Application of repertory grid technique to explore perceptions of expertise held by those working within the profession of conductive education
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AbstractConductive Education (CE), a psycho-pedagogic approach to working with individuals with neuromotor disorders (Sutton,2002), is practised in Statutory and Third Sector health and education provisions within the UK. This fact alone raises the need to explore the role and professional accountability of the conductor as the professional delivering this programme of education. Whilst there is a Professional Body (Professional Conductors Association) (PCA) and a requirement for validated Continuing Professional Development (CPD), there is no benchmark for expertise, or identification of the characteristics, skills and knowledge associated with it. This thesis as an exploratory study of conductors’ perceptions of expertise is the first of its kind to be undertaken with conductors working in the UK. CE, underpinned by both constructivist and constructionist methodologies (Grundtvig, 2012), fits well with Personal Construct Theory (PCT), the chosen methodology for this study. This study is undertaken in two main phases. In the first, Repertory Grid Technique (RGT), as a research method associated with PCT (Hagans, Neimeyer, Goodholm, 2000), is used to interview 20 Conductors working in the UK. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) is used to construct a quantitative analysis of individual grid findings, a process that serves to underpin subsequent thematic analysis. An iterative process of thematic analysis, influenced by Constructivist Grounded Theory (Charmaz, 2006), facilitates synthesis of the conductors’ perceptions of expertise. Expertise is perceived by the conductors to be holistic in nature and comprised of belief, personality, knowledge and skill. With reference to the pragmatist underpinnings of Positive Psychology, (Peterson & Seligman, 2004), items generated in phase one are subsequently used to construct a 92-point questionnaire. This questionnaire as a self-reflective measurement tool serves to complete the aims of this study. This exploratory study broadly fulfils its aims and addresses expressed need for greater accountability, academic justification of practice, desire for professional development and pragmatism within CE (Kozma, 1995). Weaknesses are identified, however the findings of this study serve to raise awareness of expertise, impact practice and conductor training.
PublisherUniversity of Wolverhampton
TypeThesis or dissertation
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