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Intervention studies in teacher identity research in Turkey: We need more!

Conference contribution
Authors Nur Akkus-Cakir
Ali Yildirim
Published in Paper presented at 10th International Conference on Curriculum and Instruction, 2019, Ankara
Publisher Ankara University
Place of publication Ankara
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Pedagogical, Curricular and Professional Studies
Language en
Keywords Teacher education, Teacher identity, Intervention studies
Subject categories Pedagogical Work


Teacher identity (TI) has been a central theme in teaching research for a long time (Beauchamp&Thomas, 2009). As a framework, it recognizes both the socio-cultural and individual aspects of identity formation, and attracts attention towards various factors affecting teaching practice (Olsen, 2014) as well as the design of teaching and learning in the classroom (Alspup,2004; Beijaard, Meijer&Verloop, 2004). The importance of TI development has been revealed by many studies in the literature (Freese, 2006; Olsen,2014; Sachs,2001). Gaining a complete understanding of the factors affecting TI development is of paramount importance for both pre-service and in-service teacher training (Beauchamp&Thomas, 2009). When related work in educational research is examined, it can be seen that the focus is on defining TI, what constitutes it and how it develops (Beijaard et al., 2004). In particular, existing TI literature generally focuses on the effects of reflective activities, context and previous experiences on TI development (Izadinia,2013). There has been a call for studies that focus on the TI formation ‘process’ itself to better capture its dynamic nature (Beijaard et al., 2004). The current research on TI development in Turkey mostly focuses on professional identity formation (e.g.Akkoç&Yeşildere İmre, 2017; Arslan, 2018), the characteristics of professional identity (e.g.Atmaca, 2017; Alptekin Yolcu, 2018), and the representation of professional identity through teachers’ stories (Güngör, 2017; Yaylı,2017). When examined in detail, one can gain further insights regarding thefactors affecting TI development, the general characteristics of TI, andthe context in which it develops. However, only afew (4) of these studies are intervention studies that actually designed an intervention to support the development of TI and evaluated the results of the intervention. In educational research, there is a pressing need for rigorous design experiments to evaluate educational interventions to be used as a basis for change in educational policy and practice. Intervention studies are useful in terms of evaluating the effects of particular strategies used (Slavin, 2010). Existing work has already provided important findings about possible factors that contribute to the development of TI. We believe it is also important to design interventions depending on those findings and see what works, what does not and why. Therefore, having a close analysis of these studies can help researchers see how these interventions are designed, conducted, and what is found as a result in the end. It will also make it possible to determine the effectiveness of these interventions which can be instrumental in designing future interventions. This study aims to present a review of intervention studies conducted in TI research in Turkey. We aim to understand how the interventions to support TI development were designed methodologically, and to identify to what extent and in what ways they were effective. We aim to investigate how the results of these interventions can be used to improve research and practice in TI in Turkey. For this purpose, we conducted a systematic literature review over research databases such as ERIC, ULAKBIM, Scopus, Web of Science, ProQuest, and COHE. A total of 10946 studies were identified with the search words ‘teacher identity’ and ‘Turkey’. We included only peer reviewed articles and open access dissertations published between the period of 2009-2019, which were carried out in the form of an intervention study conducted in the context of educational sciences in Turkey. More specifically the following inclusion criteria were employed: The studies: - published between the period of 2009-2019, - published as articles in peer reviewed journals, - conducted as Master’s theses and Ph.D. dissertations, - carried out in the Turkish context, - carried out in educational sciences, - involving qualitative and quantitative data, - adopted intervention study design The analysis is still on going. Two researchers will independently evaluate the reporting quality of the studies in terms of the theoretical and methodological aspects, as well as the context and results will be conducted to understand whether and how these interventions worked.Preliminary content analysis of the selected papers indicated that three of these studies were conducted with pre-service teachers while one of them was conducted with in-service teachers. Two of them were conducted in EFL context while the other two were about Mathematics teaching. Three of these studies adopted TI as a theoretical framework while only one of them adopted the socio-cultural theory. Two of them employed mixed methods while the other two were qualitative case studies. Two of these studies were about the effect of discussions and reflection, while one of them was about the effect of reflection only and one was about the effect of an acting course for teachers on TI development. They were all found to be effective. Further analysis of will be conducted to understand with the goal of establishing a case that more research on intervention should be conducted in the context of TI in Turkey.

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