Mediating the Mists of Teacher Autonomy
(English)In: Cambridge Journal of Education, ISSN 0305-764X, E-ISSN 1469-3577Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
In this paper I present analyses from case studies of six English teachers of primary mathematics. Drawing on multiple interviews and observations, constant comparison analyses identified four dimensions of belief and practice that dichotomised informants into two groups of three. One group, belief consonant teachers, presented a coherent set of beliefs commensurate with current perspectives on mathematics teaching that resonated closely with their practice. The other group, belief dissonant teachers, espoused similar beliefs but enacted a behavioural practice incommensurate with those beliefs. However, all teachers, against various criteria, would have been construed as autonomous, highlighting the limitations of autonomy as an evaluative construct. To address this problematic I discuss the construct of mediation and show how belief consonant teachers are able to mediate their professional contexts in ways that allow them to successfully accommodate their privileged beliefs, while belief dissonant teachers allow their contexts to mediate their beliefs and practice.
teacher autonomy, teacher mediation, primary mathematics
Research subject Education
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-110548OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-110548DiVA: diva2:772342