Stories from the Tower: Reflections on Changing Professional Roles and Identities in a New University

By:
Mrs Irene Selway
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Higher education in the UK has expanded massively in the past ten or more years. The purpose of higher education is a contested one. What it means to be an academic in the current context is problematic both for some individuals and for higher education organisations. This paper has explored (auto)biographical reflections from a number of academics in a new university who have experienced these changes. Aspects of their own professional identity, changing roles and thoughts about what the purpose of higher education is are included in the paper, which is intended as a starting point for discussion of these issues in the workshop. The paper is an early report on a longer term PhD study. It draws from a number of knowledge bases including oral history, psychology, sociology and educational policy. Storytelling as enquiry is the method employed and the stories are regarded as social constructions of reality.


Keywords: Academic, Professional Identity, Storytelling, UK Higher Education Policy, Expansion
Stream: Knowledge
Presentation Type: Virtual Presentation in English
Paper: Stories from the Tower


Mrs Irene Selway

Principal Lecturer, School of Education and Continuing Studies, University of Portsmouth
UK

Academic sociological background as well as psychology and policy studies. Qualified teacher having worked in primary, secondary and further education. Have worked in higher education for the past 20 years. 10 years experience working in central university academic development/curriculum development. Currently lecturer on Education Studies programmes. Wide experience in curriculum development in collaboration with the community. External Examiner for a number of access programmes. Currently researching the changing role of the academic in the context of mass higher education and the contested nature of higher education.. Using story telling as enquiry method. Interested in professional self identity and how it changes over time and the implications this has for the practitioner.

Ref: H05P0080