A call for research into the link between professional practice and education

There is no universally accepted definition of the criteria that makes a profession, nor what factors contribute to professionalisation of a specific industry. Definitions by Greenwood (1984), van Mook et al (2009) and Mahony (2003) provide a brief comparison of the attributes of a profession and being professional. Greenwood (1984) offers a succinct definition of a profession, identifying they possess a systematic body of theory and community authority, while van Mook et al (2009) suggest it is expertise in a particular domain that contributes most to professionalism. Additionally, Mahony (2003) argues that the controlling of education is key to being a profession and being professional. Mahony (2003) further suggests having specialist knowledge with autonomy and specific professional ethics are essential elements in developing professionalism. The concept of professionalism is therefore interwoven with education.

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