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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Thomas Nelson

First Committee Member

Marilyn Draheim

Second Committee Member

Harriett Arnold

Third Committee Member

Gayle Woolley


The purpose of this qualitative study was to examine the perceptions of exemplary teachers regarding their development as educators. Twelve elementary school teachers from four school districts took part in the investigation. Open-ended interviews were used to explore teachers' beliefs, their learning experiences as well as the personal and organizational factors that they felt had an impact on their development. Results from this study led to the formation of a grounded theory of exemplary teacher development which centered around the concept of continuous self renewal. Internal factors affecting renewal were associated with teachers' passion and purpose, perception of good teachers and holistic view of teaching and learning. External factors affecting renewal related to their personal support system, workplace supports and feedback about student growth. The study has implications for teacher educators, staff developers and administrators regarding how to support teacher development and how to structure learning opportunities that promote teacher growth.



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