Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Curriculum & Instruction


Curriculum and Instruction

Major Professor

Kieff, Judith

Second Advisor

Silvestri, Lynette

Third Advisor

Germain-McCarthy, Yvelynne

Fourth Advisor

Furman, Jim

Fifth Advisor

Bedford, April


Teacher stories were once relegated to informal gatherings but more recently this aspect of teacher development is being carefully studied in more formalized settings because it is believed to be an important part of teacher development. New ways are being sought to use various aspects of storytelling to help pre-service teachers develop important teaching skills through reflection on experience, dialogue journals, case studies and autobiography. Despite these efforts at the university level, it is especially difficult for pre-service teachers to integrate and apply theories from their methods courses to actual classroom practice. Less effort has been focused on storytelling processes that may occur outside these formal approaches. This study, therefore, looked at how pre-service teachers used stories told in an informal setting to process aspects of learning to teach. This study revealed that pre-service teachers engage in story telling for reasons and in ways that are different from teacher educator intents. Using interviews and private dialogues, patterns of when, how and why six pre-service teachers used oral stories emerged that illuminate challenges to using personal and appropriated stories in coursework. The findings of this study include how oral storytelling is used by pre-service teachers to process emotion and demonstrate specific identities and personal characteristics.


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