Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Curriculum & Instruction

Committee Chair

JoAnn Phillion

Committee Member 1

Jake Burdick

Committee Member 2

Suniti Sharma

Committee Member 3

Stephanie Zywicki


Globalization brings the trend that intercultural teacher recruitment and migration become more prominent, and teaching internationally is a worldwide phenomenon. My research is aimed at examining Chinese intercultural teachers’ lived experiences and identity development from a theoretical perspective of interculturalism. I employed narrative inquiry as the research methodology to explore the experiences of five Chinese teachers who have teaching experiences in China and in the U.S. To understand the Chinese teachers’ lived experiences and to explore their identity development, I examined the personal disposition and social contexts in which these teachers lived and worked, teaching practices in different cultures, and relationships they developed with their students, parents, and colleagues. Interviews with my five teacher participants were conducted over a period of one year. Other forms of data included autobiographies, artifacts, art work, field-notes, research journal reflections, and theoretical memos. Data were transcribed and filed into an archival system. I used Polkinghorne’s (1995) narrative analysis and Barone’s (2007) narrative construction for my data analysis. Through detailed examination of the Chinese teachers’ narratives, lived experiences, and stories, I concluded that my Chinese teachers’ behaviors and intercultural experiences were embodied with the tenets of interculturalism theory; narrative inquiry functioned as a tool to improve intercultural teachers’ teaching practices and pedagogy; and the Chinese teachers’ identity closely adhered to their culture root or the landscape in which they grew or received education. This study suggests that intercultural teacher’s preparation and development program should be highlighted, intercultural teachers’ own cultures and lived experiences need to be valued, and narrative inquiry as an action-oriented method to reflect teachers’ teaching practices and improve their pedagogy is to be promoted.