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A Discourse Analytical study that explores the discursive constructions of therapeutic practice within educational psychology

Stiff, Charlotte (2013) A Discourse Analytical study that explores the discursive constructions of therapeutic practice within educational psychology. DEdCPsy thesis, University of Sheffield.

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Abstract

This Discourse Analytical (DA) study explores the discursive constructions of therapeutic practice within educational psychology. These constructions are taken from the perspective of fifteen Educational Psychologists (EPs) who are new to the profession. Drawing on data from four focus groups, comprising of three to four participants, I used Discursive Psychology (DP) to analyse the psychological themes emerging from participant talk. My analysis indicated that five interpretative repertoires were used to talk about therapeutic EP work. These included: ‘therapeutic-asskilled’,‘therapeutic-as-eclectic’, ‘therapeutic-as-threatening’,‘therapeutic-as-limited’ and ‘therapeutic-as-emerging’. A number of discursive devices such as disclaiming, excusing and blaming were also used. Participants were able to take up varying subject positions in relation to therapeutic practice, presenting themselves as both passive and active agents. When talking about therapeutic work participants positioned themselves as confused, reluctant and unconfident; as well as valuable, skilled and motivated practitioners. I concluded that the relational aspects of therapeutic EP practice are as important as the technical aids or tools used to facilitate this type of work. I have suggested that the uncertainty that exists around therapeutic work might reflect the uncertainty of participants’ emerging EP identity. My research indicates that EPs, who are new to profession, have the sufficient agency to negotiate therapeutic practices with educational psychology. However, this will require further investment from leaders within the profession.

Item Type: Thesis (DEdCPsy)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Social Sciences (Sheffield) > School of Education (Sheffield)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.581649
Depositing User: Miss Charlotte Stiff
Date Deposited: 18 Sep 2013 14:09
Last Modified: 03 Oct 2016 10:46
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/4449

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