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Title: An exploration of professional learning, and revised 'internal careers' experienced by higher education teaching practitioners undertaking the journey to the Doctorate in Education
Author: Temple Clothier, Anne-Louise
ISNI:       0000 0004 5993 3155
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2016
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This research explores practitioners’ professional learning, and revised career expectations, as a result of undertaking the EdD. It considers the nature of professionalism, and the institutional conditions that support its development. A new model for conceptual analysis Ecological Positioning Theory is developed, and used. This hybrid model draws on Bronfenbrenner’s Ecological Systems Theory (1979) and Harré and van Langenhove’s Positioning Theory (1999). Ecological Positioning is used to identify the various layers of engagement these EdD students experience in a working context, and articulate the subsequent, and movable, positions within these layers of discourse. Ecological Positioning was used as a framework to prompt semi-structured narratives relating to the macro/exo/meso, and micro-structures inhabited by the practitioners; to assist practitioners articulate their subsequent positions within them, and identify their emotional responses to this positioning. This qualitative data was then themed against the ecological systems identified by the respondents. What emerged in the findings was that for some the psychological contract with their employer (in terms of what is given and what is to be received) had changed, and that these changes were perceived to be impacting across the higher education sector. As a result, the terms of employment, subsequent professional identities of practitioners and ‘what it means to be a teacher and learner’ were also changing. Engagement with the EdD could be viewed as a response to what a higher education practitioner ‘should be’. This research has two main contributions to offer. The first is the presentation, and use, of Ecological Positioning to understand the experiential connections which link the personal, socio-historical and situational contexts in addition to considering the diversity and dynamics of academic life. The second is the time-bound snap shot of the experiences of a specific group of higher education teaching practitioners who, for various reasons, have undertaken an EdD.
Supervisor: Papatsiba, Vassiliki Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ed.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available