Curriculum Reform and Iranian EFL Teachers' Professional Identity: A Marathon of Change!

Document Type : Research Paper

Authors

1 Department of English, Shahrekord Branch, Islamic Azad University, Shahrekord, Iran

2 Department of English Language, Faculty of Foreign Languages, University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran

3 English Department, Faculty of Foreign Languages, University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran

10.22034/elt.2021.42087.2294

Abstract

Professional identity has been perpetually an underlying factor in teacher development. The maintenance of a strong professional identity is a key factor in teacher development which is ultimately a fundamental aspect in the prosperity or failure of any educational system. As a dynamic phenomenon, teachers’ professional identity can be influenced by a variety of factors and particularly any type of educational reform. The present study with an explanatory mixed method design was used to investigate transitions in Iranian EFL teachers’ professional identity in the context of Fundamental Reform Document of Education (2012). For the quantitative phase of the study, a researcher-made questionnaire developed based on the four components of professional identity namely, self-image, self-esteem, job motivation and task perception proposed by Kelchtermans (1993) was distributed among 98 Iranian EFL teachers. Considering the ongoing nature of the professional identity, the questionnaire was assigned to the teachers during the pre-reform and post – reform era. In the qualitative phase, in order to capture a comprehensive picture of the salient factors of teachers’ professional identity and their underlying reasons, a set of semi-structured interviews with 7 volunteer teachers were conducted. The findings revealed that the introduction of the curriculum reform made no change in teachers’ professional identity in terms of self-esteem and task perception, but it slightly affected teachers’ self-image and job motivation. The findings also revealed a potential transition path in Iranian EFL teachers’ professional identity development. Finally, some implications for policy-makers and material developers and suggestions for future researchers were discussed.

Keywords


Article Title [فارسی]

تحولات سیستم آموزشی و هویت حرفه ای معلمان زبان انگلیسی ایران: یک ماراتن تغییر

Authors [فارسی]

  • پریسا ریاحی پور 1
  • منصور توکلی 2
  • عباس اسلامی راسخ 3
1 استادیار گروه انگلیسی، واحد شهرکرد، دانشگاه آزاد اسلامی، شهرکرد، ایران.
2 استاد گروه زبان انگلیسی، دانشکده زبانهای خارجی، دانشگاه اصفهان
3 دانشیار گروه زبان انگلیسی، دانشکده زبانهای خارجی، دانشگاه اصفهان، اصفهان، ایران.
Abstract [فارسی]

هویت حرفه ای همواره یک عامل مهم در پیشرفت حرفه ای معلمان بوده است. حفظ و اتخاذ یک هویت حرفه ای، عامل مهم درموفقیت یا عدم موفقیت یک سیستم آموزشی می باشد. به عنوان یک پدیده پویا، هویت حرفه ای معلمان می تواند تحت تاثیر عوامل مختلف و خصوصا هر گونه تحول آموزشی قرار گیرد. تحقیق حاضربا استفاده از طرح توصیفی متوالی به بررسی تغییرات حاصل از تحول سیستم آموزشی ایران در هویت حرفه ای معلمان زبان انگلیسی پرداخته است. برای مرحله کمی مطالعه ، یک پرسشنامه محقق ساخته بر اساس چهارمولفه هویت حرفه ای یعنی تصویر از خود، عزت نفس،انگیزش شغلی و درک وظیفه ارایه شده توسط Kelchtermans(1993) تهیه شده و بین 98 معلم زبان انگلیسی توزیع شد. با توجه به ماهیت متغیر هویت حرفه ای، پرسشنامه دو دوره قبل و بعد از تغییرات سیستم آموزشی را مورد بررسی قرار داد. در مرحله کیفی به منظور کسب تصویری از عوامل برجسته هویت حرفه ای معلمان و دلایل اصلی آنها، مجموعه ای از مصاحبه با7 معلم داوطلب انجام شد. یافته های تحقیق بیانگر آن بود که ارایه برنامه تغییرات درسی تغییری در عزت نفس و درک وظیفه معلمان ایجاد نکرده، اما تاثیر اندکی بر انگیزش شغلی آنان داشته است. این یافته ها همچنین یک مسیر رشد هویت حرفه ای را در معلمان نشان داده اند. سرانجام، برخی از پیامدهای مربوط به سیاست گزاران و توسعه دهندگان مطالب درسی برای محققان آینده مورد بررسی قرار گرفتند.

Keywords [فارسی]

