Chapter 8 – A Graduate Student Story

To do this, you are invited to read a story in Appendix G: An Example Study by a Graduate Student in education (another form of educator we have not visited yet) about a teacher. In this story, Rob Boody (1992) tells a “dissertation” story based on his “reading” of a story he interpreted Dave Jensen as telling through his practices as a high school teacher. Rob uses about 25 pages of a 159 page dissertation to tell the story in a familiar story form– as a descriptive portrayal of Dave Jensen at work. Then he identifies six themes or patterns of interpretation he believes highlight Dave’s work. One of those theme stories (6 pages worth) is included in Appendix G as part of Rob’s story.

After reading this story, you will be invited to look more closely at three ways Rob used to interpret or “read” Dave Jensen’s story: 1. Using an explicit interpretive stance through reference to the work of others, 2. Using an implicit interpretive stance through narrative description, and 3. Discovering the participants’ interpretive stance by using processes such as Spradley’s (1980) domain, taxonomic, and componential analyses.

Finally, you will be invited to look at your own work as an inquiring practitioner to examine how you tell stories of your experiences and how you read stories others are telling you of their experiences. You will then have a chance to expand your story reading skills through a qualitative inquiry application. In Chapter Nine, you will have a chance to expand your story telling skills.

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