ERIC Number: ED265147
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Jun
Reference Count: 0
Role Over Person: Legitimacy and Authenticity in Teaching. Occasional Paper No. 87.
This paper discusses competing norms for justifying teacher decisions, their effects on productivity and legitimacy in teaching, and the teaching profession as a moral and learning community. Drawing on philosophical analyses and studies of elementary and secondary schools, teacher preparation, staff development, and the adoption of innovations, it argues that personal orientations (centering on personal habits, interests, and opinions) remove teacher decisions from the realm of criteria for judging appropriateness. Personal reasons have explanatory value; they carry less weight when justifying professional action. Role orientation involves references to larger, organized contexts, including the disciplines of knowledge, group purposes, and societal issues. Attention to the teaching role is particularly important in American education where structural features (e.g., recruitment, induction, rewards) and the ethos of the profession converge in presentism, conservatism, and individualism. These tendencies are reinforced by typical workplace conditions. Teacher isolation and the lack of shared experiences and a common language make it difficult to develop role orientation. Practices in teacher preparation and staff development stressing the personal, even idiosyncratic, element in teaching are therefore problematic and ought to be abandoned. Instead, teacher educators should attempt to develop and support role orientation as a disposition. A 47-item reference list is appended. (Author/LR)
Descriptors: Decision Making, Elementary Secondary Education, Personal Autonomy, Role Perception, Teacher Characteristics, Teacher Role, Teaching Conditions, Teaching (Occupation)
Institute for Research on Teaching, College of Education, MSU, 252 Erickson Hall, East Lansing, MI 48824 ($3.00).
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Michigan State Univ., East Lansing. Inst. for Research on Teaching.