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Academic Identities: Voices from the Edge

By Denis Feather


This thesis presents the perspectives of lecturers delivering Higher\ud Education Business Courses (HEBCs) in Further Education Colleges (FECs)\ud within the Yorkshire and Humber region of the North of England during the\ud period 2005-2007. In particular, it focuses on issues of academic identity\ud for those teaching HEBCs in FECs. The study is based on data amassed via\ud a questionnaire survey; a series of in-depth semi-structured interviews\ud conducted with 26 lecturers, from focus group evidence, from an\ud autobiographical experience of teaching HEBCs in an FEC, and is informed\ud by a critical engagement with the literature. The thesis provides a brief\ud historical overview of both higher and further education from its\ud qualitative ethnographic derived account of lecturers’ narratives, whilst\ud exploring concepts related to academic identity, professionalism,\ud scholarship, institutional cultures and ethos, different resources, and\ud changing identities. The study reveals role conflicts, anxieties, career\ud crises, and individual dissatisfactions that are sharply out of kilter with\ud official discourses. It suggests that many of those teaching HEBCs in FECs\ud share concerns about their ability to deliver high quality education in the\ud context of what they generally experience as a marginalised, and\ud relatively materially deprived domain of learning, which is undermined by\ud associated policy and institutional framewor

Topics: LB2300, L1
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