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ERIC Number: ED533370
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 235
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1249-1594-4
Understanding Language to Support Equitable Teaching: How Beginning English Teachers Engage Complexity, Negotiate Dilemmas, and Avoid Deficit Ideologies
McBee Orzulak, Melinda J.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Michigan
This qualitative study provides illustrations embedded in case studies of four focal preservice English teachers and illuminates how they negotiated dilemmas related to linguistically informed principles (LIP) and folk beliefs about language (FBL). The study addresses gaps in what researchers know about how to support new teachers as they negotiate understandings about language from their coursework, pre-existing beliefs, field experiences and ongoing practice. By describing the complex phenomenon of preservice teachers' engagement with LIP--and the dilemmas related to enacting these LIP--this study offers a starting place for designing experiences and assessments that provide intersections among language-related domains, such as the teaching of writing, language study, and culturally responsive classroom interactions. Focusing on preservice English teachers' dilemmas in practice, this study's results include over twenty contextualized illustrations of preservice teachers' classroom interactions, generated from a 1 1/2 year study that followed prospective teachers from coursework into student teaching. Drawing on case study methodology, the study incorporated qualitative and discourse analytic methods to establish dense description of the phenomenon of preservice teachers' negotiation of the conflicts between LIP and FBL. These methods included prolonged engagement with participants, a semi-structured interview protocol, focused observation, and key artifacts of participants' written work. Results describe language-related dilemmas in English language arts classrooms and linguistic and discourse analytic concepts that grounded participants' responses to these dilemmas. The illustrations exemplify how participants engaged with LIP that enabled them to resist deficit ideologies in their interactions and ways of talking with and about students; how participants responded to unexpected moments of language complexity; and how they negotiated language-related dilemmas, engaging with standard language ideologies and obstacles to discussing language and race in relation to power. Pointing to future possibilities for addressing the complexity of teaching situations, this dissertation calls for teacher preparation to provide new teachers with flexible, adaptable approaches to engaging with linguistic principles in their teaching. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A