The Open UniversitySkip to content

Narrating unfinished business: adult learners using credit transfer to re-engage with higher education

Pegg, Ann and Di Paolo, Terry (2013). Narrating unfinished business: adult learners using credit transfer to re-engage with higher education. Studies in Continuing Education, 35(2) pp. 209–223.

Full text available as:
PDF (Accepted Manuscript) - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader
Download (432Kb) | Preview
DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Link:
Google Scholar: Look up in Google Scholar


This paper seeks to advance our understanding of the credit transfer phenomenon in the UK, specifically how students draw on a credit as a form of institutional cultural capital. Drawing on interviews with twenty-six part-time mature learners this paper examines the progressive and retrospective orientations to study that surfaced in students’ accounts of credit transfer and their life-long learning journeys. A common theme of “unfinished business” appeared to dominate these accounts and a narrative-oriented analysis of the findings revealed the role of credit transfer in enabling students to complete varied personal projects or forms of “unfinished business”. The findings of this work suggest that in an increasingly complex higher education market there is a need to understand students’ strategic use of the credit they accumulate. In particular, this paper explores how credit transfer features in the narratives of students’ successful learning journeys

Item Type: Journal Article
Copyright Holders: 2012 Taylor & Francis
ISSN: 1470-126X
Keywords: credit transfer; higher education; lifelong learning; narrative; cultural capital
Academic Unit/Department: Other Departments > Office of PVC Academic
Centre for Inclusion and Collaborative Partnerships (CICP)
Interdisciplinary Research Centre: Centre for Research in Education and Educational Technology (CREET)
Item ID: 34624
Depositing User: Ann Pegg
Date Deposited: 21 Nov 2012 13:58
Last Modified: 27 Jul 2014 07:39
Share this page:


Scopus Citations

Actions (login may be required)

Policies | Disclaimer

© The Open University   + 44 (0)870 333 4340