Variations in Enabling Educators’ academic identities: A phenomenographic study of Enabling Educators’ experiences in pathway programs

PhD Thesis


Crank, Russell. 2022. Variations in Enabling Educators’ academic identities: A phenomenographic study of Enabling Educators’ experiences in pathway programs. PhD Thesis Doctor of Philosophy . University of Southern Queensland. https://doi.org/10.26192/wq766
Title

Variations in Enabling Educators’ academic identities: A phenomenographic study of Enabling Educators’ experiences in pathway programs

TypePhD Thesis
AuthorsCrank, Russell
Supervisor
1. FirstA/Pr Ann Dashwood
2. SecondWarren Midgley
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
Qualification NameDoctor of Philosophy
Number of Pages393
Year2022
PublisherUniversity of Southern Queensland
Place of PublicationAustralia
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.26192/wq766
Abstract

Enabling Educators are important stakeholders in widening university participation. However, little is known about these academics, a knowledge gap that contributes to their marginalisation and lack of recognition in higher education. This thesis uses a phenomenographic study of variations in Enabling Educators’ academic identities to explore their experiences and understandings of working in pathway programs. Data was collected via 31 open-ended questionnaires and 14 semi-structured interviews with Enabling Educators across the sector. Data analysis generated five qualitatively distinct variations in Enabling Educator Identity (EEI): equity advocate, student academic developer, empowerer, carer and educator. Individually, each variation in EEI represents a critical higher education strategy that Enabling Educators contribute to pathway programs. Collectively, the five variations in EEI represent a comprehensive, holistic response to widening university participation. The study further generated a description of Enabling Educators as pathway academics who are student-focused educators teaching non-traditional students essential academic capabilities to improve equity in university participation. The study made several recommendations regarding the identities and work of Enabling Educators. Firstly, Enabling Educators be afforded greater recognition and validation as academics. Secondly, Enabling Educators’ workloads require adjustment to reflect the time intensity and emotional burden of working in pathway programs. Thirdly, greater support be afforded to developing research and a research agenda in enabling education that explores enabling pedagogies and curriculum. Finally, that the funding, recognition and support of pathway programs be prioritised and continued.

Keywordsenabling; equity; pathway education; academic identity; phenomenography
Contains Sensitive ContentDoes not contain sensitive content
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020390303. Higher education
Public Notes

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Byline AffiliationsAcademic Affairs Administration
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