International school teachers’ knowledge production in Canada: Professional growth within a COVID-19 teaching and learning context

  • Khalid El-Metaal

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Education (EdD)


The complex nature of teacher professional knowledge and the process through which that knowledge is produced represent an area of research interest for the fields of pre-service and in-service teacher education. There is, in fact, a growing body of literature that examines teacher knowledge and knowing within different institutional and cultural settings. However, there seems to be a relative dearth of research focussing on teacher professional growth in response to adverse circumstances such as natural disasters, civil conflict, and health crises. Therefore, this inquiry seeks to contribute to redressing this gap in the research by investigating the knowledge that teachers produce as they adapt to a COVID-19 teaching and learning environment. Furthermore, it examines the factors and processes that mediate, individually or collectively, the production of that knowledge.
Using a case study consisting of a team of six elementary school teachers working in a private international school in Canada, this investigation explores their professional knowledge and knowing through the lenses of Goodwin’s (2010) five knowledge domains and Clarke and Hollingsworth’s (2002) Interconnected Model of Teacher Professional Growth respectively. The inquiry adopts the Bricolage as an overall research strategy in order to accommodate the specificities of this research context. The research design includes the use of multiple data methods such as semi-structured interviews, observation of team meetings, and a variety of relevant documents.
The findings reinforce the assertion that knowledge production is a non-linear process and suggest that adverse circumstances have indeed the potential to inspire significant teacher professional growth. The data indicate that providing teachers with a robust conceptual framework to map out their professional practices in terms of knowledge domains could lead to a richer interpretation of their lived experience and reinforce their identity as legitimate producers of professional knowledge. In addition, the study sheds light on the heuristic nature of the relationship between reflection and enaction as mediators of knowledge production and teacher identity. The outcomes of the study have implications for teachers, school leadership, teacher education providers, as well as those researching teacher cognition.
Date of Award12 Oct 2022
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Bath
SupervisorSantiago Sanchez (Supervisor) & Ioannis Costas Batlle (Supervisor)


  • Teacher Professional Development
  • teacher identity
  • teacher cognition

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