An exploration of the epistemic dimension of preservice teachers' identity

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Adam, R 2012, 'An exploration of the epistemic dimension of preservice teachers' identity', The Online Journal of New Horizons in Education, vol. 2, no. 2.

Article available on Open Access

Peer Reviewed



This paper identifies and illustrates binary epistemic dynamics influencing the construction of preservice teachers pedagogical identity. An exploratory pilot study was used to explore epistemic change and constancy in preservice teachers (n = 19) identity across five binary constructs (e.g., nature/nurture) used to structure an introductory subject in a Graduate Diploma of Education. The study revealed instances of dynamic interactivity between structure and content influencing participants tendency to polarise, depolarise, neutralise, relativise, and correlate binary constructs. Some of these dynamics problematise epistemological theories which propose linear development between absolutist, multiplist, and evaluativist ways of knowing (Tabak & Weinstock, 2008). The study offers tentative support for incorporating epistemic pedagogies in preservice teacher education courses and expanding the dialogue over the direction and metaphor of development used to construct teachers epistemic identity.

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