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Record identifier : 565399
Personal Name - Primary Intelectual Responsibility : Bryceland, Christy
Title and statement of responsibility : From "gunslingers" to "policed professionals": The historical and institutional development of professional psychology in Alberta [Thesis]
Publication, Distribution,Etc. : University of Calgary (Canada, 2006
Language of the Item : eng
Dissertation of thesis details and type of degree : Ph.D
Body granting the degree : , University of Calgary (Canada
Summary or Abstract : Psychology has often been criticized as an individualizing, depoliticizing discipline that maintains the status quo of the current social structure rather than producing broad-based social change. Beginning with the expectation that regulation might be one reason for this problem, this dissertation considers the constraints that are placed on psychologists by their professional regulation. Taking up the case of psychology in Alberta, a three-pronged approach was used, including interviews with practitioners, interviews with regulators and archival research. The analysis was broadly informed by the methods of institutional ethnography and critical discourse analysis. The goal was to trace from the experience of the individual psychologist to the institutional context, trying to understand the social processes at work within professional regulation. As a context for Alberta psychology's development, the professionalization of psychology in North America was considered. Most jurisdictions are now remarkably similar in their professional entry standards and legislation. As part of the professionalization agenda, psychologists have actively sought this homogeneity. While there is a drive from the profession to develop regulation in particular ways, there are also many external factors that influence these developments. These include large scale initiatives to gain control of the professions by government, often motivated by the ideologies of corporate capitalism and managerialism. Within the Alberta context, the issues of legislative change and increasing professional entry standards were reviewed to demonstrate the multiple influences on regulation. From the practitioners' standpoint, regulation appears double-edged. On the one hand, psychologists denied that regulation was constraining. On the other hand, many participants relied on regulation as a discursive resource in defense against the multiple constraints they experience within institutional settings, including increased clinical pressures and erosion of professional identity. It is argued that Alberta psychologists are not in a good position to criticize their professional regulation, because they need it as a means of resistance: regulation provides a limited means of defense against erosion of their limited professional power. While it is a power that is used to attain status and income, it is also a power that is often used with good intention: to do the work of caring..
Topical Name Used as Subject : Canadian history, Science history, Psychotherapy
Information of biblio record : TL
 
 
 
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