The potential of communities of learning for dual career phd programs a case study: Transformative Perspectives and Processes in Higher Education

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademic


In recent years, both the demand for and the supply of graduate education have blossomed throughout higher education. While this development can be perceived as beneficial for universities and postgraduate research institutes, an increasing number of scholars have pointed towards the potential challenges it presents. More specifically, Pearson (1999) argued that the “massification of graduate education’ (p. 270) has not only provided opportunities, but also created difficulties in a system previously accustomed to offering doctoral education to a relatively small set of participants. Similarly, research is no longer an activity that is merely conducted by a selected amount of individuals within specialized institutions. Instead, it has become part of employees’ normal activities during their everyday working environment (Lee and Boud 2003). It can be argued that this trend is paired with a growing pressure on employees to learn continuously throughout their careers. In other words, employees need to update their knowledge and skills constantly in order to face the challenges and tasks of today’s turbulent economic environment effectively (Gherardi and Nicolini 2000). As a result, a growing number of employees are returning to uni for doctoral research, which will provide them with “specialist knowledge and research skills” (Pearson et al. 2004, p. 348) and thereby enable them to achieve better results in their careers. Additionally, the aim of professional doctorates is often not to start an academic career, but rather to support their. © Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTransformative Perspectives and Processes in Higher Education
Number of pages23
ISBN (Print)9783319092478, 9783319092461
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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