20 SES 11, What Supports Academic Performance and Wellbeing Related to Educational Environments and the Interplay of Emotion and Identity for Mobile and Immigrant Students?
This investigation is the third case study in a series of inquiry on intercultural learning and global education in a study-aboard program. Student teachers of this program spent an academic term abroad, taking university courses and participating in teaching practice at local schools. This program called Ke-LEGE was organized by seven universities in Austria, Estonia, Finland and South Korea.
In 2011-2012, the first qualitative case study was conducted on mobile students’ intercultural learning and experiences. Five themes were uncovered: intercultural perspectives for gaining insights on and outside campus; making sense of educational systems and practice; self-identity and social identity; stress related to intercultural exposure and situations; and interactions and communication for interpersonal understanding (Johnson, Heo, Reich, Leppisaari, & Lee, 2015). Based on the findings, we conducted our second investigation, to focus on emotion, stress and identity issues in the trajectories of the mobile students. We discovered that their identities and emotions were shaped by the personal and social context of the experience. The positive experiences they narrated in the interviews seemed to have enabled authentic learning and reassurance of their identities and capabilities as future teachers (Johnson & Heo, 2013). In this third case study, we take a closer look at the issue.
Our primary viewpoint on experience is influenced by John Dewey (1938/1991, 1934/1989). According to Dewey, an educative experience is liberating and uniting, as it opens the continuous path of reconstructing and recreating the habituated meanings of the world as well as the enduring attitudes of the self (Heo, 2004; Yang, 1998). A genuinely educative experience must build up an individual’s continuous reconstruction, moving from past and present to future experience, and involve the tensional transaction between internal conditions of the individual and his social world (Dewey, 1938/1991). Dewey emphasized two important principles of educative experience: interaction between the person and his or her environment, and continuity as a link of a previous experience and a current one (Bassey, 2010; Fishman & McCarthy, 1998). Individuals’ experiences are interweaved with spatial and temporal contexts of what actually happens in real settings.
Following Dewey’s (1934/1989, 1938/1991), and Clandinin and Connelly's (2000) notions, we conceptualize narrative as a fundamental way of understanding and sharing experiences. Individuals tell lived stories of themselves, and narrative researchers write narratives using the stories. The lived stories include certain people, actions, incidents and contexts that make the experience unique and meaningful. Narrative inquiry may reveal how the mobile students’ experiences in an unfamiliar context are transformed into intercultural insights and competences, which may not be exposed through all qualitative research methods (Clandinin & Connelly, 2000).
Our previous qualitative study (Johnson et al., 2015) proved that emotions are a driving source for intercultural learning. We defined emotions as something that individuals perform and embody in their daily interactions. Emotions are not learned sequentially as a set of skills but evolve over time (Korthagen, 2004; Kuby, 2013).
We see identities as a range of meanings that the mobile students assign to themselves as individuals and members of various groups. People work on their personal, professional and social identities actively in the “routes” of their daily lives (Staff 1999). Thus, these students’ identities are not fixed nor ‘hidden’ but changeable.
This case study aims to explore how individuals’ emotion and identity interacts in intercultural experiences and enhances intercultural learning. The research questions are as follows: 1) How do mobile students narrate their intercultural experiences? 2) What are the roles of emotion and identity in intercultural experiences?
Bassey, M. O. (2010). Educating for the real world: an illustration of John Dewey’s principles of continuity and interaction. Journal of Educational Studies, 36(1), 13-20. Clandinin, D & Connelly, F. (2000). Narrative Inquiry: Experience and Story in Qualitative Research. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. Dewey, J. (1934/1989). Art as experience. In J. A. Boydston (Ed.), John Dewey: Later Works 1935-53 (Vol. 10). Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press. (Original work published 1934). Dewey, J. (1938/1991). Experience and education. In J. A. Boydston (Ed.), John Dewey: Later Works (Vol. 13). Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press. (Original work published 1938). Fishman, S. M., & McCarthy, L. (1998). John Dewey and the challenge of classroom practice. New York, NY: Teachers College Press. Golombek, P. R. & Johnson, K. E. (2004) Narrative inquiry as a mediational space: examining emotional and cognitive dissonance in second‐language teachers’ development. Teachers and Teaching: Theory and Practice, 10(3), 307-327. Gubrium, J. & Holstein, J. (2009). Analyzing narrative reality. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE. Heo, H. (2004). Inquiry on Storytelling for the Web-Based Environmental Learning Environment. Paper presented at 2004 ASCILITE conference, Perth, Australia. Retrieved from http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED485140.pdf Johnson, E, & Heo, H. (2013). Unveiling emotionality, stress and identity issues of study-abroad experiences with the help of narrative inquiry. Paper presented at the 2013 ECER EERA Conference, Istanbul, Turkey. Johnson, E., Heo, H., Reich, K., Leppisaari, I., & Lee, O. (2015). Exploring exchange students’ global minds in a study abroad project. Journal of Intercultural Communication, 38. Retrieved from https://www.immi.se/intercultural/ Korthagen, F. (2004). In search of essence of a good teacher: towards a more holistic approach in teacher education. Teaching and Teacher Education, 20(1), 77–97. Kuby, C. R. (2013). 'OK this is hard': Doing emotions in social justice dialogue. Education, Citizenship and Social Justice, 8(1), 29-42. Kvale, S., & Brinkmann, S. (2008). Interviews: Learning the craft of qualitative research interviewing. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Rodgers, C. (2002). Defining Reflection: Another Look at John Dewey and Reflective Thinking. Teachers College Record, 104(4), 842-866. Staff (1999). A conversation with Stuart Hall. The Journal of the International Institute, 7 (1). Retrieved from http://quod.lib.umich.edu/j/jii/4750978.0007.107?rgn=main;view=fulltext Yang, E. (1998). Continuity and interaction as the principles of nature, experience and inquiry in John Dewey’s philosophy: A theoretical study for reconstruction in education (Unpublished doctoral dissertation). State University of New York, US.
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