Preservice Teachers' Journey Towards Cultural Competency




Perez, Sabrina A.

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Teachers are at the front lines every day as educators. Their interactions whether positive or negative will have a lasting impact on students’ lives. The purpose of this study is to better understand how self-reflection and identification of implicit biases function as tools that can help early career teachers in their journey towards cultural competency. The following research questions have guided this study: (1) How do preservice teachers describe the role of their backgrounds (i.e., race, ethnicity, etc.) in relation to this process? (2) How does a preservice teacher’s identity shape their pedagogical approach? (3) How do preservice teachers describe the role of their implicit biases related to cultural scenarios that they are presented with and will be presented within their future careers? The study included four preservice teachers who were in their final year of their teacher preparation program at Texas State University. The data they provided was gathered through three interviews. The theoretical framework used to guide this study was funds of identity. The findings of the study revealed several themes among the participants which were operationalization/definitions of social justice, perceived lack of “White” culture, trauma, deficit thinking and funds of identity. Finally, implications and recommendations were presented.



Preservice teachers, Cultural competency, Deficit thinking, Funds of identity, Trauma, Social justice


Perez, S. A. (2022). <i>Preservice teachers' journey towards cultural competency</i> (Unpublished dissertation). Texas State University, San Marcos, Texas.


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