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Tuesday, March 2 • 2:30pm - 2:45pm
Talk Session 4: Exploring graduate student identity and the intersection of multiple sub-identities

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Graduate education follows an apprenticeship model, primarily aimed at preparing students for academic careers; however, the inclusion of teaching within this apprenticeship is not always clear as faculty, students, and other stakeholders do not agree on the need for instructional training. Despite the variability in training available to graduate students, over half will be graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) at some point in their education. This number increases to 91% for chemistry graduate students. This discrepancy between hiring graduate students as GTAs and inconsistent inclusion of instructional training indicates a misalignment between the needs of graduate students and the support programs offer. This discrepancy also speaks to the imbalance in graduate student professionalization that is prevalent in the lack of preparedness of new faculty to teach. To better support graduate students, we must first understand how graduate student identities develop. The foci of studies are generally placed either on teaching or research identity, but not both simultaneously. Graduate student identity also has been introduced as a lens for encompassing multiple sub-identities; however, teaching identity is not emphasized. Through the collection of interviews from 19 chemistry graduate students across two institutions and analysis via qualitative methods, this work expands upon the conceptualization of graduate student identity. Sociocultural and identity theories were employed to understand graduate student identity development. Preliminary analyses show an emerging dichotomy between newer and older graduate students and the extent to which each group develops sub-identities beyond a science identity.

avatar for Adriana Corrales

Adriana Corrales

Graduate Student Researcher, San Diego State University

Tuesday March 2, 2021 2:30pm - 2:45pm CST