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Article
Publication date: 7 January 2019

Phil Wood and Matt O’Leary

Teaching excellence remains a contested term in English higher education (HE). This paper begins by reflecting on its complex and sometimes blurred meaning, charting the…

Abstract

Purpose

Teaching excellence remains a contested term in English higher education (HE). This paper begins by reflecting on its complex and sometimes blurred meaning, charting the divergence between academic interests in the complexity and contextual questions relating to practice development and organisational and sectoral shifts which have been driven by managerialism, accountability and “top-down” ideas of change. The authors argue that this divergence, epitomised in the development of the teaching excellence framework, has led to a confused, if ubiquitous, use of excellence to identify organisational and sector-led ideas of what it means to deliver quality teaching. However, these frameworks have become progressively detached from the complexity of practice investigated by those interested in pedagogy. The paper aims to discuss this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a conceptual paper which brings together literature from teaching excellence, organisational science, time and HE to develop an alternative approach to pedagogic development.

Findings

Based on a critique of the current, confused conceptualisation of teaching excellence, the authors offer a different narrative which demonstrates how a reconsideration of the factors is important in developing critical and challenging teaching opportunities. Based on a “bottom-up” system focusing on dialogue, sustainability and “unhasty” time, the authors argue for a re-establishing of a holistic approach in HE providers based on emergent pedagogies as opposed to teaching excellence.

Originality/value

This paper demonstrates why teaching excellence has become conceptually fractured in an English context, and why a new approach to pedagogic development needs to be considered to establish a more positive and critical approach at both the institutional and sectoral levels. This paper outlines a possible approach to developing such renewal.

Details

International Journal of Comparative Education and Development, vol. 21 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2396-7404

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 2020

Tony Bennett

The purpose of this paper is to critically assess the degree to which current union learning strategy and practice in the UK can become a catalyst for greater activism and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to critically assess the degree to which current union learning strategy and practice in the UK can become a catalyst for greater activism and participation by their members in the workplace and beyond. To this end, the paper seeks to draw on the rich heritage of pedagogic theory and practice in adult education writing to bring a fresh perspective to a key aspect of industrial relations.

Design/methodology/approach

Through a meta-analysis of the current literature on the role of union learning representatives, learning centres and the context of that learning, the paper seeks to enhance understanding of how such initiatives in addition to upskilling workers lead to members' greater enlightenment with respect to the asymmetric power relations within the workplace and society. Using a conceptual model devised by the author from Freirean theory, this potentially increased awareness of their position in the organisation and society leading to greater levels of subsequent activism and participation by these learners is then critically assessed.

Findings

Utilising the radical perspective of Paulo Freire, the article critically analyses the key elements of current union learning strategies in the UK. The paper concludes that union pedagogy strategy not just often raises members' awareness, as Freire would advocate, of their “subordinate” position in society, but potentially also genuinely equips them with the skills, knowledge and understanding to challenge that position through subsequent union activism and, therefore, greater participation in decision-making in the workplace. Union-facilitated learning, it is argued, can also develop the skills and knowledge necessary to increase members' job security.

Originality/value

To the author's knowledge, this is the first time that a Freirean analysis has been applied to this key element of contemporary trade union strategy and practice. In particular, the study seeks to also go beyond most studies of union pedagogic approaches and focus on the learner's journey and how this may imbue a propensity to become more active in the union and, therefore, the workplace.

Details

Journal of Participation and Employee Ownership, vol. 3 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2514-7641

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Article
Publication date: 13 May 2019

Ana Pedro, João Piedade, João Filipe Matos and Neuza Pedro

The construction of learning scenarios is a way to plan for teaching activities, promoting the development of skills related to problem solving, collaboration, critical…

Abstract

Purpose

The construction of learning scenarios is a way to plan for teaching activities, promoting the development of skills related to problem solving, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity. Using learning scenarios as a lesson planning strategy becomes a powerful tool in initial teacher education. On the one hand, it mobilizes teaching-related scientific concepts, and on the other hand, it offers opportunities to think on innovative pedagogic approaches involving strategies and capacities essential for the future teacher. Research shows that teacher education programs within real school contexts enriched with digital technologies represent an important factor in increasing the quality of teachers’ preparation and their future professional practice. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors present the analysis of practice of design and implementation of learning scenarios in teachers’ initial education courses developed with students of teaching master degrees. Activity theory is used in the analysis of a case study of a student-teacher in Computer Science.

Findings

The results have been analyzed, contributing to the specification of the principles underlying the learning scenarios in initial teacher education.

Research limitations/implications

Results show the affordances and possibilities of using learning scenarios as structuring resources for the initial teacher education practice.

Originality/value

Therefore, the use of learning scenarios brings a set of potentialities to teacher training given its prospective nature.

