I got in trouble last week for suggesting that education was not an academic discipline, and I can see why. For many years, university education departments have been Cinderella organisations in comparison to purportedly loftier spires, and any discussions which raise questions about the status of research in education are therefore sensitive. In stating that I do not see education as a discipline, I do not seek to make any claims about the rigour of research in the field of education or the academic quality of the people who do that research (I am one of them, after all). Rather, I want to establish greater clarity as to what we are doing when we are researching education.
For my argument to be robust, I need to make a distinction between a ‘discipline’ and a ‘field’. I would define a research field as a group of people involved in the study
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