Troy Bartman

Date of Award

January 2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Teaching & Learning

First Advisor

Bonni Gourneau


A wide range of ages in teachers exist in the field of education. New teachers from Generation Z is one specific category that has received little attention. Who are these new teachers? What experiences have they grown up with being from this generation? What might we learn about them that can help us offer better support, training, and guidance to ultimately create better learning environments for students? The purpose of this study was to gain a deeper understanding of the perspectives that new teachers from Generation Z have on teaching, learning, and teacher development. As the newest generation entering the teaching profession, it is important to ensure that schools, districts, and educational leaders learn to adapt in order to support the specific developmental needs of the newest teaching professionals. Working with new age teachers and learners requires innovative approaches that reflect their upbringing. This research recognizes specific qualities and distinctions that characterize Generation Z and ascertain how this might impact these beginning teachers. This study also involved the connection between the specific learning theories of Self-authorship and Self-determination and how these theories relate to the development of new teachers from Generation Z. A general recognition of the current practices in the Teacher Education Programs and Teacher Induction Programs in the province of Alberta serves as a reference point and provides context for this study. Being able to support teachers from Generation Z by understanding generational nuances should help to better personalize teacher development opportunities for Generation Z teachers and those who work with this specific cohort. School leaders, with evidence from this research, will be exposed to a deeper understanding of the necessary professional supports that Generation Z teachers suggest would help their age group. School districts will have current data to leverage the construction of teacher induction programs, as well as adopt more responsive professional development initiatives. Most importantly, K-12 students will benefit from having the most novice and vulnerable teachers supported by professional learning opportunities that appropriately align with their learning needs. The overall goal of this narrative qualitative research was to utilize the personal stories of Generation Z teachers in order to uncover both their general and specific learning needs during preservice training and during their first years of teaching.