Details

The International Journal of Information and Learning Technology, vol. 36 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-4880

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Article
Publication date: 8 April 2014

Ahmad Raza and Hasan Sohaib Murad

This paper aims to reconstruct the metaphor of classroom learning in plural cultural context. It underscores the essential complexity of the human learning and argues for…

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360

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to reconstruct the metaphor of classroom learning in plural cultural context. It underscores the essential complexity of the human learning and argues for multiple pedagogical practices as a tool for instructional engagement.

Design/methodology/approach

Technological innovations have given new meanings and interpretations to the social vocabulary of learning across the world. These innovations have created cultural contexts in which metaphor of classroom learning needs to be revisited and reassessed. It discusses the concept of classroom learning in a humanistic cultural context and explores a methodological framework for multiple pedagogic practices a tool for learning engagement based on critique of divergent themes in pedagogical literature.

Findings

It is argued that classroom learning is a complex microcosm of human bodies, minds and cultures, necessitating major adaptations, both from teachers and learners. It is a continuous engagement, borne out of mutual willingness of teachers and learners to become indivisible part of whole living experience of learning. Classroom as a metaphor of learning would continue to inspire the serious learners, have responded to technological innovations, currently experienced by the human societies across the world, and has gone on to become a “cyber-classroom” in the era of globalization.

Originality/value

The paper highlights underlying cultural complexities of human learning and hence underscores the need for a revised and pluralistic curriculum for the global management education and those who are engaged in it.

Details

Journal for Multicultural Education, vol. 8 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2053-535X

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 28 November 2017

Ian M. Kinchin

The purpose of this study is to offer exploration of pedagogic frailty as a framework to support professional development of university teachers in a personalised and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to offer exploration of pedagogic frailty as a framework to support professional development of university teachers in a personalised and discipline-sensitive way.

Design/methodology/approach

The method involves participants constructing a concept map for each dimension of the model. These maps must have high explanatory power to act as a frame for developing a personal narrative to support reflection on practice. This reflection starts from the academic’s current knowledge structure and provides a bespoke, individualised focus for further learning.

Findings

This conceptual paper is informed by case studies of academics’ interactions with the frailty model that have helped to refine it as a faculty development tool. This is clarified by providing explicit requirements of an “excellent” map, and places the reflective process within a learning theory that is aligned with the values that underpin the model.

Originality value

The type of rhizomatic learning that is supported by the model, in which there are no imposed learning outcomes or strictly delineated pathways to success, is particularly suited to support the professional development of more senior academics. This represents an innovative approach to faculty development.

Details

PSU Research Review, vol. 1 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2399-1747

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Article
Publication date: 2 March 2015

Lynne Wyness and Stephen Sterling

This paper aims to present an overview of the design and implementation of a curriculum review undertaken at Plymouth University, UK, to gauge the incidence and status of…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present an overview of the design and implementation of a curriculum review undertaken at Plymouth University, UK, to gauge the incidence and status of sustainability in degree programmes across the curriculum. The paper outlines the methodological approach taken, reviews findings and summarises the effects and limitations of the exercise.

Design/methodology/approach

Rather than creating a criteria-based auditing tool, which might have been interpreted by academics as top-down evaluation of practice, emphasis was placed on self-evaluation of how the degree programmes were implementing sustainability in a number of broad areas, such as curriculum content, pedagogical approaches and student engagement. A review tool was created and distributed to all undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes in the four campus-based faculties in the university. In particular, the review was designed to contribute the institutional annual submissions to the Learning in Future Environments index.

Findings

The paper discusses findings in some key areas relating to curriculum content, pedagogical approaches, partnerships and student engagement. Some of the obstacles and limitations identified by programme leaders in implementing education for sustainable development are discussed and areas of future consideration are included.

Originality/value

The review contributes to the limited national and international examples available of institution-wide curriculum reviews in the arena of education for sustainable development. The discussion of the problems, benefits and implications will be of value to other higher education institutions considering undertaking their own curriculum review.

Details

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, vol. 16 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1467-6370

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2011

Vincent Carpentier, Norbert Pachler, Karen Evans and Caroline Daly

The purpose of this paper is to explore efforts to bridge conceptualisation and practice in work‐based learning by reflecting on the legacy and sustainability of the…

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1815

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore efforts to bridge conceptualisation and practice in work‐based learning by reflecting on the legacy and sustainability of the Centre for Excellence in Work‐based Learning for Education Professionals at the Institute of Education, University of London. The Centre was part of the national CETL (Centres for Excellence in Teaching and Learning) initiative (2005‐2010) and focussed on exploring ways of transforming current models of work‐based learning (WBL) in a bid to respond to the diversity of professional learning needs within education and beyond.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper presents three case studies which are representative of the Centre's approach to drive theoretical development in WBL.

