ERIC Number: ED467762
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2002-Apr
Novice Teachers' Case Dilemmas: Surprising Perspectives Related to Diversity.
Mastrilli, Thomas; Sardo-Brown, Deborah; Hinson, Stephanie
This study described novice teachers' case dilemmas, analyzing them for assumptions made by teachers about teaching and learning as well as for solutions to the dilemmas. Twenty-one of the thirty-six dilemmas emphasized either minority students, students of low socioeconomic status, or students from single-parent households. Among the issues described in the dilemmas were de facto segregation of learning disabled students, retention decisions, social skills problems, family members other than parents raising the children, possible child abuse, absenteeism, and difficulty communicating with parents. Several written cases contained statements suggesting that teachers possessed differential expectations regarding the academic performance of these students as well as differential expectations concerning the nature of support provided by their parents. Analysis of the cases suggested that these novice teachers would benefit from the opportunity to re-examine their assumptions concerning diverse students. In addition, exposure to culturally relevant teaching techniques and strategies for improving parental communication would be beneficial. A survey given after the writing and discussion of the cases indicated that teachers found the process worthwhile in terms of providing catharsis, gaining multiple perspectives regarding possible solutions for dilemmas, and recognizing unfounded assumptions they made about non-Caucasian students. (Contains 20 references.) (Author/SM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New Orleans, LA, April 1-5, 2002).