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Title: Senior women academics in Hong Kong : a life history approach
Authors: Lam, Martha Pik Har
Award date: 2006
Presented at: University of Leicester
Abstract: This study generates a substantive theory of how factors in the life histories of a cohort of eleven senior female academics in Hong Kong contributed to their success in academe. The primary source of data is a series of face-to-face interviews with the respondents. The critical relationships, educational experiences, and life events that contributed to the career development of these women are identified, and these data are supplemented by information about the respondents collected from university websites and the media. Using the constant comparative method, categories are gradually developed to constitute the basis of the proposed substantive theory.;The major outcome of the study is a grounded theory of how the respondents made sense of their attributes and used their dominant attributes to achieve success in their academic careers. A fundamental concept of this 'theory of selective attribution in career trajectory' is the existence of reciprocal relationships among: (i) individual attributes (personal, social, academic); (ii) socialization processes; and (iii) career trajectories. At various stages of the respondents' career trajectories, the interplay between their dominant attributes and their socialization experiences affected their construction (and subsequent redefinition) of their personal orientations---thus producing variations among individuals in their career orientations, strategies, and pathways.;The study finds that the senior female academics in this cohort shared many desirable 'success attributes', which were largely formed and nurtured through various socialization experiences, particularly in the early stages of their lives. In addition to these common features, certain distinguishing factors among individuals within the cohort are identified---forming divergent patterns of dominant attributes in terms of personal identities, values, career orientations, and career strategies. These divergent patterns are utilised to present a threefold typology of senior female academics: (i) 'career academics'; (ii) 'career educators'; and (iii) 'career opportunists'.
Type: Thesis
Level: Doctoral
Qualification: EdD
Rights: Copyright © the author. All rights reserved.
Appears in Collections:Theses, School of Education
Leicester Theses

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