Voices Unheard: Stories of Immigrant Teachers in Alberta
- 384 Downloads
This paper presents the stories of four immigrant teachers as they endeavor to resume their teaching careers in Calgary, Alberta. The teachers in this study participated in a six-month professional bridging program in Calgary in 2008 in order to upgrade their professional knowledge and to meet Alberta certification requirements before seeking employment in local school boards. A narrative inquiry methodology was used and data was collected from a series of unstructured interviews over a two and a half year period from September 2008 until May 2011. Data from the interviews were compiled into individual narratives that chronicle experiences of professional transformation and acculturation. In a changing educational Alberta landscape that is becoming increasingly diverse, stories of internationally educated professionals are increasingly relevant, yet seldom found in the literature on teaching.
KeywordsInternationally educated teachers Acculturation Professional integration
- Bhabha, H. (1998). The location of culture. New York: Routledge Press.Google Scholar
- Brigham, S. (2008). Seeing straight ahead with Pierre Bourdieu: female immigrant teacher in an arts-informed research inquiry. Paper presented at the Canadian Association for the Study of Adult Education Conference.Google Scholar
- Canada Teachers Federation (2006). Submission to the Labour Program of Human Resources and Social Development Canada: review of the Employment Equity Act: into the future. http://www.ctf-fce.ca/publications/Briefs/Subm-toHRSDC-reEmplymtEquityAct-eng.pdf. Accessed 3 April 2008.
- Clandinin, D. J., & Connelly, F. M. (1996). Teachers’ professional knowledge landscapes: teacher stories—stories of teachers—school stories—stories of schools. Educational Researcher, 25(3), 24–30.Google Scholar
- Clandinin, D. J., & Connelly, F. M. (2000). Narrative inquiry: experience and story in qualitative research. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
- Connelly, F. M., & Clandinin, D. J. (2006). Narrative inquiry. In J. Green, G. Camilli, & P. Elmore (Eds.), Handbook of complementary methods in education research. Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
- Connelly, F. M., & Clandinin, D. J. (1999). Shaping a professional identity: stories of educational practice. London: Althouse Press.Google Scholar
- Deters, P. (2008). The professional acculturation of internationally trained teachers in Canada: affordances, constraints, and the reconstruction of professional identity. Paper presented at the Sociocultural Perspectives and Teacher Education and Development Conference. www.ora.ouls.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:974f6dac-9472-4ca6…/ATTACHMENT01. Accessed 12 Jan 2010.
- Kailasanathan, S. (2006). Road to acculturation: discourse delineating the imperatives, strengths, and challenges of immigrant teachers. Paper presented at WestCAST, 2006: Vancouver. http://educ.ubc.ca/westcast/proceedings/Road%20to%20Acculturation%20Paper.pdf. Accessed 28 Jan 2009.
- Kelly, J & Cui, D (2010). A historical exploration of internationally educated teachers: Jamaican teachers in 1960’s Alberta. Canadian Journal of Educational Administration and Policy. 100, 1-22. http://umanitoba.ca/publications/cjeap/pdf_files/kelly_cui-iet.pdf. Accessed 4 April 2011.
- Mezirow, J. (1991) Transformative Dimensions of Adult Learning. San Francisco: Jossey Bass.Google Scholar
- Mezirow, J. (2003) ‘Transformative Learning: Theory to Practice’ Transformative Learning In Action. New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education, 74, 5–12.Google Scholar
- Phillion, J. (2003). Obstacles to accessing the teaching profession for immigrant women. Multicultural Education, 11(1), 41–45.Google Scholar
- Ryan, J., Pollack, A., & Antonelli, F. (2009). Teacher diversity in Canada: leaky pipelines, bottlenecks, and glass ceilings. Canadian Journal of Education, 32(3), 591–617.Google Scholar
- Shervey, G. & O’Byrne, A. (2006). Transitions to Alberta classrooms: a preparation program for teachers with international qualifications. Calgary: Alberta Education, Immigration and Integration (AEII).Google Scholar
- Statistics Canada (2007) Canadian Social Trends: Immigrants perspectives of their first four years. http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/11-008-x/2007000/9627-eng.htm. Accessed 28 Jan 2009.
- Statistics Canada Western Region and Northern Territories (2010). Liang. P., Portrait of the Immigrant Community.Google Scholar
- Taraban S. (2004). Professional Integration of Foreign-Trained Teachers in Ontario: Challenges and Opportunities. Report for the CERIS Graduate Student Research Award. http://ceris.metropolis.net/research-policy/GradStudentAwardReports/Taraban2004.pdf. Accessed 2 Feb 2009.
- Walsh, S. & Brigham, S. (2007). Internationally educated teachers and teacher education programs in Canada: current practices. Halifax: Atlantic Metropolis Centre for Excellence.Google Scholar