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Why Look at Plants?

The Botanical Emergence in Contemporary Art

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Edited by Giovanni Aloi

Why Look at Plants? proposes a thought-provoking and fascinating look into the emerging cultural politics of plant-presence in contemporary art. Through the original contributions of artists, scholars, and curators who have creatively engaged with the ultimate otherness of plants in their work, this volume maps and problematizes new intra-active, agential interconnectedness involving human-non-human biosystems central to artistic and philosophical discourses of the Anthropocene.

Plant’s fixity, perceived passivity, and resilient silence have relegated the vegetal world to the cultural background of human civilization. However, the recent emergence of plants in the gallery space constitutes a wake-up-call to reappraise this relationship at a time of deep ecological and ontological crisis. Why Look at Plants? challenges readers’ pre-established notions through a diverse gathering of insights, stories, experiences, perspectives, and arguments encompassing multiple disciplines, media, and methodologies.

Being a Teacher | Researcher

A Primer on Doing Authentic Inquiry Research on Teaching and Learning

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Konstantinos Alexakos

Using a sociocultural approach to critical action research, this book is a primer in doing reflexive, authentic inquiry research in teaching and learning for educators as teacher | researchers. Rather than the artificial dichotomy between theory and practice, the roles of teacher and researcher are instead seen in a dialectic relationship (indicated by the symbol “|” in teacher | researcher) in which each informs and mediates the other in the process of revising and generating new knowledge that is of benefit to those being researched.
In addition to providing a theoretical foundation for authentic inquiry, Being a Teacher | Researcher provides a detailed framework with ideas and strategies that interested educators can apply in exploring teaching and learning in both formal and informal settings. It provides concrete examples of how to use authentic inquiry as a basis for collaborating with others to improve the quality of teaching and learning while cogenerating new theory and associated practices that bridge what has been described as a theory-practice divide. Included in this book are how to plan and carry out authentic inquiry studies, choosing appropriate methodologies, methods of data collection and analysis, negotiating research with human participants, using authenticity criteria and characteristics, and addressing challenges and conflicts for teacher | researchers.

Action Learning and Action Research

Songlines through Interviews

Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt

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John Smyth, Lawrence Angus, Barry Down and Peter McInerney

Activist and Socially Critical School and Community Renewal comes about at an incredibly important point in history, and it offers a genuinely new paradigm. This book attempts what few others have tried—to bring together knowledge and literature around school reform and community renewal through authentic ethnographic stories of real schools and communities. The book describes and analyzes a courageous struggle for a more socially just world, around notions of relational solidarity that speak back to ideas that continue to privilege the already advantaged. This book provides some desperately needed new storylines as a basis for school and community renewal for the most excluded groups in society. It provides a new social imagination for ‘doing school’ in contexts that stand to benefit from school and community voiced approaches.

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Edited by Tina (A.C.) Besley

Tina Besley has edited this collection which examines and critiques the ways that different countries, particularly Commonwealth and European states, assess the quality of educational research in publicly funded higher education institutions. Such assessment often ranks universities, departments and even individual academics, and plays an important role in determining the allocation of funding to support university research. Yet research is only one aspect of academic performance alongside teaching and service or administration components. The book focuses on the theoretical and practical issues that accompany the development of national and international systems of research assessment, particularly in the field of education. In our interconnected, globalised world, some of the ideas of assessment that have evolved in one country have almost inevitably travelled elsewhere especially the UK model. Consequently the book comprises an introduction, eighteen chapters that discuss the situation in ten countries, followed by a postscript. It gathers together an outstanding group of twenty-five prominent international scholars with expertise in the field of educational research and includes many with hands-on experience in the peer review process. The book is designed to appeal to a wide group of people involved as knowledge workers and knowledge managers—academics, students and policy makers - in higher education and interested in assessment and accountability mechanisms and processes.

Buying your Way into Heaven

Education and Corruption in International Perspective

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Edited by Stephen P. Heyneman

Education is commonly thought to be a haven for the young. No matter how unstable the polity, no matter how dismal the prospects for the economy, education investments are often treated as sacrosanct. This is one reason for the popularity of education as part of foreign aid. Who could object to providing more opportunity for young people to study? Recently however, it has been discovered that education systems can be as corrupt as other parts of government and the economy; and that values of fairness and impartiality, once thought to be universal characteristics of education systems, can be supplanted by the interests of specific individuals, families and ethnic groups. Education corruption has now been found in all regions of the world, but it manifests itself in different ways. How do these differ from one region to another? What should be done to minimize education corruption? And what should be done to protect universities and employers in areas situated where there is little corruption from the products of those parts of the world where education corruption is the norm. This book will explain the meaning of education corruption and how it works; it will provide illustrations from Asia, Africa, Southeastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, and it will propose actions and policies on the part of regional and international agencies to counter-act what is now likely to become a new and unexpected global crisis.

