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Teaching After Witnessing a School Shooting

Echoes of Gunfire

Edward Mooney, Jr.

Imagine the hours and weeks after you've witnessed a school shooting. You run the emotional gamut between disorientation and severe anxiety. When you return to the classroom, you're unsure how to cope. Your classroom used to be a safe space; is it still? In this book, the experience of two teachers before, during and after they witnessed school shootings are analyzed to determine the effects of these incidents on their lives. In one case, a teacher who observed a shooting of one student by another, struggled with severe Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Her issues, along with actions by school administration, led to her psychological disability. In the second case, at a different school, another teacher watched a gunman randomly firing at students; he was able to continue teaching. A comparison helps to understand the psychological and organizational factors that affect educators who witnessed a school shooting.

This book would be critical in courses training school administrators, and for those teaching graduate research courses. In addition, this would be useful for mental health professionals and emergency responders seeking to get a glimpse into what teachers who witness school shootings are going through.

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Chapter 16. A Question About Coding



“I get it. Again, another question comes to mind!” Janice exclaimed.

“And what is this one?” I asked.

“How the heck do you look through a transcript and try to find patterns, or clues?”

“That process is called ‘coding,’ ” I responded.

An Answer

Data Coding

Data coding is described as the process in which “the researcher identifies one open category to focus on (called the ‘core phenomenon’), and then goes back to the data and create categories around the core phenomenon” (Creswell, 2012, p. 64). It is important to note “There is no single right way to analyze qualitative data.”

The methodology selected for this first cycle was in vivo coding, which is often used to “prioritize and honor the participant’s voice” (Saldana, 2009, p. 74).

Axial Coding

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