A discursive study of models of emotion in teaching and learning science
Thesis DisciplineScience Education
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameDoctor of Philosophy
The purpose of this study is to uncover the principles that inform a teacher’s dialogic behaviour, and shape her feelings, and to understand the implications of these principles for multiple aspects of pedagogic practice. I investigate the principles that underpin an emotional practice for two teachers, Julia and Lydia, and their Year 10 science lower band learners. Towards this goal, I approach the theory and empirical data in this study in ways that create opportunities for researching teachers’ emotions that other approaches do not: I examine patterns, commonality and relationships across conditions and over time to reveal within-person differences, and differences between persons, for Julia and Lydia’s emotional practice. In addition, I outline discursive models of analysis that open up the space for investigating the role of teachers’ emotions in ways that other conceptual and methodological frameworks do not: I expand models of analysis to different descriptive and classificatory systems to maintain the integrity of the object. I bring together multiple theoretical perspectives to build a multilevel theory that provides comprehensive insight into teachers’ emotions. I also specify the nature of interactions between levels, for the multilevel theory, to enable cross-validation and cumulative evidence building. The research findings for this study coincide with and expand upon the findings for previous studies on teachers’ emotions. Julia’s emotions interact with her science teaching in powerful ways and realize an emotional practice of strong feelings, and ‘grand’ narratives. In contrast, Lydia’s emotions interact with her science teaching in ways that promote solidarity and realize an emotional practice of graded feelings, and multiple narratives. I extend upon the language of description in this study to take into account the teachers’ meaning-making relevant to their appraisal processes and emotions. The potential for research into teachers’ emotions is expanded in this study through the synthesis of different descriptive and classificatory systems, and categories. In addition, the research findings provide insight into the relative costs and benefits of different models of emotion for multiple levels of pedagogic practice.