Pracademic Productive Friction: Boundary Crossing and pressure points

John Mynott, Michaela Zimmatore

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    Purpose
    Productive friction (Ward et al., 2011) can exist as pracademics cross between boundaries of their different identities. Through an exploration of the self-perception of two collaborating pracademics, this paper will consider that organisational and occupational (Evetts, 2009) elements exist that generate professional friction for pracademics.

    Design/methodology/approach
    Using two consecutive Lesson Study cycles as a boundary object, the authors will consider their pracademic identity through a spatial approach. Their perceptions are expressed through semi-structured qualitative interviews and subsequent thematic analysis. This analysis is then explored through Engeström's (2001) learning stages to consider how pracademics interact within the contradictions of their identities and within their context and their work.

    Findings
    Time, purpose, integration and collaboration are all elements that impact on pracademic identities. For each one of these themes, pracademics both experience friction and find resolutions. As these themes vary, there are also moments of unresolved friction, where the pracademics maintain their work based on their enthusiasm alone. Constraints on time and the visibility of pracademic emerge. Exploring these pressure points and their resolutions is key to understanding how pracademics can be further supported by other professionals.

    Originality/value
    While it is not possible to draw large conclusions from the experiences and perceptions of two primary-school-based pracademics, their experiences and understanding of contextual pressure points may facilitate the support of other pracademics and resonant with their experiences, particularly if they are using Lesson Study.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalJournal of Professional Capital and Community
    DOIs
    Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 29 Jul 2021

    Keywords

    • Professional learning
    • collaboration
    • Lesson study
    • professional identity
    • pracademic

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