The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type


Degree Name

English: Teaching English as a Second Language: M.A.




College of Liberal Arts

First Advisor

James Robinson

Second Advisor

Choonkyong Kim

Third Advisor

James Heiman

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Keywords and Subject Headings

Phenomenology, phenomenological, Langauge Teacher Identity, discourse socialization, collaboration, co-teaching, Taiwan, elementary school, teacher conflict, decision-making, ESL, EFL, ELL, private school


Considering the prevalence of the co-teaching model in Taiwan, there is little research describing the partnership's decision-making process. This study uses the phenomenological methodology to better understand their lived experience making choices as a team. This project proposes the research question: How do co-teachers make decisions together in the classroom? Semi-structured interviews were conducted with two co-teaching partnerships in Taiwan English education elementary classroom. In this project, the five themes described are shared responsibility, team planning or lack thereof it, dynamic and expectation of roles, beliefs about classroom management and education, differences of belief and background, and unanticipated outcomes and vague disillusionment. Using the theoretical framework of Varghese, Morgan, Johnston, and Johnson (2005) particularly Language Teacher Identity, and Wegner, (1998) Dimensions of practice as the properties of the community allows for an understanding of the co-teaching decision making process for members in Taiwan elementary school. Analyzing the co-teachers’ decision making in terms of co-teacher identity conflict, discourse socialization and negotiation provides necessary insight. Recommendations involve research for pre-service teachers involving Language Teacher Identity, but specifically with the growing numbers of foreign teachers arriving to Taiwan. The foreign teachers that are coming to teach in Taiwan need available information, and resources pertaining to discourse socialization, and agency in teacher identity. Further research is needed in regards to Language Teacher Identity conflict, agency, and negotiation, as it is an under-researched field for co-teachers to better understand and communicate about these issues. Additionally local education bureaus need to be more effective in dealing with inappropriate designations for foreign teachers in Taiwan with the local private school franchises.


Thank you to my family, especially Katie Downey, Earl and Robert Beatty Downey.



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