Ed.D. Dissertations

Teacher Transformation through Story and Experience: A Narrative Study of Peer Observation, Critical Inquiry, Collaboration, and Trust

Eryn Elizabeth Berg, Concordia University - Portland


Professional development has long been out of the hands of those for whom it matters most—the teachers. The history of professional development from the founding of common schools to the bloom of accountability with the enactment of national policy, has long left the teacher out of the discussion. In addition, what teachers need to experience to undergo change for their classrooms has also been left out of the conversation. This dissertation was an exploration of the history of professional development as well as why it matters that teachers have meaningful and transformational professional development that enables them to change. From an exploration of Mezirow’s transformational theory to Bandura’s theory of social change, this dissertation examined change and applied that to teacher learning through professional development models. Narratives have long been used as a vehicle for teachers to tell their stories and by interviewing teachers about their experience with peer observation as the model for transformational professional development, this dissertation asserted that through trusting relationships, teachers can change and grow.