Intersectional competence captures educators’ awareness of how sociocultural markers of difference simultaneously intersect within the P-12 school context. This article presents findings from a larger mixed-methods sequential exploratory study that established, in part, the theoretical and qualitative basis for validating the Intersectional Competence Measure. The questions asked during the qualitative phase were developed after a review of the literature on intersectionality in special education, collaborative teacher education, and existing measures of preservice teachers’ understanding of diversity. This analysis focuses on the responses of 12 culturally and linguistically diverse special education preservice teachers. When speaking about P-12 students, they tended to position themselves as special educators, privileging their emerging professional identities. They expressed the important role that teacher education played in developing an understanding of sociocultural differences. The participants discussed the complexities of intersecting identities when speaking about their own educational experiences and when considering discriminatory attitudes that persist within minoritized communities.
- preservice teachers
- teacher education
- teachers of color
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health