Discourse, identity and socialisation: a textual analysis of the ‘accounts’ of student social workers
This article draws on interview data from student social workers engaged in assessing the needs of adults in Wales, UK. The data were collected as part of a doctoral study conducted by the lead author (Roscoe, 2014), which utilised a form of discourse analysis to explore students’ accounts as ‘texts’. The concept of ‘text’ refers to an account, exchange or narrative and can be interpreted at a number of levels (Halliday, 1978). Texts represent personal, occupational and professional domains of meaning, and through textual analysis, we can grasp the way occupational identity and day-to-day practices are constructed through subjective and institutional sets of knowledge, values and beliefs. This article will draw upon Fairclough’s (1989) method of critical discourse analysis to explore and interpret student texts and, in doing so, will reveal their multilayered character in respect of cultural, social and political influences.
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