Tourism is a relatively new field of study in higher education, with a history traceable to the mid to late 20th century. The nature of the tourism phenomenon and its impacts on society have led to unprecedented production and expansion of knowledge that serves the double function of delineating its conceptual boundaries while at the same time attempting to address the immediate needs of the tourism industry. In England, tourism in higher education is associated with increasing number of programmes of study, students and academics. Despite the general consensus that tourism is a multifaceted phenomenon, it has been (re)presented narrowly as a vocational field of study in higher education, underpinned by a business management framework. This research was an attempt to demonstrate that tourism in higher education in England is discursively constituted, but not an organic reality. The research demonstrates how previously unquestioned discourses that signify ‘normal'' practices in higher education create opportunities and constraints that are implicated in the discursive ideological construction of tourism in higher education in England.