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Title: Professionals developing professionalism :the interactional organisation of reflective practice
Authors: Harris, Andrew Robert
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: Reflective practice remains the dominant model for the professional development of teachers in the early twenty first century. A large body of research discusses this area from various theoretical standpoints, however, despite numerous calls to expand this research position, scant attention has been paid to the question of what happens when professionals attempt to carry out a process of reflective practice through talk. The few studies that have investigated this area claim to find little evidence of reflection occurring. This study directly engages this question by empirically investigating an interactional context where the institutional goal is to reflect on the participants’ professional actions through talk: the post-observation feedback meetings of a TESOL teacher-training certificate course. The study employs the methodology of institutional conversation analysis to uncover the organisation of talk in this context and relate it to the institutional goal of the feedback meetings. It demonstrates that the meetings are organised into a number of phases, each focussing on different ‘types’ of feedback: positive, critical, self, and group. It also demonstrates that the talk within each phase is oriented around a number of feedback topics, each focussing on a specific aspect of the trainee’s practices. Furthermore, that within these feedback topics the trainees engage in interactional processes with the trainers, through which they reflect on their practices in a series of stages: describing their experiences, drawing interpretations and theories from these descriptions, and finally making plans for future actions. The findings of this study explicate a process of reflective practice, as it is instantiated by the participants through talk. By presenting this data, its analysis, and its relationship to previous research, the study adds to our understanding of the interactional organisation of feedback meetings. It also provides the first systematic description of ‘reflective practice as an interactional activity’ and discusses the implications of this process for teacher-training professionals.
Description: PhD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences

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