Communities of Practice and the Mediation ofTeachers' Responses to Standards-based Reform


  • Chrysan Gallucci University of California, Santa Barbara



Teacher Attitudes, Standards, Educational Change


This paper evaluates the usefulness of a sociocultural approach for analyzing teachers’ responses to the professional learning demands of standards-based reform policies. A policy-oriented case study of the practice of six elementary teachers who worked in two high poverty schools in a demographically changing district in the state of Washington is summarized. Key findings of that study conclude that communities of teaching practice are sites for teacher learning and are mediators of teachers’ responses to standards-based reform. Characteristics of the communities of practice, including their relative strength and openness (to learning), influence the degree to which teachers work out negotiated and thoughtful responses to policy demands. The present paper discusses the efficacy of Wenger’s (1998) theory of learning for the study of policy to practice connections.


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Author Biography

Chrysan Gallucci, University of California, Santa Barbara

Chrysan Gallucci is an Assistant Researcher in the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her research focuses on educational policy—specifically, the connections between K-12 and Teacher Education reform policies and professional learning; leadership and learning; and the application of practice-oriented, sociocultural learning theories to issues of professional learning in organizational contexts. She also works with SRI, International on a study of policy issues related to the teaching profession in the state of California. Her other professional experiences include classroom teaching (both general and special education) and work with K-12 schools and school districts on systems change and professional development projects.




How to Cite

Gallucci, C. (2003). Communities of Practice and the Mediation ofTeachers’ Responses to Standards-based Reform. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 11, 35.