Working Paper 116
Theoretical triangulation of academic self-formation: Nine critical literature reviews and emerging questions
Published May 2024

This paper presents conceptual research that gathers, evaluates, and synthesises existing theories or concepts pertaining to students’ academic self-formation in higher education, as part of a doctoral project on that topic (Lee, 2021; 2023; 2024). The author conducted a series of critical literature reviews (Snyder, 2019) on different but related topics, resulting in nine conceptual essays bearing on aspects of academic self-formation. Each essay has four elements: (1) rationale for the focus on the concepts/theories; (2) what they tell us about the conditions, resources, and results of student self-formation; (3) how the self-formation approach reciprocally expands upon the selected concepts/theories; and (4) emerging questions or unresolved matters necessitating further exploration for a more thorough comprehension of academic self-formation. The essays presented in this paper contribute multiple and hybrid perspectives for theoretical reflection (Sayer, 1992) or theoretical triangulation (Denzin, 2012) of the phenomenon of academic self-formation. The paper extends the discussion in a previous CGHE working paper on the same topic (Lee, 2021).