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Practitioner perspectives on a franchise FHE relationship: has the policy process produced a new model of HE or just more FE?

Davies, Anthony (2013) Practitioner perspectives on a franchise FHE relationship: has the policy process produced a new model of HE or just more FE? EdD thesis, UNSPECIFIED.

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This thesis examines the experience of two groups of practitioners from three further education (FE) colleges, working in an established franchise partnership with a local higher education (HE) provider. The practitioner groups consisted of lecturers and their programme managers, who mainly taught students from non-traditional entry backgrounds. The research took place within the context of national policy steering, involving both the FE and HE sectors and focused on the impact of policy on practitioners. A critical point to this study was the concept of educational partnerships and the effectiveness of FE colleges as HE providers. Hence the literature from the contextual chapters identifies a set of forces which interact to produce a ‘FHE Institutional environment’ which shapes the practitioners’ FHE experience. A single case study approach was adopted as the major research vehicle, with emphasis on the practitioners’ accounts of their HE teaching experiences. The data was collected over a two year period and consisted of practitioner accounts, vignettes and documentation. Data triangulation involved comparing and contrasting the findings at the case study’s lateral and multi-levels, including referencing to other relevant research projects. My claim to knowledge is that the ‘FHE Institutional environment’ is dominated by a FE professional cultural element, whose predominant norms and values serve to produce a diluted HE experience for their students. Whereby students are largely taught on FE lines, it calls into question the principle that FE colleges can provide comparable HE experiences. The study proposes, therefore, that FE colleges should view their HE provision as being distinct, and provide autonomous units, or designated centres, where a higher education ethos could prevail. The findings also reveal the need for further research on this topic in light of the potential ‘emergent’ HE markets, resulting from the Coalition Government’s proposed sector reforms.

Item Type: Thesis (EdD)
Controlled Keywords: FHE relationships, policy processes, practitioner perspective, diluted educational experiences
Subjects: Departments > Lifelong and Comparative Education
Depositing User: Mr Graeme Naylor
Date Deposited: 25 Oct 2013 11:02
Last Modified: 22 Oct 2015 15:28
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