Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Introducing pedagogical research

This was the title of a one day seminar that Bill, Stuart and I contributed to today, organised by the Higher Education Academy and taking place at Strathclyde University, Glasgow. It was aimed at people who weren't "expert" educational researchers, but were interested in learning more about different options for research methods.
We were doing a session on The phenomenographic approach in which we were talking about what phenomenography was, how we had applied the approach and what we did with the findings. The structure of the day was that there several parallel sessions am and pm (e.g. on case study approach, or postmodern methods, or threshold concepts) each lasting 90 minutes. The people attending comprised an interesting mixture of academics, educational developers and researchers and at least one librarian (who has been using phenomenography to explore conceptions of IL).
I attended the session on "threshold concepts" in the afternoon: these are "lightbulb" or "portal" concepts in a subject that (once grasped) enable someone to progress - transformative concepts. There was a conference in this area last year, so rather than try to explain any further I will refer people to that conference website "
. I can't mount our presentation at the moment as we were fiddling about with it here and it's on Stuart's memory stick, not mine. We're thinking of doing our session again, possibly at Sheffield.
Photo by Sheila Webber: First strawberry, just before I ate it, June 2007 (this is the same strawberry shown in the pot a few days ago)

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