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The Crisis of Practice: Deleuze and the Idea of Learning Development in UK Higher Education

Eyre, Jason; (2020) The Crisis of Practice: Deleuze and the Idea of Learning Development in UK Higher Education. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Learning Development is an emerging field of practice in UK higher education aimed primarily at supporting student learning in response to massification and widening participation within the sector. As a nascent profession in its own right, attempts have been made to define Learning Development in order to confer recognition as a distinctive branch of educational practice. This thesis aims to contribute to an understanding of Learning Development and the higher educational milieu in which it operates in a way that resists formal definitions that may limit and circumscribe the activities of its practitioners. Instead of documenting the activities associated with Learning Development and identifying common generic features (a generalised definition), the present thesis uses a narrative device to focus on practices in the particular case. It argues that reflexive awareness of Learning Development practices arises in response to various crises of normativity (crises of expectation, legitimacy, and conduct) whenever habituated routines are disrupted. An ‘ontology of becoming’ as developed by Gilles Deleuze provides an alternative lens through which to conceptualise Learning Development. An elusive and transcendent ideal of Learning Development can be avoided in favour of a ‘method of dramatisation’, which focuses on particular cases of practice in order to identify the relational capacities structuring the way Learning Development actually manifests. Learning Development can thus be conceptualised as consisting of the practitioner’s relation to learners, the institution, and the disciplines. In this view, the normative crises identified previously can be seen as an expression of what Learning Development practices tend towards rather than as failures of practice. Hence, a more positive Idea (Deleuze) of Learning Development emerges, one that permits a creative reconceptualisation of its possibilities. Viewing Learning Development in terms of its relational tendencies permits a creative exploration of how those relations might play out in practice.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: The Crisis of Practice: Deleuze and the Idea of Learning Development in UK Higher Education
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2020. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Education, Practice and Society
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10102621
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