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Appears in Collections:Faculty of Social Sciences eTheses
Title: Accounting for identity: becoming a chartered accountant
Author(s): Hamilton, Susan Elizabeth
Supervisor(s): Edwards, Richard
Keywords: Accounting education
professional identity
interpretivist approach
Issue Date: Jan-2007
Publisher: University of Stirling
Abstract: This is a qualitative study which draws on the interpretivist tradition to research the processes by which Chartered Accountant (CA) students begin to develop their sense of professional identity. The thesis draws upon recent research on identity in early professional learning, in particular the aspects of becoming and belonging through which people enter into a community of practice. The purpose of the research is to understand the developing professional identity of students of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (CA Students). In order to develop this understanding, data gathered at a number of focus groups at which CA Students were the participants, have been analysed. The transcripts from these focus groups are the primary source of data. This was analysed thematically and metaphorically in order to explore the senses that CA Students were making of their own entry into the accountancy profession. The analysis was used inductively to produce a resulting theory which has developed as a Professional Identity Map of the CA Student (PIMCAS). It elaborates the processes that impact on the developing professional identity of the CA Student. The findings of the research illuminate the processes by which CA Students become and belong, in particular marking the influence of the Training Firm and the Individual Values of the CA Student. The notions of becoming and belonging underpin the stories the CA Students tell of how they understand their developing professional identity. The practical implication of the results of this research for the future training of CAs is finally explored.
Type: Thesis or Dissertation
Affiliation: School of Education

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