Conceptualising doctoral researcher training through Bernstein's theoretical frameworks

Crossouard, Barbara (2013) Conceptualising doctoral researcher training through Bernstein's theoretical frameworks. International Journal for Researcher Development, 4 (2). pp. 72-85. ISSN 2048-8696

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The purpose of this paper is to present a theoretically-informed analysis of an exploratory study which included a focus on postdoctoral researchers' views of their training needs.

The wider mixed-methods study was focused on post-doctoral career trajectories at a time of ongoing policy interest in doctoral education. Bernstein's theoretical perspectives are used to illuminate the data, particularly his concepts of classification and regionalisation.

Respondents' reflections on their doctoral training showed a much stronger appreciation of training which was based in disciplinary practices, even if these were subject to regionalisation, as opposed to more generic professional skills training.

Research limitations/implications
The small scale and exploratory nature of the study is recognised, as well as the need for more independent research in this area.

Practical implications
The study has implications for the nature of the training provided as part of doctoral education. First, it is argued that this should include more explicit discussion of policy shifts relating to doctoral education. Second, rather than being glossed over in the imposition of generic competency frameworks (conceptualised through Bernstein as a generic performance mode), researcher training should attend closely to the social and cultural base of the skills and practices of different regions of knowledge production, at the same time as recognising these to be fluid and dynamic.

Overall, while recognised as exploratory, the study aims to contribute insights on doctoral graduates' perspectives on researcher training as well as suggesting the usefulness of Bernstein's theoretical framework for understanding the reconstruction of doctoral education in the UK.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Doctoral education, Doctoral training, Generic performance mode, Researcher development, Researcher skills, Researcher training, Roberts skills training, Bernsteinian analysis
Schools and Departments: School of Education and Social Work > Education
Subjects: H Social Sciences
L Education
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher education
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher education > LB2371 Graduate education
Depositing User: Pascale Fanning-Tichborne
Date Deposited: 12 Mar 2015 15:29
Last Modified: 12 Mar 2015 15:29
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