This article reports the results of a qualitative study investigating the experiences of five former English language teachers in Hong Kong during their initial years of full-time teaching and the reasons for their permanent departure from the profession. Guided by a theory of teacher identity construction, the study employed a discourse analytic approach to understand the participants’ perceptions of their professional identity construction in discourse and practice. The results of in-depth interviews provide detailed descriptions of the ways in which the former teachers perceived the constraints and enablements to their professional identity construction within the context of their ultimate decision to leave the teaching profession. The findings problematise rigid divisions between different types of teachers and suggest the need to establish new spaces for identity construction that allow for the meshing of different teacher identities. Copyright © 2016 Taylor & Francis.
CitationTrent, J. (2017). Discourse, agency and teacher attrition: Exploring stories to leave by amongst former early career English language teachers in Hong Kong. Research Papers in Education, 32(1), 84-105.
- Teacher attrition
- Teacher retention
- Teacher identity
- Teacher education