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Title: Doing it differently : an experiential account of personal and professional change during the process of researching 'peer support' with pupils in a 'BESD' setting
Author: Chilokoa, Mary
ISNI:       0000 0004 5918 6444
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2015
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This is a study of researcher ‘experience’; an experience of research which significantly changed the practitioner and her ideas of professional practice. The study originally started off with one focus, and then developed into something additional and different. My initial interest was in how the use of ‘peer support’ might have specific benefits for pupils identified as having social, emotional and behavioural needs, and involved training a group of boys in a specialist ‘BESD’ provision, in peer support skills, as reading mentors. As the research process unfolded, however, it became apparent that the boys’ journey was in fact running parallel to a journey being undertaken by me, the researcher working with them, which necessitated a deliberate move to the ‘I’ position on my part, as the research took a different course. Using a narrative and autoethnographic methodology, informed by social constructionist perspectives, I seek to illuminate and give space to important, but largely unacknowledged, aspects of professional life, in which the sometimes challenging interface between the ‘personal’ and the ‘professional’ is explored, and the significance of the relationships we establish as practitioners, with our ‘participants’ and with ourselves and our own histories, is placed as central, not peripheral, to the practice itself. The implications for the approaches and processes employed by educational psychologists in work with and study of young people, the ‘what’ and the ‘how’ of the psychology that is engaged in, are also explored, with the specific proposal of moving towards an idea of a socially, politically and philosophically ‘engaged' practice, which offers value both to the professional relationship, but also ultimately to the development and utility of the profession itself.
Supervisor: Billington, Tom Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ed.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available