Findings

The three projects featured contributed to the development of WBL through synergetic cross fertilisation while operating independently from each other. Also, they are characterised by sustainability beyond the end of the CETL initiative. The Putting Knowledge to Work project developed and operationalised the concept of recontextualisation for WBL in successfully moving knowledge from disciplines and workplaces into a curriculum; and from a curriculum into successful pedagogic strategies and learner engagement in educational institutions and workplaces. The London Mobile Learning Group developed a research dynamic around theory and practice of learning with mobile media which contributed to the development of new approaches in (work‐based) learning. The Researching Medical Learning and Practice Network created a community of practice bringing together educational researchers with medical education practitioners and researchers resulting in a greater understanding of how professional attitudes and practices develop in both undergraduate and postgraduate contexts.

Originality/value

The experience of the WLE offers an example of innovative ways to continue to develop our understanding of work‐based learning and inform practice. The impact of the WLE activities on theory, policy and practice is evident in the creation of national and international platforms strengthening existing institutional links.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 1 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

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Book part
Publication date: 25 January 2013

Jorge Brantes Ferreira, Amarolinda Zanela Klein, Angilberto Freitas and Eliane Schlemmer

New mobile platforms, connected seamlessly to the Internet via wireless access, become increasingly more powerful as each day passes. Smartphones and tablet computers, as…

Abstract

New mobile platforms, connected seamlessly to the Internet via wireless access, become increasingly more powerful as each day passes. Smartphones and tablet computers, as well as other ultraportable devices, have already gained enough critical mass to be considered mainstream devices, being present in the daily lives of millions of higher education students. Whole firms, devoted solely to developing high-quality and high engagement content to these devices, have emerged, populating an application market of thousands of teaching applications (apps) focused on diverse higher education topics, from physics and calculus to anatomy and law. Many universities throughout the world have already adopted or are planning to adopt mobile technologies in many of their courses as a better way to connect students with the subjects they are studying. These new mobile platforms allow students to access content anywhere/anytime to immerse himself/herself into that content (alone or interacting with teachers or colleagues via web communication forms) and to interact with that content in ways that were not previously possible (via touch and voice recognition technologies, for instance). The study of such technologies and their possible uses for higher education, as well as the impacts they can have on stimulating more active participation and engagement with the course subjects and research in higher education, while at the same time fostering collaboration among students and even different institutions, is the goal of the proposed chapter. Through the evaluation of the teacher/student acceptance and adoption of such mobile technologies, this chapter plans to provide a thorough overview of the possibilities and consequences of mobile learning in higher education environments as a gateway to ubiquitous learning – perhaps the ultimate form of learner engagement, since it allows the student to learn, access and interact with important content in any way or at any time or place she/he might want.

Details

Increasing Student Engagement and Retention Using Mobile Applications: Smartphones, Skype and Texting Technologies
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-509-8

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Book part
Publication date: 25 July 2014

Nicola Carr and Kym Fraser

International figures on university expenditure on the development of next generation learning spaces (NGLS) are not readily available but anecdote suggests that simply…

Abstract

International figures on university expenditure on the development of next generation learning spaces (NGLS) are not readily available but anecdote suggests that simply retrofitting an existing classroom as an NGLS conservatively costs $AUD200,000, while developing new buildings often cost in the region of 100 million dollars and over the last five years, many universities in Australia, Europe and North America have developed new buildings. Despite this considerable investment, it appears that the full potential of these spaces is not being realised.

While researchers argue that a more student centred learning approach to teaching has inspired the design of next generation learning spaces (Tom, Voss, & Scheetz, 2008) and that changed spaces change practice (Joint Information Systems Committee, 2009) when ‘confronted’ with a next generation learning spaces for the first time, anecdotes suggest that many academics resort to teaching as they have always taught and as they were taught. This chapter highlights factors that influence teaching practices, showing that they are to be found in the external, organisational and personal domains.

We argue that in order to fully realise significant improvements in student outcomes through the sector’s investment in next generation learning spaces, universities need to provide holistic and systematic support across three domains – the external, the organisational and the personal domains, by changing policies, systems, procedures and localised practices to better facilitate changes in teaching practices that maximise the potential of next generation learning spaces.

Details

The Future of Learning and Teaching in Next Generation Learning Spaces
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-986-7

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Book part
Publication date: 26 November 2015

Do Coyle

This chapter will focus on how inclusive pedagogic practices can be played out in primary and secondary classrooms where the goal is using languages other than the…

Abstract

This chapter will focus on how inclusive pedagogic practices can be played out in primary and secondary classrooms where the goal is using languages other than the learners’ home language as both the medium and content of learning (i.e. learning to use language and using languages to learn). This requires an approach which is inclusive, flexible and relates to any context – both languages and subject classrooms. The focus will be on how using an integrated approach to the curriculum, in which languages are used as a tool for learning, has the potential to be motivating and accessible to very diverse learners.

The chapter includes two lessons – the primary lesson plan will expand how simple language can be used to develop and enjoy painting and art with young students and the secondary lesson plan will focus on how a visual approach to thematic or cross-disciplinary work, such as natural disasters, can supplement and support deeper understanding of other areas of the curriculum as well as building confidence in communicating in an alternative language.

Details

Inclusive Pedagogy Across the Curriculum
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-647-8

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