A dialogic conception of learning: collaborative peer coaching

Pamela Jewett (Department of Instruction and Teacher Education, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina, USA)
Deborah MacPhee (Department of Curriculum and Instruction, Illinois State University, Normal, Illinois, USA)

International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education

ISSN: 2046-6854

Publication date: 25 March 2012



The purpose of this paper is to provide an account of the coaching element that was included in an existing graduate literacy course and to describe the responses of experienced and less‐experienced teachers as they began to add collaborative peer coaching to their teaching identities.


Data collected included teachers’ coaching logs and written reflections on the coaching experience, and field notes taken by a professor. Data were analysed qualitatively through open coding. Initially, the authors read data individually and coded them by what they perceived to be the teachers’ coaching moves. Separately, they developed lists of codes and then reviewed coding lists to work through idiosyncratic data, collapse codes, align their language.


The authors identified three overarching and multi‐faceted moves that the coaching teachers made as they worked with partner teachers. They found that the teachers: used restraint; focused on partner teacher's needs; and provided opportunities for classroom observations and demonstrations.

Practical implications

Due to budget cuts, district coaching initiatives are being down‐sized. With fewer literacy coaches available, the authors believe that classroom teachers would benefit from learning about how to support each another as peer coaches.

Social implications

Teachers’ coaching moves, along with the curricular conversations engendered by them, created a culture of learning based on reflection and dialogue between coaching and partner teachers.


Very few studies have been conducted on peer coaching or have addressed the process by which teachers enrolled in graduate programs learned how to engage in collaborative peer coaching.



Jewett, P. and MacPhee, D. (2012), "A dialogic conception of learning: collaborative peer coaching", International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education, Vol. 1 No. 1, pp. 12-23. https://doi.org/10.1108/20466851211231594

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