Let me entertain you: the ambivalent role of university lecturers as educators and performers

Article


Wong, Billy and Chiu, T. 2017. Let me entertain you: the ambivalent role of university lecturers as educators and performers. Educational Review. 71 (2), pp. 218-233.
AuthorsWong, Billy and Chiu, T.
Abstract

In England, higher education is more marketised than ever before as the difference between students and consumers is increasingly blurred, propelled by the rise in tuition fees. With students demanding more for their money, the role of university lecturers continues to change. This study explores the ways in which lecturers re-evaluate and reconstruct their roles and responsibilities in light of heightened student expectations. We draw on 30 in-depth interviews with lecturers from the social sciences, across two post-1992 universities in England, where tuition fees have tripled since 2012. We focus on lecturers’ views and experiences of student expectations, as well as the support available to students as we shift towards a more consumerist approach in higher education. We find examples of tension between academic values and consumeristic student expectations as lecturers discuss their precarious positions as an educator as well as an entertainer. We believe that the expanding role of lecturers merits an urgent review at the institutional and national level, to promote and ensure clarity of the boundaries and expectations of teaching staff.

JournalEducational Review
Journal citation71 (2), pp. 218-233
ISSN0013-1911
Year2017
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Publisher's version
License
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1080/00131911.2017.1363718
Web address (URL)https://doi.org/10.1080/00131911.2017.1363718
Publication dates
Print06 Sep 2017
Publication process dates
Deposited05 Oct 2017
Accepted31 Jul 2017
Accepted31 Jul 2017
Copyright information© 2017 The authors.
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