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ERIC Number: EJ911200
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jan
Pages: 18
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1741-1432
Agency and Female Teachers' Career Decisions: A Life History Study of 40 Women
Smith, Joan
Educational Management Administration & Leadership, v39 n1 p7-24 Jan 2011
This article reports on some of the findings of a wider, life history study on the factors affecting the career decisions of 40 female secondary school teachers in England. By using life history interviews, it was possible to gain rich and nuanced insights into the complexity of factors influencing women's career decisions. While acknowledging the reality of constraints on women's lives and options, this article focuses on the women's perceptions of their own agency in their approach to career. A typology of career approaches is presented. I argue that women's awareness of their own potential for agency, and how they choose to exert it, are key considerations in understanding female teachers' career trajectories. I conclude that there is a need to move beyond an analysis in which the existence of barriers to progression is taken as a given and assumed to be a major career-shaping force, to an analysis that affords scope for taking into account the multifarious ways in which women exert their agency in the career context, making conscious and positive choices which may be at odds with traditional, hierarchical notions of career. (Contains 3 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)