Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor's Name

Linda Spears-Bunton

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Patricia Barbetta

Third Advisor's Name

Kyle Perkins

Fourth Advisor's Name

Heather Russell

Keywords

British Literature, Post-Colonial Literature, 12th Grade, English, Secondary English Education, Education, Teachers

Date of Defense

3-29-2013

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to understand the experiences and perceptions of 12th-grade literature teachers about curriculum, Post-Colonial literature, and students. Theories posed by Piaget (1995), Vygotsky (1995), and Rosenblatt (1995) formed the framework for this micro-ethnographic study. Seven teachers from public and private schools in South Florida participated in this two-phase study; three teachers in Phase I and four in Phase II. All participants completed individual semi-structured interviews and demographic surveys. In addition, four of the teachers were observed teaching.

The analysis yielded three themes and two sub-themes: (a) knowledge concerned teachers’ knowledge of British literature content and Post-Colonial authors and their literature; (b) freedom described teachers’ freedom to choose how to teach their content. Included in this theme was dilemmas associated with 12th-grade classrooms which described issues that were pertinent to the 12th-grade teacher and classroom that were revealed by the study; and (c) thoughts about students described teachers’ perceptions about students and how literature might affect the students. Two subthemes of knowledge were as follows:(1) text complexity described teacher responses to a Post-Colonial text’s complexity and (2) student desirability/teachability described teachers’ perception about how desirable Post-Colonial texts would be to students and whether teachers would be willing to teach these texts.

The researcher offers recommendations for understanding factors associated with 12th-grade teachers perceptions and implications for enhancing the 12th-grade experience for teachers and curriculum, based on this study: (a) build teacher morale and capacity, (b) treat all students as integral components of the teaching and learning process; teachers in this study thought teaching disenfranchised learners was a form of punishment meted out by the administration, and (c) include more Post-Colonial authors in school curricula in colleges and schools as most teachers in this study did not study this type of literature nor knew how to teach it.

Identifier

FI13120619

 

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