'I'm neither entertaining nor charismatic ...' negotiating university teacher identity within diverse student groups

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Colleges, School and Institutes


This paper focuses on the ways in which lecturers in two universities negotiated their identities as teachers of students from diverse backgrounds within the context of the changing nature of higher education. This research forms part of a two-year project which explored, among other things, the influence of student and teacher identities on academic engagement. Drawing on interview, focus group and classroom observation data, we consider the influence of educational and professional experiences on teacher identity. We also explore the influence of teachers' conceptions about themselves as teachers, about their students and their institutions on the teaching and academic engagement of students from a range of backgrounds. We conclude by suggesting how academic developers might support teachers in developing their understanding of student diversity and create opportunities to explore these concepts in relation to their own identities as teachers.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)483-494
Number of pages12
JournalTeaching in Higher Education
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2009


  • student diversity, widening participation, higher education, teacher identity