Towards a Research Training Curriculum: What, why, how, who?

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McWilliam, Erica
Singh, Parlo
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2002
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Our purpose in this paper is to investigate the ways in which the work of research higher degree supervision is being reshaped from within and outside universities. Our interest is in the means by which new 'content' and 'process' knowledge - and thus a new set of pedagogical tasks and relationships - are being configured in the field of higher degree research. The outcomes of research training have traditionally been products of a one-on-one supervisory relationship, that is, academic apprentice-to-disciplinary mentor. This is especially the case in the fields of arts/humanities. Any 'curriculum' necessary to such a model has been both implicit and at the discretion of the disciplinary 'master'. The paper maps the reasons that this model is being challenged, the policy and other mechanisms that are representing this challenge, the new modes of conduct and the new knowledge being produced by these policies and mechanisms, and the new pedagogical identities being forged as a result. We argue that the know-how of the academic supervisor is no longer coterminous with research training as 'expert' work. While disciplinary knowledge will continue to be important, and while one-on-one supervisory relationships will remain, they are unlikely to dominate the new higher degree research landscape. New modes of knowledge production and new organisational arrangements are demanding different knowledge - less certain, less discipline specific - and different work - more team-based, more trans-disciplinary, and more accountable.

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Australian Educational Researcher

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29

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3

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© 2002 Australian Association for Research in Education . This is the author-manuscript version of this paper. Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal website for access to the definitive, published version.

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Education

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