The Practice of Professional Doctorates: The Case of a UK-Based Distance DBA

Simpson, Colin G ORCID: 0000-0002-8591-3647 and Sommer, Daniela (2016) The Practice of Professional Doctorates: The Case of a UK-Based Distance DBA. Journal of Management Education, 40 (5). pp. 576-594. doi:10.1177/1052562916652643

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In light of the prominent role of socio-materiality in contemporary social scientific (Nicolini, 2012), and particularly educational (Fenwick, Edwards & Sawchuck, 2011) research, this paper uses two practice-based theories to investigate the experiences of German business management professionals on a UK based DBA delivered in Germany. We specifically take concepts from Cultural Historical Activity Theory (CHAT; Engeström, 2001) and Actor Network Theory (ANT; Latour, 2005; Law, 2009) to explore the evolving relationships between professional and academic identities as revealed in qualitative interviews with individual students and supervising faculty. The discussion underlines the potential of these theories to produce rich understandings of the identity formation of researching professionals. We conclude that professional doctorates should be seen not just as specific forms of advanced professional training, but as complex and indeterminate processes. Findings suggest that earning a professional doctorate often feels like a journey leading to some form of metacognitive shift from a problem-solving mindset to a more critical appreciation of different ways of knowing.

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Business, Computing and Social Sciences
Research Priority Areas: Applied Business & Technology
Depositing User: Colin Simpson
Date Deposited: 11 May 2016 14:29
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2023 11:20

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