Two forms of perezhivanie that work: integrating technology into university language classroom
This is a study of teachers' responses to the push towards greater technology use in a Russian Higher Education context viewed through the Russian notion of perezhivanie and, taken more broadly, of why and how the teachers make decisions and act the way they do. Unlike earlier work in the teacher development field, where predominantly cognition served thinking and decision making processes, here the focus is on a unity of emotion, cognition, and context in the notion of perezhivanie. I define perezhivanie as a given psychological phenomenon of ‘cognitive and emotional reciprocal processing of previous and new experience’ (Golombek & Doran, 2014:104). Perezhivanie is close to reflection, but more related to the teacher’s feelings, and this study is motivated by the possible developmental potential of perezhivanie. Using audio data from two in-depth qualitative interviews with each of ten university language teachers about their experience with technology, I first explored contextual complexities the participants identified, and then the participants’ perezhivanie related to these complexities. I analysed the data, using techniques of thematic textual analysis and structural analysis of the narrative parts of the participants’ accounts. The findings show that the teachers responded to complexities of technology integration in various ways. A broad pattern emerged, however, when teachers were prevented from fulfilling their motives, due to the complexities that appeared. The teachers initially experienced frustration, denial, and various other emotions. After that, they passed through a stage of acceptance, and started to engage with the problem more cognitively, and this induced sense-making and, therefore, moving forward. My second finding has brought to the surface that perezhivanie, following Vasilyuk (1991), exists in three forms, which are perezhivanie-experiencing, perezhivanie-apprehension, and perezhivanie-reflection, and I discuss how these forms of perezhivanie work across the above described periods of difficulty. Finally, the thesis discusses how perezhivanie is complex and has a multileveled structure, but with clear potential for understanding teacher development.
This paper presents a practical approach for language teachers to do small-scale
classroom research as a way of developing understandings of themselves and their
practice, potentially leading to re-designing of their activity. The approach draws on the
traditions of reflective practice, which initiates the inquiry into the classroom life by the
action research medium, as well as on more innovative heuristic tools for fostering
teachers’ serendipity. The latter suggests focusing on the teachers’ emotions.
This paper presents ongoing research into teachers' responses to the push towards greater technology use in a Russian Higher Educational. It discusses the state of the art in the language teacher development in the country. It is argued that traditional reflection based teacher development frameworks such as Action Research or Cooperative Development require thorough consideration before implementing in Russia top down due to historically shaped ‘one size fits all’ language teaching methodology and Soviet authoritarian ideology, which inevitably influence teaching practice. I propose an alternative, a bottom up strategy with the aim of understanding how the concept of perezhivanie can be used as a heuristic tool in the complex settings such as the technologically enhanced language classroom. ‘Capturing’ teachers’ perezhivanie provides insights into teacher responses to top-down initiatives and offers directions how to dialogically shape those responses. I suggest that perezhivanie has a formative power on teachers and therefore can be used in teacher education, training and development programmes.
Using Action Research to explore Web 2.0 possibilities with Russian teachers of English