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date: 29 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The point of departure for this chapter is the long-running methodological debate concerning the separability or inseparability of person and context in the analysis of human functioning. The intention is to discuss one means of bringing together the psychology that has developed in the wake of Vygotsky's early twentieth-century writing with the sociology of pedagogy developed by Basil Bernstein. The chapter also draws on methodological developments emanating from a 4-year study of professional learning in multi-agency services. The analysis provides a way of examining the sequential and contingent emergence of new forms of understanding in specific institutional settings. This provides one approach to research engagement with the processes of mutual shaping that occur between persons acting and the institutional settings in which they act.

Keywords: methodology, separability, bernstein, vygotsky, institutional modality

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