Despite the popularity of communities of practice (CoP) in education, there is a paucity of research on teacher preparation programs that are deliberately created to build and sustain CoP to help bilingual pre-service teachers’ learning. This qualitative study describes how a community of practice was purposefully developed in a teacher preparation program for bilingual undergraduates in Hawaii. Using multiple forms of qualitative data, such as classroom transcripts, interviews, online discussion posts, and reflection journals, I illustrate how a cohort of pre-service teachers and their instructor created a facilitative and reflective classroom community of practice. Using narrative inquiry and thematic analysis, I identified two overarching contextual conditions that provided a favorable learning environment for student participation: (1) sustained support and rapport within a cohort, and (2) narratives as a process of mutual engagement. Findings suggest teacher educators purposefully create CoP for pre-service teachers around shared narratives in order to foster sustained critical reflections.


Communities of Practice, Bilingual Pre-Service Teachers, Teacher Education, Narrative Inquiry, Thematic Analysis


I am grateful to CLEAR students for their participation in the study. Also, I would like to thank editor, Dan Wulff, Kathryn Davis, Heidi Hallman, Lisa Wolf-Wendel, and Mary Rice for their feedback on the paper.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
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