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Title: Identification of the factors shaping archival education in Thailand and an investigation into the effectiveness of that education in preparing graduates for the archival workplace
Author: Poolsatitiwat, W.
ISNI:       0000 0004 6422 8194
Awarding Body: University of Liverpool
Current Institution: University of Liverpool
Date of Award: 2017
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The thesis identifies the factors shaping archival education in Thailand and explores the effectiveness of that education in preparing graduates to work professionally in the Thai archival workplace. Since at present there is only one formal archival teaching programme in Thailand, which is a postgraduate course taught at Silpakorn University, the thesis focuses on this programme. In order to achieve the research aims, multiple methods comprising a literature study and semi-structured interviews were selected as appropriate methods to collect data in three main aspects namely: (1) the current context of archives and archivists in Thailand; (2) the implementation of four elements of professional learning proposed by Reid et al. (2011) in the archival programme; and (3) the impact of the Thai higher educational regulations on the Silpakorn programme in terms of its ability to prepare professional archivists to meet the needs of the Thai archival workplace. The data collected from semi- structured interviews are analysed by cross referencing this with the data derived from the literature study. This triangulated analysis verifies the trustworthiness of the resultant data. The data from interview with nine academics and nine students who take part in the programme, and 30 people featured in four case studies, in conjunction with the literature study identifies that the definition and functions of Thai archives, including the roles, responsibilities, qualifications, and professional status of Thai archivists, differs from the western context. The programme is also unable to prepare its graduates to work as professional archivists while fulfilling the needs of Thai archives because adopting a western-based archival curricula (UK model) and transferring archival knowledge and principles derived from the western (UK) context is not applicable to the Thai context, resulting in graduates’ inability to work professionally in the Thai archival workplace. National regulations also have influenced the programme to offer an academic degree rather than preparing professional archivists and results in the programme’s inability to implement the four elements of professional learning. In addition, a non-requirement of archivists who have an archival degree to work in Thai archives results in the decreasing demand to study in this programme and affects the identity of Thai archivists. Since most of Thai archivists do not regard themselves as archivists and Thailand lacks both archival scholars and an archival professional body to develop archival knowledge and profession, the professional status and identity of Thai archivists are unrecognised. To tackle these failures, the thesis recommends decreasing three tensions which are: (1) providing an academic degree or developing professional programme; (2) understanding the role of professional archivists or fulfilling the needs of Thai archives; and (3) ignoring the identity of Thai archivists or improving their status. The thesis argues that these three tensions cannot be dissolved unless Thailand needs professional archivists and the Thai archival institutions recognise the benefits of having a more educated archival workforce.
Supervisor: Procter, M. ; Willis, P. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral