Encyclopedia of International Higher Education Systems and Institutions

Living Edition
| Editors: Pedro Nuno Teixeira (Editor-in-Chief), Jung-Cheol Shin (Editor-in-Chief)

Academic Identity in Higher Education

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-017-9553-1_300-1

General Definition

Traditionally associated with academic freedom, academic identity is today defined as lying at the crossroad of individual life course experiences and higher education specific contexts, and thus as an increasingly plural identity.


Defining Academic Identity

Definitions of academic identity in higher education are limited with a relative paucity of research in this area (Clarke et al. 2014). Those definitions that do exist tend to explore concepts related to professional identity in general rather than exploring academic identity in higher education. For example, Sachs (2001: 153) states that professional identity refers to “a set of externally ascribed attributes that are used to differentiate one group from another… It provides a shared set of attributes, values and so on so that enable the differentiation of one group from another.” In a review of the...
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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University College CorkCorkIreland
  2. 2.University College DublinDublinIreland