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Publishing practices and the role of publication in the work of academics in the mathematics education research community in England

Craig, Ayshea Joanna (2012) Publishing practices and the role of publication in the work of academics in the mathematics education research community in England. PhD thesis, Institute of Education, University of London.

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This thesis explores the publishing practices of the mathematics education research community in England with the aim of better understanding the ways in which education research is shaped by its social, institutional and political context. This is of vital importance in debates about its goals, nature and future, particularly at a time of rapid change in the higher education sector, with changing funding patterns, a drive for research 'impact' and the association of publication with accountability through the Research Assessment Exercise and the Research Excellence Framework. Mathematics education research is explored on three levels: as a field, following Bourdieu; through its external relations with other areas of research, with institutions, government and society; and through the sense-making of individuals who are part of it. The focus on publications cuts an analytical cross-section/seam across these three levels since publication is intimately bound up in both internal and external struggles. Interviews with academics and social network analysis of publication data are brought together through an analysis of existing literature which examines the autonomy, boundaries, entry conditions and doxa of mathematics education research as a field. Semi-structured interviews with nine academics at English universities were used to reconstruct some of the narrative resources drawn on in making sense of publishing practices. These suggest that positive narratives around the value of publication to the research field itself are lacking. This finding is I inked to the nature of education research as a field of study connected to professional practice, as well as to the link between publication and accountability. Exploratory social network analysis of publication data from fourteen mathematics education research journals over a ten-year period allowed a structural examination of the patterns that the ties formed by collaboration. This analysis was then linked with interview data on individual positioning within the field, suggesting the varied ways in which similar patterns of collaboration arise. Implications are drawn for mathematics education research in the UK and for the role of publication in social sciences research, particularly in a field of study connected with professional practice.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: Thesis: (PhD) University of London Institute of Education, 2012.
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Date Deposited: 31 Oct 2014 12:52
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2015 14:06
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