Engaging Learners with Semiotics

Lessons Learned from Reading the Signs

Ruth Gannon-Cook and Kathryn Ley

Semiotics has explained the cognitive mechanisms of a complex, subtle and important phenomenon affecting all human interactions and communications across socio-cultural, socio-economic groups. Semiotics has captured a durable and enriching functionality from multiple disciplines including psychology, anthropology, sociology, philosophy, marketing and their multidisciplinary off-spring, such as, educational psychology, consumer psychology, visual literacy, media studies, etc. Semiotic treatises have explored critical factors affecting the relationship between any intended message and the message recipient’s interpretation. The factors that shape interpretation inherently affect learning and often directly affect learner engagement with the content. Learning environments have been culturally-laden communication experiences which academics, largely segmented by discipline, have described but often cloaked in semiotic jargon.

Each chapter integrates example after example of semiotics in everyday activities and events, such as stories, graphics, movies, games, infographics, and educational strategies. The chapters also present the most salient semiotic features for learning environments. The book describes semiotics as a communications phenomenon with practical implications for educators to enhance courses and programs with semiotic features in any educational environment but especially in mediated e-learning environments.

Edited by Bernard W. Andrews

Arts education research has increased significantly since the beginning of the new millennium. This peer-reviewed book, the first of two volumes, captures some of the exciting developments in Canada. There is geographical diversity represented from across this large country, as well as theoretical and methodological diversity in the chapters. There is also a sense of togetherness with those, and other, diversities. There are calls to action and calls to play. We hear voices of artists, researchers, and artist researchers. The life histories of others, and of the self, are presented. Perspectives on Arts Education Research in Canada, Volume 1: Surveying the Landscape provides a wide spectrum of current research by members of the Arts Researchers and Teachers Society (ARTS)/La societé des chercheurs et des enseignants des arts (SCEA), a Special Interest Group (SIG) within the Canadian Association for Curriculum Studies (CACS), which is in turn, is a constituent association of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE).

Contributors are: Bernard W. Andrews, Julia Brook, Susan Catlin, Genevieve Cloutier, Yoriko Gillard, Kate Greenway, Michael Hayes, Nané Jordan, Sajani (Jinny) Menon, Catrina Migliore, Kathryn Ricketts, Pauline Sameshima, and Sean Wiebe.

Improving Early Literacy Outcomes

Curriculum, Teaching, and Assessment

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Edited by Nic Spaull and John Comings

Learning to read and write for meaning and pleasure are arguably the two most important competences that children acquire in primary school. Yet, in 2019 more than one half of children worldwide do not reach this first rung on the literacy ladder. Improving Early Literacy Outcomes aims to address this head-on, by foregrounding the work of more than 40 researchers, most of them living in, and working on, developing countries.

Their contributions illuminate, magnify, and discover anew the importance of improving early reading, through precise alignment of curriculum, teaching, and assessment, and with a special focus on some of the most under-studied countries in the world (e.g., Burkina Faso, Niger, and Senegal).

Through probing analyses of research, policy, and practice, the book highlights the common experiences of high aspirations repeatedly confronting harsh realities. Sixteen interconnected chapters cast an ever-vigilant and deflationary eye on the temptation to take an unrealistic approach to early literacy, and also caution against lumping all languages, contexts, and policy-challenges into a single heap.

This book provides an indispensable guide to policymakers, practitioners, educators, and academics working towards the realisation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Improving the teaching, learning, and assessment of early grade literacy is key not only to expanding the quality, access, and equity of education, but also to unlocking all the other SDGs, and ultimately to driving development.

Emerging Trends in Learning Analytics

Leveraging the Power of Education Data

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Edited by Myint Swe Khine

The term 'learning analytics' is defined as the measurement, collection, analysis, and reporting of information about learners and their contexts for the purposes of understanding and optimizing learning. In recent years learning analytics has emerged as a promising area of research that trails the digital footprint of the learners and extracts useful knowledge from educational databases to understand students’ progress and success. With the availability of an increased amount of data, potential benefits of learning analytics can be far-reaching to all stakeholders in education including students, teachers, leaders, and policymakers. Educators firmly believe that, if properly harnessed, learning analytics will be an indispensable tool to enhance the teaching-learning process, narrow the achievement gap, and improve the quality of education.

