AbstractAs the last century closed, and a bright new millennium dawned, the concept of ‘student voice’ within education emerged as something to be ‘identified’ and ‘captured’. In effect, it became reified and driven by a raft of government and institutional policies and strategic initiatives; initially within the compulsory sector, but soon followed by the post-compulsory sector as the 2000s moved on. In an increasingly quasi-consumerist environment, a mechanism had emerged with potential to ‘measure’ student satisfaction. Institutions quickly took up the ‘call to arms’, assigning responsibilities to ensure there was evidence of ‘student voice’ engagement; but there was no conversation with the ‘students’ about how this was experienced by them. This concept had become a ‘portmanteau’ term; a ‘catch all’ (Fielding, 2009) competing between two narratives – student voice as democratic and transformational; and student voice as ‘policy’ and strategic initiative. Formal research that could contribute to this discussion has been sparse and this paper takes a critical stance to the literature and policy, exploring the current status of student voice and proposing a research focus that has the potential to involve students in a discussion about how their voice is heard, and for what purpose.
CitationHall, V.M.J. (2017). A tale of two narratives: student voice—what lies before us?. Oxford Review of Education, 43 (2), pp 180-193.
PublisherTaylor & Francis
JournalOxford Review of Education
DescriptionThis is an accepted manuscript of an article published by Taylor and Francis in Oxford Review of Education on 20/12/2016, available online: https://doi.org/10.1080/03054985.2016.1264379 The accepted version of the publication may differ from the final published version.
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