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The Negotiated Self

Employing Reflexive Inquiry to Explore Teacher Identity

Edited by Ellyn Lyle

Teacher identity resides in the foundational beliefs and assumptions educators have about teaching and learning. These beliefs and assumptions develop both inside and outside of the classroom, blurring the lines between the professional and the personal. Examining the development of teacher identity at this intersection requires a unique reflexive capacity.

Reflexive inquiry is both established and continually emerging. At its most basic, reflexivity refers to researchers’ consciousness of their role in and effect on both the act of doing research and arriving at research findings. In making central the role of the researcher in the research process, reflexive inquiry interrogates agency while examining philosophical notions about the nature of knowledge.

While advancements have been made in investigating the relationship between teacher knowledge and teacher practice, the research often fails to connect this meaning with self-knowledge and issues of identity. Through a consideration of these tenets, the authors in this collection embrace critical, qualitative, creative, and arts-integrated approaches to examine ways that reflexive inquiry supports studies in teacher identity. Moving between theory and lived experience, the authors individually and collectively lay bare teacher identity as negotiated while evidencing the epistemological merits of reflexive inquiry.