University of Oulu

Anniina Holappa, Erkki T. Lassila, Sonja Lutovac & Minna Uitto (2022) Vulnerability as an Emotional Dimension in Student Teachers’ Narrative Identities Told With Self-Portraits, Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, 66:5, 893-906, DOI: 10.1080/00313831.2021.1939144

Vulnerability as an emotional dimension in student teachers’ narrative identities told with self-portraits

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Author: Holappa, Anniina1; Lassila, Erkki T.1; Lutovac, Sonja1;
Organizations: 1Faculty of Education, University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 2.4 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Informa, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-06-17


This article focuses on what student teachers tell about the emotional dimension of their identities with self-portraits. Narrative interviews with self-portraits were conducted with two student teachers in the final stages of their studies. The interviews were analysed by using narrative analysis, followed by a thematic cross-analysis of the two emplotted stories. The findings emphasise the importance of vulnerability as a significant emotional dimension of student teachers’ identities, showing them to be vulnerable in relation to themselves, to others and to cultural teacher stories. From the perspective of student teacher identity construction, it was notable that the student teachers described moments of feeling unsuited to being a teacher, which made them feel vulnerable. The article discusses the meaning of self-portraits for research and for teacher education; telling stories with self-portraits can be used to understand the emotional dimension of student teachers’ narrative identities.

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Series: Scandinavian journal of educational research
ISSN: 0031-3831
ISSN-E: 1470-1170
ISSN-L: 0031-3831
Volume: 66
Issue: 5
Pages: 893 - 906
DOI: 10.1080/00313831.2021.1939144
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 516 Educational sciences
Funding: This work was supported by the Academy of Finland [Grant numbers 265974, 307672 and 332232]; the Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation.
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 265974
Detailed Information: 265974 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
307672 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
332232 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Copyright information: © 2021 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.