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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.

Analyzing Communication

Praxis of Method

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Wolff-Michael Roth and Pei-Ling Hsu

The collection of data sources in the social sciences involves communication in one form or another: between research participants who are observed while communicating or between researcher and researched, who communicate so that the former can learn about/from the latter. How does one analyze communication? In particular, how does one learn to analyze data sources established in and about communication? In response to these questions, the authors provide insights into the "laboratory" of social science research concerned with the analysis of communication in all of its forms, including language, gestures, images, and prosody. Writing in the spirit of Bourdieu, and his recommendations for the transmission of a scientific habitus, the authors allow readers to follow their social science research in the making. Thus, each chapter focuses on a particular topic-identity, motivation, knowing, interaction-and exhibits how to go about researching it: How to set up research projects, how to collect data sources, how to find research questions, and how to do many other practical things to succeed. The authors comment on excerpts from the findings of between 2 and 4 published studies to describe how to write and publish research, how to address audiences, which decisions they have made, which alternative approaches there might exist, and many other useful recommendations for data analysis and paper publishing. In the end, the authors actually follow an expert social scientist as he analyzes data in real time in front of an audience of graduate students. The entire book therefore constitutes something like a journey into the kitchen of an experienced chef who gives advice in the process of cooking.

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Edited by Alberto J. Rodriguez

In this era of mandated high stakes and standardized testing, teachers and schools officials find themselves struggling to meet the demands for improved student achievement. At the same time, they are also expected to teach all subjects as required by national and state curriculum standards. Because of these competing demands, science is not even taught or taught less often in order to make more room for mathematics and language arts “drill and practice” and “teaching to the test.” Anyone concerned with providing students with a well-rounded education should ask whether these drastic measures—even if they were to show improvement in achievement—justify denying children access to the unique opportunities for intellectual growth and social awareness that the effective instruction of science provides. Will these students have enough exposure to the science curriculum to prepare them to do well later in middle and high school? How is this current situation going to help ameliorate the pervasive achievement gap in science, and how is it going to motivate students to pursue science-related careers?
The authors of this book believe that instead of sacrificing the science curriculum to make more time for drill and practice in mathematics and language arts, what should be done is to connect current research on literacy and science instruction with effective pedagogy. Therefore, this volume provides fresh theoretical insights and practical applications for better understanding how science can be used as a pathway to teaching literacy, and hence, as a pathway to improving teachers’ practice and students’ learning.

The World of Science Education

Science Education in Asia

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Edited by Yew-Jin Lee

Each volume in the 7-volume series The World of Science Education reviews research in a key region of the world. These regions include North America, South and Latin America, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, Europe and Israel, Arab States, and Sub-Saharan Africa.
The focus of this Handbook is on science education in Asia and the scholarship that most closely supports this program. The reviews of the research situate what has been accomplished within a given field in an Asian rather than an international context. The purpose therefore is to articulate and exhibit regional networks and trends that produced specific forms of science education. The thrust lies in identifying the roots of research programs and sketching trajectories—focusing the changing façade of problems and solutions within regional contexts. The approach allows readers to review what has been done and accomplished, what is missing and what might be done next.

Learning in the Making

Disposition and Design in Early Education

Margaret Carr, Carolyn Jones, Wendy Lee, Anne B. Smith, Kate Marshall and Judith Duncan

This book presents an international perspective on environmental educational and specifically the influence that context has on this aspect of curriculum. The focus is on environmental education both formal and non formal and the factors that impact upon its effectiveness, particularly in non-Western and non-English-speaking contexts (i.e., outside the UK, USA, Australia, NZ, etc. ). An important feature of the book is that it draws upon the experiences and research from local experts from an extremely diverse cohort across the world (25 countries and 2 regions in total). The book addresses topics such as: the development of environmental education in different countries, its implementation, the influence of political, cultural, societal or religious mores; governmental or ministerial drives; economic or other pressures driving curriculum reform; the influence of external assessment regimes on environmental education, and so on.

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.

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.