On the Relation between Iranian EFL Teachers’ Sense of Professional Identity and their Responsibility

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of Management, Mashhad Branch, Islamic Azad University, Mashhad, Iran

2 Department of English, Mashhad Branch, Islamic Azad University, Mashhad, Iran,


Responsibility has always been one of the major concerns of teachers and those who are involved in the teaching-learning process. This is the way, since, if the sense of responsibility is improved and maintained in teachers, almost any other aspect of the teaching and learning environment would be considered safe. Therefore, the researchers tried to look for the possible relation between language teachers’ sense of responsibility and their professional identity. Thus, a group of 100 EFL teachers from language schools and different universities took part in the study. Two questionnaires that were previously proved to be valid and reliable were used as the instruments in this study. Regression was applied for the analysis of the data and the results indicated that there was a significant relationship between teachers’ professional identity and their responsibility. More specifically, it was revealed that there was a strong and positive relationship between teachers’ responsibility and motivation as one of the indicators of teachers’ professional sense of identity.


Abtahi, T., & Motallebzadeh, K. (2016). Iranian EFL teachers’ sense of professional identity and their computer literacy. International Journal of Applied Linguistics & English Literature, 5(2), 207-214.
Aliakbari, M., & Babanezhad Kafshgar, N. (2013). On the relationship between teachers’ sense of responsibility and their job satisfaction: The case of Iranian high school teachers. European Online Journal of Natural and Social Sciences, 2(2), 1805-3602.
Beijaard, D., Verloop, N., & Vermunt, J. D. (2000). Teachers’ perceptions of professional identity: An exploratory study from a personal knowledge perspective. Teaching and Teacher Education, 16(1), 749–764.
Beijaard, D., Meijer, P. C., & Verloop, N. (2004). Reconsidering research on teachers’ professional identity. Teaching and Teacher Education, 20(2), 107-128.
Bovens, M. (1998). The quest for responsibility: Accountability and citizenship in complex organizations. Cambridge University Press.
Bullough, R. V. (1997). Practicing theory and theorizing practice. In J. Loughran, & T. Russell (Eds.), Purpose, passion and pedagogy in teacher education (pp. 13–31). Falmer Press.
Canrinus, E. T., Helms‐Lorenz, M., Beijaard, D., Buitink, J., & Hofman, A. (2011). Profiling teachers’ sense of professional identity. Educational Studies, 37(5), 593-608.
Canrinus, E. T., Helms-Lorenz, M., Beijaard, D., Buitink, J., & Hofman, A. (2012). Self-efficacy, job satisfaction, motivation and commitment: Exploring the relationships between indicators of teachers’ professional identity. European Journal of Psychology of Education, 27(1), 115-132.
Connelly, F. M., & Clandinin, D. J. (1999). Shaping a professional identity: Stories of education practice. Althouse Press.
Cooper, K., & Olson, M. R. (1996). The multiple ‘I’s’ of teacher identity. In M. Kompf, W. R. Bond, D. Dworet, & R. T. Boak (Eds.), Changing research and practice: Teachers’ professionalism, identities and knowledge (pp. 78–89). The Falmer Press.
Day, C. (2002). School reform and transitions in teacher professionalism and identity. International Journal of Educational Research, 37(8), 677-692.
Delimma, V. (2015). Professional identity, professional commitment and teachers’ performance. International Journal of Novel Research in Education and Learning, 2(4), 1-12.
Firestone, W. A., & Rosenblum, S. (1988). Building commitment in urban high schools. Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 10(4), 285-299.
Flores, M. A., & Day, C. (2006). Contexts which shape and reshape new teachers’ identities: A multi-perspective study. Teaching and Teacher Education, 22(2), 219-232.
Ganjali, R., Ashraf, H., Motallebzadeh, K. (2019). Developing and validating EFL instructors’ professional commitment questionnaire through PLS-SEM. Iranian Journal of Applied Language Studies, 11(2), 81-114. https://dx.doi.org/10.22111/ijals.2019.5447
Ganjali, R., Ashraf, H., Motallebzadeh, K. (2020). EFL university instructors’ employment status and their perception of professional commitment. Research in English Language Pedagogy, 8(1), 123-146.
Guskey, T. R. (1988). Teacher efficacy, self-concept, and attitudes toward the implementation of instructional innovation. Teaching and Teacher Education, 4(1), 63-69.
