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Title: A-level learning cultures in further education : an ethnographic study of learning and teaching
Author: Curtis, William Jesse.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3400 8607
Awarding Body: University of the West of England, Bristol,
Current Institution: University of the West of England, Bristol
Date of Award: 2007
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The study examines the learning cultures of A-level within the contexts of further education. By focusing on the settings between institutional structures and individual perceptions, it explores the shared cultural spaces that students and lecturers inhabit. It is argued that these spaces both shape and are shaped by the experiences, interpretations and actions of lecturers and students, as they construct, negotiate and maintain their college identities. The thesis is based on eighteen months of ethnographic research in a further education college in the south-west of England. The researcher had extensive knowledge of this college, having worked there for five years prior to commencing the study. Data was gathered through a range of methods: group and individual semi-structured interviews (with a core sample of eighteen students and lecturers) constituted the main source of data, while formal and informal observations, student surveys and analysis of college documents, provided stimulus, context and further data. The study is influenced by postmodern theorisations and the notion of contingent fields is developed to understand the fragmented, transient, fluid and plural cultural spaces that students and lecturers inhabit. Making extensive use of interview data, dimensions of learning cultures are outlined and discussed. Six characters of studentship and four characters of lectureship are identified in the data and these are examined in relation to changing FE contexts and notions of hopeful and fearful learning and teaching settings. The thesis concludes by exploring the concepts of hopeful learning cultures and learning identities and by considering what policy makers, college managers, students and lecturers might do to encourage these cultures and identities to develop in A-level and further education.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available