Sonography culture : attitudes and opinions towards the introduction of the graduate sonographer

MITCHELL, Pauline (2018). Sonography culture : attitudes and opinions towards the introduction of the graduate sonographer. Doctoral, Sheffield Hallam University.

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Aim(s) The project aimed to explore the culture of sonography through the interpretation of the attitudes, opinions and perceptions of a sample of practicing sonographers concerning the possible introduction of the graduate sonographer role. The participants’ insights to their working world provided new understandings of the research question “What are the individual attitudes and opinions of sonographers towards the role of the graduate sonographer?” Method A qualitative study was undertaken in two phases using a constructivist methodology within a critical theory framework. Phase one aimed to explore participant attitudes and opinions toward the implementation of the graduate sonographer role. Phase two aimed to explore how the working world may have influenced the participants’ opinions and attitudes. Data was gathered from ten purposively selected participants using semi-structured interviews. Findings Thematic analysis identified main themes for each phase: protectionism, power and career frameworks were found to be replicated in both phases. The shortage of sonographers and the increasing demand for ultrasound services created an imbalance that had put sonographers in a very powerful position; able to directly influence sonographer working practice, education and remuneration. The interpretations of the data suggested that the initial power base of sonographers was perceived to have been achieved through a culture of occupational imperialism (delegation down). However, as the occupational group became established and a workforce crisis deepened, a culture of usurpation and protectionism evolved within sonography. Conclusions A differentiation between graduate sonographer clinical skills, assessed by competence, and advanced practice sonographer complex clinical skills, defined by capability has the potential to create a more inclusive, yet clearly delineated, career structure. This would acknowledge and value the advancing skills at each grade. This was argued to have the potential to reinvigorate the culture of occupational imperialism within sonography.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Thesis advisor - Reeves, Pauline
Additional Information: Director of Studies : Dr Pauline Reeves
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Sheffield Hallam Doctoral Theses
Identification Number:
Depositing User: Jill Hazard
Date Deposited: 06 Jun 2018 12:54
Last Modified: 26 Apr 2021 13:32

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