Mighty Negatrons and Collective Knitting: Academic Educators’ Experiences of Collaborative Inquiry-Based Learning

Inquiry-based Learning for Faculty and Institutional Development: A Conceptual and Practical Resource for Educators

ISBN: 978-1-78441-235-7, eISBN: 978-1-78441-234-0

ISSN: 2055-3641

Publication date: 29 November 2014

Abstract

This chapter explores the ways in which academic educators’ experience of collaborative inquiry-based learning (IBL) can illuminate student behaviours, particularly in relation to assessment and the affective domain. The facilitator of this IBL, in the setting of academic staff development in UK Higher Education, uses a reflective storytelling style to detail the learning of an annual cohort of staff at a university in the north west of the United Kingdom. Six separate academic staff cohorts enroled in a unit, as part of a Master of Arts in Academic Practice, to undertake this experiential, humanist way of learning, working with all the principles of collaborative inquiry. The chapter explores the ways in which the participants’ self-reported affective responses altered over the course of the unit, particularly in relation to the assessment. Participant reflections are integrated with pedagogic literature and extracts from the facilitator’s contemporaneous notes, assessor’s feedback and other material, detailing the ways in which the freedom of an IBL episode moves to anxiety associated with assessment, which can build as the assessment point nears. Reflections on group constitution, cohort characteristics and the role of the facilitator are considered in relation to the notion of ‘success’ of IBL episodes. This is interrogated particularly in relation to academic staff responses to the experience of the emotions of IBL, and how this may affect their own practice in designing teaching and learning experiences for students in Higher Education.

Acknowledgements

Acknowledgements

My heartfelt thanks to Anne Clayson, Garry Diack, Alison Domakin, Nicky Hirst, Ruth McQuater, Chris Meadows, Lindsey Munro, Barbara Shepherd, Lisa Trencher, Mandy Isles, Emily Webb, Kathryn Whitehead and all other participants on the Collaborative Inquiry unit 2007–2013.

Citation

Prowse, A. (2014), "Mighty Negatrons and Collective Knitting: Academic Educators’ Experiences of Collaborative Inquiry-Based Learning", Inquiry-based Learning for Faculty and Institutional Development: A Conceptual and Practical Resource for Educators (Innovations in Higher Education Teaching and Learning, Vol. 1), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 291-316. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2055-364120140000001015

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014 Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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