Hamilton, S. E. (2013). Exploring professional identity: The perceptions of chartered accountant students. The British Accounting Review, 45(1), 37–49.
Hao, C. (2011). Changes and characteristics of EFL teachers’ professional identity: The cases of nine university teachers. Chinese Journal of Applied Linguistics (Quarterly), 34(1), 3-21.
Higgins, E. T. (1997). Beyond pleasure and pain. American Psychologist, 52(12), 1280-1300.
Inayatullah, A., & Jehangir, P. (2002). Teacher’s job performance: The role of motivation. Abasyn Journal of Social Science, 5(2), 78-99.  
Kachru, B. B., & Nelson, C. L. (2001). World Englishes. In A. Burns & C. Coffin (Eds.), Analysing English is a Global Context (pp. 9-25). Routledge.
Kerby, A. (1991). Narrative and the self. Indiana University Press.
Kompf, M., Bond, W. R., Dworet, D., & Boak, R. T. (Eds.). (1996). Changing research and practice: Teachers’ professionalism, identities and knowledge (pp.20-32). Falmer Press.
Koohkan, A., & Motallebzadeh, K. (2016). Participatory management and Iranian EFL teachers’ job satisfaction and organizational commitment. Journal of Global Research in Education and Social Science, 5(1), 2454-1834.
Lauermann, F. (2013). Teacher responsibility: Its meaning, measure, and educational implications [Unpublished doctoral dissertation]. The University of Michigan.
Lauermann, F., & Karabenick, S. A. (2011). Taking teacher responsibility into account (ability): Explicating its multiple components and theoretical status. Educational Psychologist, 46(2), 122-140.
Lauermann, F., & Karabenick, S. A. (2013). The meaning and measure of teachers’ sense of responsibility for educational outcomes. Teaching and Teacher Education, 30(1), 13-26.
Lee, V. E., & Loeb, S. (2000). School size in Chicago elementary schools: Effects on teachers’ attitudes and students’ achievements. American Educational Research Journal, 37(1), 3-31.
Lenk, H. (Ed.). (2007). Global techno science and responsibility: Schemes applied to human values, technology, creativity, and globalization (pp. 166-198). Degryuter.
Liou, I. Y. (2008). English as an international language and teachers’ professional identity [Unpublished doctoral dissertation]. School of Education, Deakin University.
Malmir, A., & Mohammadi, P. (2018). Teachers’ reflective teaching and self-efficacy as predicators of their professional success: A case of Iranian EFL teachers. Research in English Language Pedagogy (RELP), 6(1), 117–138.
Masoumpanah, Z., & Zarei, G. R. (2014). EIL, Iranian Teachers’ professional identity and perception of professional competence. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Science, 98(1), 1100-1109
McKay, S. L. (2002). Teaching English as an international language: Rethinking goals and approaches (pp. 121-122). Oxford University Press.
Muijs, D., & Reynolds, D. (2002). Being or doing: The role of teacher behaviors and beliefs in school and teacher effectiveness in mathematics, a SEM analysis. Journal of Classroom Interaction, 37(2), 3-15.
Ofoegbu, F. I. (2004). Teacher motivation: A factor for classroom effectiveness and school improvement in Nigeria. College Student Journal, 38(1), 81-89.
Opdenakker, M, C., & Van Damme, J. (2006). Teacher characteristics and teaching styles as effectiveness enhancing factors of classroom practice. Teaching and Teacher Education, 22(1), 1-21.
Pelletier, L. G. (2002). A motivational Analysis of self-determination for pro-environmental behaviors. In E. L. Deci & R. M. Ryan (Eds.), Handbook of Self-determination research (pp. 205-275). The University of Rochester Press.
Puglia, B. (2008). The professional identity of counseling students in master’s level CACREP accredited programs [Doctoral dissertation]. Counseling & Human Services, Old Dominion University. https://dx.doi.org/10.25777/5045-zb17
Salehizadeh, S., Shabani, M., & Malmir, A. (2020). Professionalism: The perceptions of Iranian English teachers of competence and performance in language teaching. Iranian Journal of English for Academic Purposes, 9(1), 1–14.
Wang, X. (2014). Investigation on the professional identity of senior high school English teachers. Journal of Language Teaching and Research, 5(4), 769-774.
Winter, D. G. (1992). Responsibility. In C. P. Smith, J. W. Atkinson, D. C. McClelland & J. Veroff (Eds.), Motivation and personality: Handbook of thematic content analysis (pp.500-505). Cambridge University Press.
Winter, P. A., Brenner, D. B., & Petrosko, J. M. (2006). Teacher job satisfaction in a reform state: The influence of teacher characteristics, job dimensions, and psychological states. Journal of School Leadership, 16(4), 416-437.