Cultivating a collegial turn’ in doctoral education

Kim Brown (2021)

Teaching in Higher Education, 26:6, 759–775


Doctoral students’ understandings of collegiality and their collegial practices warrant specific attention, yet are often addressed as implicit to peer learning and research communities, and ensconced in transferable skills as teamwork’. This article reports on research involving 43 doctoral students at one New Zealand university. 

Using a hybrid methodology that synergised social practice theory and phenomenography, the students participated in focus groups and paired hierarchical card sorting activities. 

The resultant conversations indicated that collegiality among doctoral students can manifest as four types of collegial practices: professional, intellectual, social, and emotional collegiality. 

Collegial practices offer doctoral students purposeful interaction, professional relationships, and respite from some of the emotional challenges of the doctorate. 

Accordingly, I argue that students, academics, and academic developers could adopt a more comprehensive approach than present to cultivate an environment of collegiality among doctoral students, and that collegial practices should be considered integral to doctoral professional development.

Cite this article

Kim Brown (2021) Cultivating a collegial turn’ in doctoral education, Teaching in Higher Education, 26:6, 759–775, DOI: 10.1080/13562517.2019.1680538

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