Date of Award

12-2011

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

English

First Advisor

Gloria Park, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Linda Norris, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Lisya Seloni, Ph.D.

Abstract

Voices of Pedagogy, Positionality, and Power: A Narrative Inquiry of Identity and Ideology (Re)Construction of Algerian Graduate Students at American Universities chronicles the educational journeys of five Algerian graduate students attending TESOL/TESL and Applied Linguistics programs at US institutions of higher education. More particularly, it focused on (a) their past experiences in Algerian educational contexts, (b) their current experiences during their graduate studies in the US, and (c) the way they subsequently envision their future praxis in Algeria in light of their experiences in the US. The first two chapters set the scene for the empirical study, review relevant literature on English Language Teaching in Algeria and teacher education, and introduce the theoretical framework foregrounding the study, Critical Theory and its corollary Critical pedagogy, and Bourdieu’s theory of Habitus and Capital. The third chapter details the research methodology of the narrative inquiry that was completed from October 2010 to February 2011. It presents the data collection procedures (face-to-face interviews, online chats via skype, and written artifacts in the form of language learning autobiographies and course papers), and data analysis tools used. Chapter four presents the analysis of participants’ past narratives, and chapter five the analysis of the intricately linked present and future narratives. Chapter six presents the cross-case analyses of participants’ common and individual themes emerging in their past, present, and future narratives. The results revolve around discussions of American educational prestige that is encapsulated in the acquired cultural and symbolic capital, the need for critical pedagogical engagement within and beyond classroom discourses, and the ways in which the teachers of English resisted the stereotypes embedded in the society for Algerian teachers of English. Chapter six explores also the implications of participants’ stories of their averall experiences at US universities as a means for understanding and forging complex nuances emerging out of teacher identity, ways to socialize international students in teacher education programs, and multiple future research directions that include ethnographic longitudinal studies. The chapter closes the dissertation by providing some final thoughts on the de/valorization of different forms of capital acquired through graduate studies at US universities.

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