Many investigations have been carried out and disseminated in the literature and studies related to learning analytics are growing exponentially. This book documents recent attempts to conduct systematic, prodigious and multidisciplinary research in learning analytics and present their findings and identify areas for further research and development. The book also unveils the distinguished and exemplary works by educators and researchers in the field highlighting the current trends, privacy and ethical issues, creative and unique approaches, innovative methods, frameworks, and theoretical and practical aspects of learning analytics.

Contributors are: Arif Altun, Alexander Amigud, Dongwook An, Mirella Atherton, Robert Carpenter, Martin Ebner, John Fritz, Yoshiko Goda, Yasemin Gulbahar, Junko Handa, Dirk Ifenthaler, Yumi Ishige, Il-Hyun Jo, Kosuke Kaneko, Selcan Kilis, Daniel Klasen, Mehmet Kokoç, Shin'ichi Konomi, Philipp Leitner, ChengLu Li, Min Liu, Karin Maier, Misato Oi, Fumiya Okubo, Xin Pan, Zilong Pan, Clara Schumacher, Yi Shi, Atsushi Shimada, Yuta Taniguchi, Masanori Yamada, and Wenting Zou.

International Trends in Educational Assessment

Emerging Issues and Practices

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Edited by Myint Swe Khine

Assessment and evaluation have always been an integral part of the educational process. Quality and purposeful assessment can assist in students’ learning and their achievement. In recent years, considerable attention has been given to the roles of educational measurement, evaluation, and assessment with a view to improving the education systems throughout the world. Educators are interested in how to adequately prepare the young generation to meet the ever-growing demands of the 21st century utilizing robust assessment methods. There has also been increased demand in accountability and outcomes assessment in schools to bridge the gap between classroom practices and measurement and assessment of learners’ performance. This volume contains selected and invited papers from the First International Conference on Educational Measurement, Evaluation and Assessment (ICEMEA).

Contributors are: Peter Adams, Derin Atay, Nafisa Awwal, Helen Barefoot, Patrick Griffin, Bahar Hasirci, Didem Karakuzular, Don Klinger, Leigh Powell, Vicente Reyes, Mark Russell, Charlene Tan, Bryan Taylor, and Zhang Quan.

Resisting English Hegemony

A Study of Five English as a Foreign Language (EFL) High School Teachers

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Ewa Barbara Krawczyk

Resisting English Hegemony examines personal and educational English as a Foreign Language (EFL) journey of five public high school teachers and the ways they manifest their pedagogical practices to develop their students’ skills in the English language. This research explores history of EFL in pre and post-communist Poland, EFL teachers’ testimonies, methodologies and tools available for educators interested in EFL theories having roots in research and hands on experience in the EFL learning/teaching field. The research also focuses the development of students’ speaking, communicative, and cooperative skills in post-communist Poland, in the era of Poland’s membership in the European Union, and the era of widespread technology, Internet accessibility, visualization and globalization. The data for this study was collected over three months, and includes classroom observations and personal interviews with the study participants. The data from each participant was compared with the rest of the participants, and the analysis was done through drawing commonalities among their experiences and ways of teaching English as a Foreign Language.

Stability and Change in Science Education -- Meeting Basic Learning Needs

Homeostasis and Novelty in Teaching and Learning

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Edited by Phyllis Katz and Lucy Avraamidou

In this book the editors consider the resistance to change among teachers and learners despite all the evidence that science participation brings benefits for both individuals and nations. Beginning with biology, Stability and Change in Science Education: Meeting Basic Learning Needs explores this balance in teaching and learning science. The authors reflect upon this equilibrium as they each present their work and its contribution.

The book provides a wide range of examples using the change/stability lens. Authors from the Netherlands, Israel, Spain, Canada and the USA discuss how they observe and consider both homeostasis and novelty in theory, projects and other work. The book contains examples from science educators in schools and in other science rich settings.

