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Entering Postgraduate Study: A Qualitative Study of a Neglected Transition

Tobbell, Jane and O'Donnell, Victoria (2013) Entering Postgraduate Study: A Qualitative Study of a Neglected Transition. International Journal for Cross-Disciplinary Subjects in Education, 4 (1). ISSN 2042-6364

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In this paper we demonstrate that whilst attention has been given to other educational transitions, the postgraduate experience has been largely ignored. We suggest this may be due to assumptions of expertise in that group. Here we consider literature together with data from a one year, multi-methods study into postgraduate transition. The literature and data suggest that postgraduate students lead complex lives and require targeted support to enable their study. The participants here did not position themselves as expert, confident learners but instead suffered a range of doubts surrounding their study skills and ability to manage the different aspects of their lives. University practices did not always support their struggles. We use communities of practice theory to understand the participatory transition trajectories. We end by acknowledging that this research represents a small percentage of postgraduate students in the particular context of the UK and call for further research in different contexts to develop our understanding of postgraduate transition.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Schools: School of Human and Health Sciences
School of Human and Health Sciences > Centre for Applied Psychological Research
School of Education and Professional Development > Centre of Lifelong Learning and Social Justice > Policy Research Group
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Depositing User: Cherry Edmunds
Date Deposited: 25 Feb 2013 14:01
Last Modified: 28 Aug 2021 20:08


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