Social Places and Senior Pupils’ Identity in a Secondary School Environment

An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis


  • Lynne Rae
  • Edward Edgerton
  • Jim Mckenhnie


school environment, identity, adolescent development, phenomenology


This paper investigatesthe relationship between the school environment and senior pupils’ identity development in a secondary school in Scotland. The study used semi-structured interviews and Photovoice along with Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis, to explore senior pupils’ experience of the social placeswithin their school. The findings reveal the relationship between the places that pupils can access for social interaction and their sense of identity, and their useof territoriality to protect these specific places. The findings are considered in the context of the role of the school environment, pupils’ needs and theirimplications for school design and planning.