The lived experience of newly qualified primary school teachers in their first year of teaching

Activity: Academic Talks or PresentationsOral presentationResearch


This presentation explores the lived experiences of a critical case sample of eight primary newly qualified teachers embarking on their first year of teaching in England, with focus on the ways their identities as teachers were impacted by their experiences. All participants were trained at the same Initial Teacher Education Provider on a three-year undergraduate degree in Primary Education with Qualified Teacher Status during the academic years of 2013-2016. It explores the individual perspectives, subjective interpretations and issues they identified as contributing factors to their satisfaction, motivation and sense of self.

A qualitative, interpretivist, phenomenological approach underpinned the gathering and analysis of data. This approach captured the uniqueness of the participants’ experiences and their subsequent interpretations. Their aspirations, thoughts and expectations were explored through a series of semi structured interviews.

The study findings revealed ways that mentors, head teachers, parents and children interacted with the new teachers to inform their perceptions and interpretations of their first year of teaching and how they saw themselves as teachers. Data captured at the start of their first year reveal the NQTs’ trepidation, anticipation, anxiety and excitement for what was to come and their views that they had much to offer their new schools, particularly in respect to their skills in physical education. Findings highlight the importance of context, emotion and people in the new teachers’ lived experiences. Their stories provide information that teacher educators may find valuable when considering the ways teachers are supported to prepare for teaching and in their early careers. Ultimately, the study findings have the potential to inform ways new teachers may be retained in the profession and empower them as agents of change with capacity to understand and challenge cultural norms and expectations which may not be beneficial.
Period7 Jun 202111 Jun 2021
Event titleAIESEP Scientific Congress 2021: Decending the Mountain:Exploring the inpact of research on pedagogy and practice
Event typeConference
LocationAlberta, Canada, AlbertaShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational