher educators: (1) must become models of the kind of teaching they encourage; (2) should provide opportunities for prospective teachers to identify and examine their beliefs; and (3) should realize that their good intentions do not guarantee results. (Contains 38 references.)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: English Teachers
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Reading Conference (43rd, Charleston, SC, December 1-4, 1993).