The interface between academic knowledge and working knowledge: implications for curriculum design, pedagogies and assessment ‘Recognising Workbased Learning’ HETAC Conference 2007 Dr Anne Murphy, DIT Structure of the Presentation • About working knowledge in HE • About paradigms in HE • Why WBL now? • Conceptualising the interface • Curriculum styles • Pedagogies and assessment in WBL • Unresolved issues Learning through work is nothing new in HE Apprenticeship Placements Internships Sandwich courses Block release Applied MSc MBA & DBA CPD courses Graduate Diplomas Special Purpose Awards Partnerships with the world of work are not new in HE Law Accountancy Medicine Pharma industry IT industry …….. Off-campus delivery/in-company Negotiated programmes: public service, defence forces, gárdaí…. Features of a paradigm or worldview (Kuhn etc.) Defined broadly as a set of practices underpinned by shared epistemology, values and beliefs, habits of reasoning, patterns of judgement, working techniques, with broad agreement on theories and concepts A paradigm may emerge from an earlier one, may displace an earlier paradigm, or exist alongside a different one At the MACRO level of metaphysics, a paradigm defines what can be known and understood At the MESO level of epistemology, a paradigm determines what counts a acceptable, or legitimate, knowledge At the MICRO level of ethics and praxis, a paradigm mediates the practices of its own community. Shifting paradigms and worldviews Circumstances, events and actions cause paradigm shifts in how HE organises itself and positions itself within the world Paradigms become accepted when: - professional bodies give them legitimacy - dynamic leaders adopt and promote them - specialised journals and books emerge - conferences of like-minded thinkers are organised - government agencies grant funding - educators include them in their curriculum content - they become popular in the media - they are no longer regarded as deviant - research gives them ‘scientific’ legitimacy - they feature in policy documents. Impact of a new paradigm in HE The ‘rules’ of the paradigm become tacitly known New theories emerge from practice within the paradigm The change in worldview impacts differently on different academic disciplines Resistances identify anomalies in the old and new paradigms When a paradigm becomes entrenched it too begins to resist challenges to it assumptions, values and theories Paradigmatic changes can blur boundaries and sometime generate border-crossings among paradigms Crises in paradigms can result in paralysis, resistance, or passive acceptance of new paradigms A new paradigm may not be a cumulative outcome of earlier paradigms, but can represent an entirely different worldview which needs mass persuasion for acceptance Acceptance of, or surrender to, a new paradigm frees practitioner from continuously examining the assumptions underpinning previous paradigms. Scholarship of the WBL Paradigm Selected Contemporary WBL Aspect of WBL International ‘Scholars’ Ontology and Epistemology: Hagar, Boud, Fenwick, Eraut, The nature of working Schön, Brown and Duguid, knowledge Sfard, Engeström, Fuller Billet, Solomon, Mills, Illeris, How people learn at work Eraut, Lave & Wenger, Bandura, Rogoff, Guile Partnerships between HE Brennan and Little, and the world of work Gallacher and Reeve, Field, Fuller General and Coffield,Fenwick, Postmodern Critique Usher, Edwards, Lynch Drivers for a greater ‘recognition’ of working knowledge HE output EXTERNAL ENVIRONMENT Global change New forms of delivery Economic markets agenda Graduates EU policy agendas New student types Mobility of workers New knowledge Changes in sources of HE funding New Faculties Demand to research Usable technologies Power of professional bodies Social stability Justice agenda Focus on a knowledge society Increasing credentialism Employer needs FEEDBACK LOOP The interface between College Knowledge and Working Knowledge Knowledge Mode 2 integrated between Work-based Knowledge Knowledge how to…. Codified in the workplace individual, tasks, context, affordances Competencies Knowledge of … Applied Skills Knowledge about … Insights Mostly individual knowledge/ Extrinsic Mode 1 College Knowledge / Prescribed Learning outcomes HE Codified Knowledge Tacit Knowledge Murphy, A. (2007) elaborated from Campbell, D. (2007) ‘Bachelors and Employability’, presentation to BeSt Graduate Fair Seminar, Vienna Pre-scribed Curriculum or Learning Contracts? Atomistic or Holistic? ATOMISTIC HOLISTIC Pre-scribed curriculum Learning Contract • Pre-determined LOs at unit or module • LOs broadly defined at level in context level • Integrated and relational curriculum • Alignment of curriculum content, learning activities and assessment • Negotiated assessment activities methods • Scale of learning negotiable • Teaching hours, learning hours and assessment hours mathematically determined • Challenges of learning tasks determine the pace and extent of learning • ECTS formulae determine programme design and pace of learning achievement • Work-place timelines dominate • Static timetabling of learning progress • Negotiated weighting of assessment criteria • Semester-based calendar structures Theoretical Stage Innovation in HE programme basis/dominant Centrality of the design and pedagogies paradigm of learner learning 1950s Programmed learning, open Behaviourism Learners control the learning pace of learning Adult learning methods, self- Learners negotiate 1970s directed and negotiated Humanism the pace and and ’80s learning content Learners E-learning, group and project- Constructivism collaboratively 1990s based learning, teams, sets focus on what is needed to be learned Learners negotiate Late Work-based learning Eclectic (situated, programme 1990s partnerships distributed, activities from the complex) exigencies of work WBL Model of a Learning Contract Negotiating Assessment Criteria for a WBL Learning Contract Some Critique of WBL Pedagogical Design • Colonisation of the lifeworlds of workers • Emphasis on performativity • Too-close to market needs • Demand for the ‘flexible’ worker • Lack of sufficient theory • Too-subjective • Too-generalist • Too-contextual • Too-difficult and time intensive Back to the Conference Title: Unresolved Issues • ‘Recognising’ con-current experiential learning • Acts of legitimation? Whose codes and accreditation are more powerful? • The power to regulate what is know? • Eliding WBL and AP(E)L as epistemological twins? • The learned curriculum versus the taught curriculum? • WBL as ‘collaborative co-creation’? • ‘Static’ or ‘emergent’ learning?
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