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Edited by Murray Print and Henry Milner

Why does it appear that many young people are disengaging from democracy and political participation? For many governments, politicians, academics, social commentators and researchers this is a serious and challenging problem. Consequently widespread interest exists on how to engage young people in politics and democracy. Civic education has re-emerged as a possible answer to this question, though not necessarily in the form in which it may be currently known. This book examines research into issues about the engagement of young people in politics and democracy and examines research on civic education applications and programs which may address concerns about youth political participation. Murray Print and Henry Milner are professors from the University of Sydney and the Universite de Montreal respectively. They have brought together a group of leading researchers exploring the relationship between political participation and civic education to examine this relationship in greater depth.

The continuum of secondary science teacher preparation

Knowledge, questions, and research recommendations

Edited by Angelo Collins and Nicole Gillespie

The mission of the Knowles Science Teaching Foundation (KSTF), to increase the quantity of high quality high school science and mathematics teachers in United States High Schools, calls for a deeper understanding of what it takes to prepare and support successful teachers. On September 21, 2006, KSTF convened a group of 41 individuals with a broad range of perspectives and expertise to address three essential questions with regard to secondary science teacher preparation: What do we know, what do we need to find out, and what research will help us fill in the gaps? Participants were intentionally selected from a diverse cross section of the education community and included teachers, educational researchers, teacher educators, policy specialists and scientists. The 41 participants formed 12 working groups and spent two and a half days addressing the following aspects of teacher preparation:
· recruitment and retention; · models of secondary science teacher preparation; · pedagogic preparation including field-based experiences, methods courses, and preparing teachers for diverse populations; · content preparation in biology, chemistry, Earth science, and physics as well as the nature of science in general; · induction; · mentoring.
Each working group was tasked with synthesizing their discussions and conclusions for the entire group of conference participants and in a written document. This volume represents the final outcome of that conference; 12 chapters that reflect the work of 40 dedicated scholars and practitioners who share a deep commitment to the pursuit of excellence in the preparation of secondary science teachers.

Roza Leikin, Abraham Berman and Boris Koichu

This book breaks through in the field of mathematical creativity and giftedness. It suggests directions for closing the gap between research in the field of mathematics education and research in the field of creativity and giftedness. It also outlines a research agenda for further research and development in the field.
The book consists of a balanced set of chapters by mathematicians, mathematics educators, educational psychologists and educational researchers. The authors of different chapters accept dynamic conception of creativity and giftedness.
The book provides analysis of cognitive, affective and social factors associated with the development of creativity in all students and with the realisation of mathematical talent in gifted students. It contains theoretical essays, research reports, historical overviews, recommendations for curricular design, and insights about promotion of mathematical creativity and giftedness at different levels.
The readers will find many examples of challenging mathematical problems intended at developing or examining mathematical creativity and giftedness as well as ideas for direct implementation in school and tertiary mathematics courses. They will also find theoretical models that can be used in researching students’ creativity and giftedness. Research reports enlighten relationships between excellence in mathematics and creativity and examine different aspects of inquiry-based environment as a powerful way for developing mathematical creativity in school students. The readers can also learn about characteristics of creativity of research mathematicians.

Dialogism

A Bakhtinian Perspective on Science and Learning

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Wolff-Michael Roth

In this book, Wolff-Michael Roth takes a 38-minute conversation in one science classroom as an occasion for analyzing learning and development from a perspective by and large inspired by the works of Mikhail Bakhtin but also influenced by Lev Vygotsky and 20th century European phenomenology and American pragmatism. He throws a new and very different light on the nature and use of language in science classroom, and its transformation. In so doing, he not only exposes the weaknesses of existing theoretical frameworks, including radical and social constructivism, but also exhibits problems in his own previous thinking about knowing and learning in science classrooms. The book particularly addresses issues normally out of the light of sight of science education research, including the material bodily principle, double-voicedness, laughter, coarse language, swearing, the carnal and carnivalistic aspects of life, code-switching, and the role of vernacular in the transformation of scientific language. The author suggests that only a unit of analysis that begins with the fullness of life, singular, unique, and once-occurrent Being, allows an understanding of learning and development, emotion and motivation, that is, knowing science in its relation to the human condition writ large. In this, the book provides responses to questions that conceptual change research, for example, is unable to answer, for example, the learning paradox, the impossibility to eradicate misconceptions, and the resistance of teachers to take a conceptual change position.