So I don’t forget

I was thinking about doing an email for my supervisor and then thought stuff it I’ll put it here so I don’t lose and it forms part of the history. That means this post is rambling rather than anything useful so feel free to ignore (unless you’re David when we’re in our meeting).

When working on a question, how much can I assume? For example, can I ask “Is the commodification of HE due to policy decisions?” or do I have to ask “Has HE moved from being a public good to a private and if so, can that be linked to policy?”? In the first one I’m assuming everyone agrees that commodification is occurring. In the second I don’t. These are example questions, not real ones.

We have discussed the three lenses of the literature review being the Australian experience, the business course experience and then the politics. I don’t think this is working for me. I think the lit review needs to be about the global experience of HE, mainly the US and UK, then the Australian experience, then the expectation of HE from stakeholders. I think that I’m moving towards how everyone has an opinion and is angry about the HE legislation, but that no one agrees on what HE should actually be so commodification has become the main driver of HE by default. This means I don’t really want to look at business degrees at all. But I’m still looking at the business of HE. I think I’m heading to:

“How has the funding of HE in Australia over time changed and has this impacted on the educational purpose?”

This opens the door to different perspectives of HE from industry, ivory tower folks, citizen construction, policy makers and perhaps at some point people.

So for the lit review the rationale to get to discourse theory is that everyone has their position, but no one really knows what that is and while everyone is arguing over the same thing but not realising it, commodification is rolling through and becoming the main driver and maybe that’s okay. I need to do discourse theory as the answer lies in stopping people arguing over what their position is, and start talking about what is actually happening. Thoughts? Basically this is our March meeting as well as the unit requirements.


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