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 'I always wanted to be creative': Post-Access to HE Art and Design Students, Phronesis and Democratic Education. 

Principal focus of the project

This research draws on the findings of a longitudinal study exploring the post-Access to HE student experience, applying the theoretical frameworks of Basil
Bernstein and Aristotle’s notion of phronesis (practical wisdom) to analyse the data. 

What is this about and what were the main findings?

This longitudinal study (3-4 years) used narrative inquiry as the primary method to capture the HE experience of eight post-Access Art & Design students through  a series of semi-structured interviews. The resulting case studies were felt to demonstrate how the institutions as well as the degrees influenced their perceptions of themselves, and their identities as artists, craftspeople and designers. 

Number of participants who worked with the project
Name(s) of authors

Samantha Broadhead

Name of associate programmes

ETF/sunCETT MPhil, Practitioner Research Programme


This thesis explored whether Post-Access students received a democratic education that allowed them to draw upon their own experiences and practical wisdom, in order to  deliberate wisely and act well for themselves and others.

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