The Student Practitioner Constructing a Professional Identity

Helen Simmons, Ruby Oates*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to Book/ReportChapter


This chapter allows the people to build upon our academic studies in early childhood and our developing practice and emerging critical insight and thinking. It explores the background to attempts in England and Wales to professionalise the early childhood workforce, discusses what constitutes an early childhood professional and places this discussion within a historical, cultural, political and social policy context. The chapter incorporates a discussion of contemporary discourses on early childhood professionalism and considers recent research evidence relating to the early childhood workforce’s experiences of the sector and efforts to professionalise it. J. Brannen and P. Moss suggest that the development of childcare reflects a set of power relationships between men and women and includes a gender hierarchy and division of labour. It has noted the historical, political and cultural contexts in which this workforce developed alongside the different influences that have shaped its current position and construction.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Student Practitioner in Early Childhood Studies
Subtitle of host publicationAn Essential Guide to Working with Children
EditorsRuby Oates
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages20
ISBN (Print)9780367369675
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jul 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Early childhood studies
  • Student Practitioner
  • professional identity


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