Contributors are: Lucy Avraamidou, Ayelet Baram-Tsabari, Michelle Crowl, Marilynne Eichinger, Lars Guenther, Maria Heras, Phyllis Katz, Joy Kubarek, Lucy R. McClain, Patricia Patrick, Wolff-Michael Roth, Isabel Ruiz-Mallen, Lara Smetana, Hani Swirski, Heather Toomey Zimmerman, and Bart Van de Laar.

The Translational Design of Universities

An Evidence-Based Approach

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Edited by Kenn Fisher

Whilst schools are transforming their physical and virtual environments at a relatively glacial pace in most countries across the globe, universities are under extreme pressure to adapt to the rapid emergence of the virtual campus. Competition for students by online course providers is resulting in a rapidly emerging understanding of what the nature of the traditional campus will look like in the 21st century.
The blended virtual and physical technology enabled, hybrid learning environments now integrate the face-to-face and online virtual experience synchronously and asynchronously. Local branch campuses are emerging in city and town centres and international branch campuses are growing at a rapid rate. There is increasing pressure at various levels, i.e. the city, the urban and the campus, to create formal and informal learning spaces as well as re-purposing the library and social or third-spaces.
Many new hybrid campus developments are not based on any form of rigorous scholarly evidence. The risk is that many of these projects may fail. In taking an evidence-based approach this book seeks to align with the model of translational research from medical practice, using a modified ‘translational design’ approach. The majority of the chapter material comes from the scholarly work of doctoral graduates and their dissertations.
This book is the second in a series on the evidence-based translational design of educational institutions, with the first volume focussing on schools. This volume on Higher Education covers the city to the classroom and those elements in between. It also explores what the future might look like as judgements are made about what works in campus planning and design in our rapidly changing virtual and physical worlds.
Contributors are: Neda Abbasi, Ronald Beckers, Flavia Curvelo Magdaniel, Mollie Dollinger, Robert A. Ellis, Kenn Fisher, Barry J. Fraser, Kobi (Jacov) Haina, Rifca Hashimshony, Leah Irving, Marian Mahat, Saadia Majeed, Jacqueline Pizzuti-Ashby, Leanne Rose-Munro, Mahmoud Reza Saghafi, Panayiotis Skordi, Alejandra Torres-Landa Lopez, and Ji Yu.

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Edited by Annie Guerin and Trish McMenamin

In Belonging: Rethinking Inclusive Practices to Support Well-Being and Identity, issues related to inclusive education and belonging across a range of education contexts from early childhood to tertiary education are examined and matters related to participation, policy and theory, and identity and well-being are explored. Individual chapters, which are drawn from papers presented at The Inclusive Education Summit held at the University of Canterbury, 2016, canvass a variety of topics including pedagogy, sexuality, theory, policy and practice. These topics are explored from the authors’ varying perspectives as practitioners, academics and lay-persons and also from varying international perspectives including New Zealand, South Africa and Australia.

Contributors are: Keith Ballard, Henrietta Bollinger, Hera Cook, Michael Gafffney, Annie Guerin, Fiona Henderson, Leechin Heng, Kate McAnelly, Trish McMenamin, Be Pannell, Christine Rietveld, Marie Turner, Ben Whitburn, Julie White, and Melanie Wong.

The Narrative of Mathematics Teachers

Elementary School Mathematics Teachers’ Features of Education, Knowledge, Teaching and Personality

Edited by Dorit Patkin and Avikam Gazit

The issue of mathematics teaching and its impact on learners' attainments in this subject has continuously been on the public agenda. The anthology of chapters in this book consists of varied up-to-date studies of some of the best mathematics education researchers and mathematics teaching experts, exploring the varied aspects of this essential. The book depicts the elementary school mathematics teachers' world while relating to three aspects which comprise the professional environment of mathematics teachers: Teachers' education and teachers' knowledge, Teaching and Teachers' personality. The chapters are written on a level which addresses and might interest a wide readership: researchers, in-service teachers, pre-service teachers, parents and learners.