The focus of this article is twofold: (a) It explores how autobiographical memory and future imaginings can be used as a resource for pedagogical understanding in Initial Teacher Education, and (b) The paper engages a methodological experiment where there is a layered reading of texts across time, 2008-2018.The paper presents, through a narrative analysis of autobiographical texts, the stories of two student teachers, Ciara and John (Text 1, 2008). These student teachers were in the early years of their undergraduate four-year programme in my university and I was their English Pedagogics lecturer. Later, I revisit these student teachers’ narratives and read them under new interpretative conditions based on their salient and punctum effects, significant and emotional effects, on me as a teacher educator (Text 2, 2018). Then, theorizing with relevant literature, I consider how to foster conditions and methodologies of growth as student teachers engage their autobiographical memories and imaginings. Ultimately, my findings underline that self-knowledge is central in the pedagogical encounter of self, other and subject matter (Latta & Buck, 2008) and that working with evocative, creative and emotionally attuned pedagogy can support this process of autobiographical / pedagogical understanding.


Autobiographical Memory, Future Imaginings, Pedagogical Understanding, Creative and Evocative Pedagogies, Emotional Attunement

Author Bio(s)

Carmel Hinchion is a lecturer in Teaching, Learning and Assessment, and lecturer in English Pedagogics, at the University of Limerick, Ireland. Her research interests include student teachers' experiences of learning to teach and their developing identities as teacher, English Pedagogy and qualitative research methodology in education. Please direct correspondence to carmel.hinchion@ul.ie.


I would like to thank the student teachers who shared their autobiographies with me and Professor Kathy Hall, University College Cork, for encouraging and supporting me as a researcher.

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