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‘Being’ a teacher – the impact of teacher identity on self-efficacy and professional development across a career

Written by: Alison Teagle
10 min read
ALISON TEAGLE, ST PAUL’S CATHOLIC COLLEGE, UK; ASSOCIATE FELLOW, UNIVERSITY OF SUSSEX, UK The importance of teacher identity When did you first feel that you were ‘a teacher’?  Can you recall when you first referred to yourself as a teacher when asked about your profession?  How has your teacher identity changed over time?  What impact has this had on your teaching, on the students that you teach and on your level of job satisfaction?   Identity is multifaceted. For teachers, this includes their sense of what ‘being a teacher’ means and how this links to their other senses of self. This can include their prior experiences of education and teachers, position in the life course, personal factors (family and health), situation (workplace, colleagues, students, region), educational policy context, personal beliefs and philosophies, as well as social and structural factors and inequalities (age, social class, gender, ethnicity, sexuality) (see Figure

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