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ERIC Number: EJ1136170
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Apr
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0141-1926
Examining the Epistemology of Impact and Success of Educational Interventions Using a Reflective Case Study of University Bursaries
Harrison, Neil; McCaig, Colin
British Educational Research Journal, v43 n2 p290-309 Apr 2017
This paper engages with the continuing emphasis given to evidence-based policy and "what works" approaches in educational research, highlighting some of the continuing epistemological challenges from a post-positivist perspective. To illustrate these, it uses the case of bursaries awarded by universities to improve outcomes for students from disadvantaged backgrounds as an example of an education intervention designed to address structural inequality. The paper then discusses critical reflections arising from a project commissioned by the Office for Fair Access in England, which aimed to enable universities to evaluate the impact of the bursaries that they award. These reflections provide a lens to explore the limitations of experimental and quasi-experimental designs in complex social fields. The paper concludes that we lack a strong understanding of the relationship between financial and educational disadvantage prior to and during higher education, and this undermines efforts to "prove" that certain interventions will "level the playing field".
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A