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Title: A study into the professional identity of lecturers at a maritime education and training institute operating on the boundary of further and higher education
Author: Bee, Mark Thomas
ISNI:       0000 0004 6347 6321
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2017
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The post-compulsory education sector has undergone major changes in the last twenty years and it is likely that further changes and reorganisations will continue to characterise the sector. The role of the lecturer, in both Further Education (FE) and Higher Education (HE), has been affected by the changes to organisational culture, methods of working and the political climate. The increasing pressures on organisations to achieve financial targets have created a working environment where business, rather than educational, priorities appear to drive organisations. Throughout this period, the professionalism of lecturers in the Further and Higher Education sectors has been debated widely, along with professional identity. The concept of professional identity is complex but is important as it provides a framework for teachers to construct their own ideas of 'how to be', 'how to act' and 'how to understand' their work and their place in society. This research explores how six lecturers in a Maritime Education and Training (MET) Institution, who each had a previous career, express their professional identity and how they negotiate it within a professional community. Whilst there has been much research that investigates the professional identity of educators in FE and HE, this work investigates lecturers who operate at both FE and HE within a single industrial sector, the maritime industry. A local, exploratory case study approach, using interpretative inquiry, was adopted in order to develop understanding of the socio-cultural phenomenon of professional identity within the MET Institution. Data were analysed using an inductive thematic approach and four themes were identified. These were: 'becoming a professional lecturer'; 'my credibility'; 'how I communicate'; and 'my autonomy'. Of particular note was how the participants negotiate their credibility and autonomy within an Institution that operates under commercial and legislative pressures. An established theoretical model was adapted, as a result of the findings from this study, to develop an enhanced understanding of these specific lecturers' professional identity. Whilst this is a small-scale study and no claims of generalisation are being made, the model has some resonance and transferability to other similar groups, such as the teaching and medical professions in the transition from practice to Higher Education posts.
Supervisor: Edwards, Julie-Ann ; Byrne, Jennifer Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available