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Issues in Educational Research, 2019, Vol 29(3), 923-937.
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Exploring the ontological nature of teachers' conversations

Sharyn Schubert and David Giles
Flinders University, South Australia

The systemic influence of the neoliberal ideology, with its political and social business rationalities, appears to be having an impact on a teacher's way of being. In this context, the ontological nature of teachers' ways of 'being in' conversations (Schubert, 2018). Everyday teacher experiences of being in conversation were described by participants and interpreted for powerful phenomenological themes against the backdrop of the philosophical writings of Heidegger. Conversations were shown to have a human condition of 'thrownness'. Yet conversations are imbued with linguistic meanings, interrupted in moments of unrest and uncertainty, which are felt by teachers. These moments glimpsed the nature of a teacher's ways of being a teacher. Teacher's ways of being notice, see, feel and act with intent. In their human capacity the teachers sought to question, what is good, and to act with intentionality toward the human wellbeing of others. In summary this research inquiry challenges the dominant ideology that labels quality teaching in managerial terms. It is a timely paper addressing the reductionism that occurs when humans are seen as merely products serving a system.
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Authors: Dr Sharyn Schubert is currently a secondary school teacher in Adelaide, South Australia where she holds a degree in Doctor of Education from Flinders University. She has had 30 years of being a teacher and involved in various humanities curriculum developments at the local and State level. Her area of research is conversational and ontological pedagogy.
Email: sharynschubert@gmail.com, sschubert@sac.sa.edu.au

Professor David Giles is a Professor of Educational Leadership & Management at College of Education, Psychology and Social Work, Flinders University, Adelaide. With over 50 publications he has a particular interest in hermeneutic phenomenology and appreciative inquiry research methodologies as vehicles for exploring the experiential, relational and phenomenological nature of education and educational leadership.
Email: dgiles1@gmail.com

Please cite as: Schubert, S. & Giles, D. (2019). Exploring the ontological nature of teachers' conversations. Issues in Educational Research, 29(3), 923-937. http://www.iier.org.au/iier29/schubert.pdf

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