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The future of educational research in the context of the social sciences: A special case?

Journal/Book: Brit J Educ Stud. 1996; 44: 108 Cowley Rd, Oxford, Oxon, England OX4 1JF. Blackwell Publ Ltd. 143-158.

Abstract: The paper examines the future prospects for educational research as conducted in UK universities and colleges of higher education in the Light of current general changes in the organisation,funding and culture of higher education, and in respect of specific changes in the initial and in service training of teachers. It includes a critical examination of the claim made by some educational researchers that their research constitutes a special case, differentiated from other social science and humanities disciplines, both by the routes into educational research and the concerns of those who practise it. It is suggested that the special case argument of the alleged distinctiveness of educational research is largely unjustified, and does not contribute positively to the future prospects of that research or help to ease the relative isolation of educational researchers. Alliances between educational researchers, and those researching in the social sciences are advocated as one strategy which will help both partners. It is also suggested that educational researchers should try to ensure that novel and existing modes of training new researchers such as doctoral programmes, make connections with the training of other beginning researchers, rather than dividing would-be educational researchers from their counterparts in other disciplinary or interdisciplinary areas.

Note: Article R Deem, Univ Lancaster, Cartmel Coll, Fac Social Sci, Lancaster, England

Keyword(s): social sciences; educational research

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