Virtual School Meanderings

April 28, 2017

AERA 2017 – Teaching in Niches: New Divisions of Teachers’ Work in Online K–12 Schools

The fourth session I’m blogging at the 2017 annual meeting of the American Education Research Association (AERA) is:

Teaching in Niches: New Divisions of Teachers’ Work in Online K–12 Schools

  • In Event: Roundtable Session 10
    In Roundtable Session: 30.080-16 – Various Approaches to Reflecting on, Measuring, and Sharing Teacher Identities

Fri, April 28, 12:25 to 1:55pm, Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, Ballroom Level, Hemisfair Ballroom 1


Online education is often described as serving neglected categories of students, and thus filling formerly unoccupied niches in the education system – a way of ‘achieving equal educational opportunity.’ Using data from a study of 22 teachers across 10 virtual schools in Ohio, as wella as document analysis, and evaluation of media representations, this paper examines how the orientations of online K-12 schools towards such niches structure the work of teaching and shape teachers’ “occupational rhetorics.” Our overarching concern is with how such niche populations are discursively and institutionally produced, and how teachers come to shape and interpret their work in terms of these niche populations.


  • Jan K. Nespor, The Ohio State University
  • Rick J. Voithofer, The Ohio State University

Now I have no notes on this session, as I am still in California.  However, if you are in this session, please post your notes in the comments below.

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