  • هویت حرفه ای
  • تحول آموزشی
  • روش ترکیبی
  • کمی
  • کیفی
Atai, M. R., & Mazlum, F. (2013). English language teaching curriculum in Iran: Planning and practice. The Curriculum Journal, 24(3), 389–411.
Behin,B. Esmaeili,F.& Asadollahi,R. (2019).  An English Teacher’s Professional Identity Development: The Effect of Educational Policies.Journal of Modern Research in English Language Studies.28(3), 19-44.
Beijaard, D., P.C. Meijer, & N. Verloop (2004). Reconsidering research on teachers’  professional identity. Teaching and Teacher Education, 20, pp. 107–128.
Canrinus, E.T., Helms-Lorenz, M., Beijaard, D., Buitink, J., & Hofman, A. (2011). Profiling teachers’ sense of professional identity. Educational Studies, 37(5), 593–608.
Coldron, J., & Smith, R. (1999). Active location in teachers’ construction of their professional identities. Journal of Curriculum Studies, 31(6), 711–726.
Creswell, J. W., Planko Clark, V. L., Gutmann, M. L., & Hanson, W. E. (2003). Handbook of mixed methods in social and behavioral research. Advanced mixed methods research design. Thousand oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Creswell, J. W., & Planko Clark, V. L. (2011). Designing and conducting mixed methods research (2nd ed.). Thousand oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Day, C., Kington, A., Stobart, G., & Sammons, P. (2006). The personal and professional selves of teachers: Stable and unstable identities. British Educational Research Journal, 32(4), 601–616.
Day, C., & Kington, A. (2008). Identity, well-being and effectiveness: The emotional contexts of teaching. Pedagogy, Culture and Society, 16(1), 7–23.
Do¨rnyei, Z. (2007). Research methods in applied linguistics: Quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methodologies. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Eslamdoost, S. King,  , K, A & Tajeddin, Z. (2019). Professional Identity Conflict and (Re)Construction among English Teachers in Iran. Journal of Language, Identity & Education
Fundamental Reform Document of Education (FRDE) in the Islamic Republic of Iran (2011).Ministry of Education of the Islamic Republic of Iran (In Persian). Available online at: http://dca.razaviedu.ir/files/posts/24364.pdf.
Gee, J. P. (2001). Identity as an analytic lens for research in education. In W. G. Secada (Ed.), Review of research in education, Vol. 25 (pp. 99–125). Washington, DC: American Educational Research Association.
Goodson, I. F., & Cole, A. L. (1994). Exploring the teacher’s professional knowledge: Constructing identity and community. Teacher Education Quarterly, 21(1), 85–105.
Hargreaves, A. (2001). The emotional geographies of teaching. Teachers College Record, 103(6), pp. 1056–1080.
Kegan, R. (1994) In over our heads. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Kerby, A. (1991). Narrative and the self. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.
Kheirabadi, R., & AlaviMoghaddam, S. B. (2014). New horizons in teaching English in Iran: A transition from reading- based methods to communicative ones by English for schools’ series, International Journal of Language Learning and Applied Linguistics World, 5 (4), 225-232.
Knowles, G. J. (1992). Models for understanding pre-service and beginning teachers’ biographies: Illustrations from case studies. In I. F. Goodson (Ed.), Studying teachers’ lives
(pp. 99–152). London: Routledge.
Lasky, S. (2005). A sociocultural approach to understanding teacher identity, agency and professional vulnerability in a context of secondary school reform. Teaching and Teacher Education, 21(8), 899–916.
Lee, J.C , Huang,Y.X, Law, E.H., & Wang, M.H. (2013). Professional identities and emotions of teachers in the context of curriculum reform: a Chinese perspective. Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education. 41(3), 271–287.
Mahmoudi-Gahrouei, V., Tavakoli, M. & Hammam, D. (2014). Understanding what is possible across a career: professional identity development beyond transition to teaching. Asia Pacific Education Review , 17(4) , 581-597.
Marzano, R.J., Waters, T., & McNulty, B.A. (2005). School leadership that works: From research to results. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
Naidoo, M.(2012). Teachers Identity and Practice in the Context of Curriculum. Unpublished dissertation. University of KwaZulu-Natal: Pietermaritzburg School of Education.
O’Sullivan, K. (2008).Seeking the self: professional identity and the teaching of English.
Journal of the Arts, English and Literacy Education Research Network, 1(1), 44-54.
Reynolds, C. (1996). Cultural scripts for teachers: Identities and their relation to workplace landscapes. In M. Kompf, W. R. Bond, D. Dworet, & R. T. Boak (Eds.), Changing research and practice: Teachers’ professionalism, identities and knowledge (pp. 69–77). London, Washington, DC: The Falmer Press.
Rodgers, C. R., & Scott, K. H. (2008). The development of the personal self and professional identity in learning to teach. In M. Cochran-Smith, S. Feiman-Nemser.
Safari, P., & Sahragard,R.(2015). Iranian EFL teachers’ challenges with the new ELT program after the reform: From dream to reality. Khasar Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences, 18 (4), 65-78.
Sfard, A. & A. Prusak (2005). Telling identities: in search of an analytic tool for investigating learning as a culturally shaped activity. Educational Researcher, 34(4), pp. 14–22.
Sheybani,M and Miri,F.(2019).The relationship between EFL teachers’professional identity and their critical thinking: A structural equation modeling approach. Cognitive Sciences and Neurosciences Research Article,
Tickle, L. (2000). Teacher induction: The way ahead. Buckingham, Philadelphia: Open University Press.
Van Veen, K., & Sleegers, P. (2009).Teachers’ emotions in a context of reforms: To a deeper understanding of teachers and reforms. In P.A. Schutz & M. Zembylas (Eds.), Advances in teacher emotion research: The impact on teachers’ lives (pp. 233–251). Dordrecht: Springer.
Kelchtermans, G. (1993).Getting the story, understanding the lives: From career stories to teachers’ professional development. Teaching and Teacher Education, 9 (5), pp.443-456. 
Volkmann, M. J., & Anderson, M. A. (1998). Creating professional identity: Dilemmas and metaphors of a first-year chemistry teacher. Science Education, 82(3), 293–310.
Zare-eea, A. , Ghasedib, F. (2014).  Professional Identity Construction Issues in Becoming an English Teacher. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 98(6), 1991-1995.
Yaghobinejad, H., Zarrinabadi, N., & Nejadansari, D. (2016). Culture-specificity of teacher demotivation: Iranian junior high school teachers caught in the newly-introduced CLT trap. Teachers and teaching, Theory and Practice, 23(2), 127-140
Zarrianabadi, N, & Mahmoudi-Gahrouei, V. (2017). English in contemporary Iran. Asian Englishes, 20(1), 81-94.