Disciplinary marginalization and sociopolitics: the U.S. PETE pre-tenure experience

K. Andrew R. Richards, Christopher J. Kinder, Victoria N. Shiver, Amelia Mays Woods, Casey Laine Cushing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Limited research in the context of physical education teacher education has examined faculty members’ preparation for the teaching aspect of the faculty role, particularly using longitudinal methods. Grounded in occupational socialization theory, the purpose of this qualitative, longitudinal panel study was to develop an in-depth understanding of pre-tenure PETE faculty members’ preparation for and perceptions of the role of teacher educator. Participants included 23 pre-tenure PETE faculty members (14 male, 9 female) who worked in U.S. institutions of higher education. Data sources included excerpts from six rounds of in-depth, individual interviews focused on participants training for experiences related to teacher education as well as one specific interview focused on their pre-tenure experiences as teacher educators. A collaborative approach to data analysis involving both inductive and deductive methods was adopted. Results indicated that the participants had to navigate the social environment of the workplace as well as the social construction of role expectations associated with teaching, research, and service. Specifically, qualitative analysis resulted in three themes: (a) challenges in managing teaching, research, and service roles; (b) university sociopolitics challenge PETE faculty members’ perceived mattering; and (c) systems of support are critical because PETE can be an isolating discipline. The results highlight challenges associated with the construction of faculty roles in a broader sense and those more specific to PETE. They also draw attention to the importance of relationships and a support network relative to teacher education and preparing future teacher educators for the realities of faculty life.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)761-774
Number of pages14
JournalSport, Education and Society
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2022


  • Higher education
  • longitudinal research
  • occupational socialization theory
  • physical education
  • qualitative research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Education
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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