Investigation of Sense-making of New Teachers with Prior Professional Experience (SCT) in Switzerland: an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis

Weinmann, Christine (2022) Investigation of Sense-making of New Teachers with Prior Professional Experience (SCT) in Switzerland: an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. PhD thesis, University of Gloucestershire. doi:10.46289/AR23QR55

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12267 Weinmann, C. (2022) Investigation_of_Sense_Making_of_New_Teachers_with_Prior_Professional_Experience_(SCT)_in_Switzerland_An_Interpretative_Phenomenological_Analysis.pdf - Accepted Version
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This research sought to investigate the lived experiences of new teachers with prior professional occupational experience (also referred to as second-career teachers – SCT). This was within the context of a growing phenomenon – the prolonged and projected teacher shortage in Switzerland (SRF news, 2021). The objective was to increase psychological and sociological understanding of the meaning-making of SCTs, to add to interdisciplinary knowledge to conceptualise the phenomenon, and give voice to the experienced impact of the SCT phenomenon. Through the findings, I present an in-depth, idiographic analysis of the lived experiences of SCTs. Four superordinate themes were identified: ‘Directing career transformation’, ‘Making amendments to the self’, ‘Accentuating social professional support’, and ‘Implications of career transformation’. The findings suggest that participants adapted to becoming SCTs by learning in four primary ways: about their new roles; from their teaching experiences at the new workplace; from others (pupils, practitioners); and contextualising their previous professional experience. Due to those learning experiences, participants were able to reflect on how they directed their careers, highlighting what it meant to them and further constructing their career narrative. Therefore, the four superordinate themes are connected by the notion of an epic – of transforming the self by adapting to the role as teacher and teaching in a school and by narrating the meaning thereof. This research makes three original contributions to understanding the SCT phenomenon: • contributing empirical evidence on the growing SCT phenomenon in Switzerland; • applying an interdisciplinary perspective and conceptualising the phenomenon as transformation underpinned by a constructivist philosophy; and • methodological contributions including a meta-narrative analysis and employing IPA as a research philosophy and methodology. I discuss various implications for practice and research. I conclude that those who are involved in SCT career pathways (including SCTs themselves) ought to be aware of the need for SCTs to personalise their career further. Therefore, these needs can be considered in designing relevant career pathways to ensure long-term, sustainable careers in teaching to effectively respond to the aforementioned teacher shortages.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Advisors:
Thesis AdvisorEmailURL
Uncontrolled Keywords: Second career teacher; Transformation; Occupational identity; Learning; IPA
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1603 Secondary Education. High schools
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > Gloucestershire Business School
Depositing User: Susan Turner
Date Deposited: 18 Jan 2023 11:53
Last Modified: 19 Jan 2023 14:58

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