Who is the newer researcher into higher education? Locating ourselves in shifting terrains

Sally Hancock, Sue Clegg, Barbara Crossouard, Peter Kahn, Saranne Weller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article aims to deconstruct the underpinning tenets of the term ‘newer researcher into higher education’. In recognition of the ambiguities of the term, we begin by questioning the nature of the field(s) of research into higher education (HE). Secondly, we critique the policy discourses associated with the term ‘newer researcher’. Then, with a view to illustrating the over-linear assumptions of such discourses, the article articulates the biographies of practising researchers in this field through narrative reconstructions of the five authors’ own routes as researchers into HE, openly acknowledging their temporalities and serendipitous conditionalities. Finally, we consider the nature of a career in the context of the professionalisation of routes into HE research. Our concluding remarks return us to the question of the status of HE research and to suggestions of positive ways to embrace the dilemmas we face.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-295
Number of pages14
JournalHigher Education Research and Development
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 3 Mar 2016


  • newer researcher
  • early career researchers
  • research into higher education
  • researcher identities


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