Monash University
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Symbolism in Management Education: An Analysis of the Origins and Academic Relevance of the 'Bachelor' Qualification in a Gender Balanced, Multi-cultural Society

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journal contribution
posted on 2017-06-06, 00:59 authored by Townsend, Peter
Research of the origins of the academic title 'Bachelor' establish the word usage in English speaking, western universities; based on a social status.The proposition is that the term is no longer relevant and acceptable today in our gender-balanced, global, multi-cultural society. Alhough there has been a significant shift in the perceptions and usage away from gender-based nouns, words evoke strong mental images. This form of subtle gender socialisation should be excluded from education by gender-neutrality. Education requires symbols of transformational leadership reflecting the present truths; facilitating cultural change relevant to society.Practically, academia has to give considerations to re-generating it's own image in terms which are acceptable to business, employees and society, as well as to the new breed of students from diverse cultures across the world.The literary proposition is that the specific 'Bachelor' title breaches Equal Opportunity legislation and international guidelines on sexual discrimination; also contravening policies introduced by states, companies and educational establishments concerning gender neutrality in literature content. The research suggests a need for symbolic gender change in the title 'Bachelor', being perceived as discriminatory by students. This analysis is from an Australian perspective. The research that raises the questions as to the validity of the term 'Bachelor' was conducted here, however, the results have both worldwide implications and applications. It is intended as a discussion topic rather than a scholarly submission.


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Department of Management.

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