Article thumbnail
Location of Repository

Exploring transition to postgraduate study: shifting identities in interaction with communities, practice and participation

By Jane Tobbell, Victoria O'Donnell and Maria Zammit


There has been relatively little research to date that has explored the transition to postgraduate study. This paper reports findings from a project (funded by the UK's Higher Education Academy) that sought to address this gap. The research project was ethnographic and explored university practice and student participation in five UK universities. A significant emergent feature of the research was that a multiplicity of identities construct student experience and contribute to student transition. This finding provides support for learning theory that argues for inextricable links between learning and wider social identities. Moreover, the process of negotiating an academic identity in light of wider experience and university practices emerged as a key factor in understanding transition together with the imperative for independent study, which was a particularly powerful practice that necessitated complex identity negotiations in order to enable full participation in the university community of practice

Topics: LB, LB2300
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Year: 2010
DOI identifier: 10.1080/01411920902836360
OAI identifier:
Download PDF:
Sorry, we are unable to provide the full text but you may find it at the following location(s):
  • (external link)
  • (external link)
  • Suggested articles

    To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.