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Australian Journal of Teacher Education

Australian Journal of Teacher Education

Abstract

This study addresses a gap in current literature by applying a qualitative phenomenological approach to understand how teachers with a calling orientation perceive meaning in their work. A calling orientation has been defined by Wrzesniewski, et al. (1997) as a commitment to one’s work as it contributes to the greater good and makes the world a better place. Individuals’ perception of participation in meaningful work has been closely linked to subjective wellbeing. The current study revealed that teachers’ reported that they found meaning in their work through having an impact on their students’ lives and through positive relationships with students and colleagues. However, there was an incongruence between activities that teachers find meaningful and the actual activities that they perform daily in their roles. Supporting teachers to find meaning in their work and to engage in meaningful work activities may serve to improve teacher wellbeing.


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