A sociological study of emotional labour amongst lecturers in further and higher education in Scotland.
This research aims to explore emotional labour amongst lecturers in Higher and Further education in Scotland, with a particular focus on issues of structural support to enable FE and HE practitioners to fulfil their duties in facilitating learning, teaching and research. There is plenty of evidence to suggest that writing and publishing are a priority when it comes to a successful academic career; lecturers do not only teach students, but are also required to find the time to write, create and mark assessments, support an ever-growing number of students, as well as manage their own personal lives (Antoniou & Moriarty, 2008). There are many facilities available for providing academic and pastoral support for students within higher education, including counsellors at the place of study or support groups. Many students also go to their lecturers with their personal trouble, although there are students who wish to keep their issues private, for fear of stigmatisation (Quinn, Wilson, Macintyre & Tinklin, 2009). So, in the context of evidence which suggests a degree of emotional management for lecturers in FE and HR, what support do lecturers receive and what strategies to they employ in the management of their emotions? This research is underpinned by relativist ontology and subjectivist epistemology which further informed the theoretical perspective chosen for this research, which is phenomenology. All these components together helped to determine the methodology and phenomenological enquiry was chosen. Convenience sampling was used to gather participants and semi-structured interviews were carried out to gather data. Once complete, thematic analysis was used to interpret the narratives provided by the participants in order to complete this research process. The main themes expected to emerge from this data are; A Culture of Overwork, Organisational and Colleague Support for Staff and Students, and Well-being and Relationships. These themes will provide valuable data on the emotional labour used and experienced by lecturers of Higher and Further education in Scotland.