The academisation of emerging professions: Implications for universities, academics and students

Celina McEwen, Franziska Trede

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    10 Citations (Scopus)


    Although Australian universities have delivered professional education alongside liberal education since their inception, the more recent introduction of emerging professions into universities' curricula indicates a greater blurring of the boundaries within the higher education sector, where universities are increasingly delivering courses formerly within the realm of technical or further education colleges. This vocationalisation of universities is in response to an imposed economic imperative, and neo-liberal rhetoric. In this article, the authors discuss some of the reasons and consequences of the academisation of emerging professions for universities, their academics and students. They argue that by lacking a deliberate approach and allowing a blurring of the lines between liberal, professional and vocational education, universities run the risk of failing to deliver on their promise of employability and social inclusion. The authors also suggest that the current situation can, however, provide an opportunity for universities to educate a deliberate professional by adopting a pedagogical approach that seeks to develop undergraduates' technical skills and knowledge, as well as an understanding of when and how to align, innovate or oppose the legitimised practices, cultures and identities of their chosen profession or occupation.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)145-154
    Number of pages10
    JournalPower and Education
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 2014


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