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- Volume 1, Issue 1, 2013
Critical Studies in Teaching and Learning (CriSTaL) - Volume 1, Issue 1, 2013
Volume 1, Issue 1, 2013
Source: Critical Studies in Teaching and Learning (CriSTaL) 1 (2013)More Less
The Editors would like to thank the reviewers who assisted us in peer reviewing papers included in this issue, and for their comments and feedback to the authors: Nasima Badsha, Marie Brennan, Chrissie Boughey, Ronelle Carolissen, Kathy Collins, Martin Hall, Wayne Hugo, Andre Keet, Lis Lange, Sioux McKenna, Rose Richards, Maureen Robinson, Maggie Savin-Baden, Suellen Shay, Susan van Schalkwyk, Terry Volbrecht, Gina Wisker, Michalinos Zembylas.
Author Vivienne BozalekSource: Critical Studies in Teaching and Learning (CriSTaL) 1, pp i –iii (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.14426/cristal.v1i1.13More Less
We are delighted to be bringing out this first edition of Critical Studies in Teaching and Learning. The planning for the journal began some four years back at the University of the Western Cape (UWC) in Cape Town, as part of the renewal of emphasis on the scholarship of teaching and learning at the institution. An editorial committee was formed by academics mainly from UWC and the other three higher education institutions in Cape Town, - Brenda Leibowitz and Cecilia Jacobs (Stellenbosch University), Chris Winberg and James Garraway (Cape Peninsula University of Technology), Dick Ng'ambi, Moragh Paxton and Cheryl Hodgkinson-Williams (University of Cape Town), Sherran Clarence and Vivienne Bozalek (University of the Western Cape), as well as Melanie Walker (University of the Free State), Denise Wood (University of South Australia) and Masebala Tjabane (Higher Education Learning and Teaching Association of Southern Africa (HELTASA) to which the journal is affiliated). This committee deliberated for some time on the exact focus and form of the journal.
Revisiting the Gramscian legacy on counter-hegemony, the subaltern and affectivity : toward an 'emotional pedagogy' of activism in higher educationAuthor Michalinos ZembylasSource: Critical Studies in Teaching and Learning (CriSTaL) 1, pp 1 –21 (2013)More Less
This article seeks to revisit Gramsci's legacy on counter-hegemony, the subaltern and affectivity, by focusing on the implications of his cutting-edge position on the role of subaltern feelings in the formation of an 'emotional pedagogy' of activism in the context of higher education. Three insights follow from this analysis. First, Gramsci's work facilitates an understanding of how affect and ideology are entangled. Second, Gramsci's concepts of counter-hegemony, the subaltern, and the organic intellectual in relation to his views about the unity of reason and emotion offer points of departure for activism, especially small acts of everyday life that often go unnoticed. Finally, Gramsci's concern with the emotional potential of subaltern subjects shows how important it is to consider subaltern passions as political resources that challenge hegemonic conditions and formulate strategic counter-hegemonic responses in higher education.
Journeys across difference : pre-service teacher education students' perceptions of a pedagogy of discomfort in a digital storytelling project in South AfricaSource: Critical Studies in Teaching and Learning (CriSTaL) 1, pp 22 –52 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.14426/cristal.v1i1.4More Less
Understanding and managing diverse classrooms is an important competency for teachers in South Africa today. Critics of the dominant approach to teaching on and with difference in pre-service teacher education argue that it mostly promotes de-contextualised celebrations of diverse cultures without addressing critical issues of power and social forces. One of the reasons that educators shy away from engaging with issues of power and privilege in the classroom is the fear of highly explosive emotions that might emerge. However, proponents of the 'affective turn' (Berlant, 2008; Ahmed, 2004; Ahmed, 2010; Clough and Halley, 2007; Gregg and Seigworth, 2010) in the Social Sciences argue that it is important to work with the emotions that govern our classrooms for social transformation in students to happen.
This study pilots an innovative approach for teaching on and with difference in a South African pre-service teacher education classroom, combining a digital storytelling process with participatory learning and action techniques and a reflective essay. Framed by Boler and Zembylas' (2003) work on the politics of emotions and feminist writings on the role of affect and public feelings, we explored how students experienced and negotiated their cognitive and emotional journey in this project. An interpretive analysis of data collected through focus groups with selected students revealed that this classroom was a divided, complex and contested space, but through interplay of emotional and cognitive labour as part of sharing and listening openly to each others' stories, students began to critically engage with unspoken emotional rules and power dynamics governing the classroom and their lives, disrupting some deeply rooted beliefs and assumptions.
Bearding the capability deprivation machine : the pedagogical deal for post-Apartheid young South AfricaAuthor Crain SoudienSource: Critical Studies in Teaching and Learning (CriSTaL) 1, pp 53 –79 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.14426/cristal.v1i1.8More Less
The purpose of this essay is to reflect on how we in South Africa are managing the task of higher education in an environment marked by poverty. The paper makes the argument that the question of how to proceed when considering the relationship between the phenomenon of poverty and the experience of education is regularly resolved through invoking the syllogism that increased levels of education will bring about increased levels of income. Drawing on Sen and his ideas of capability deprivation, it is contended here that income-deprivation ideas by themselves do not adequately encompass the full complexity of how deprivation works. The approach taken here, therefore, is different. It works with the proposition that education needs to respond to the full range of social, cultural and other inhibiting factors with respect to the development of capabilities. Positing, therefore, the contention that human beings need to flourish in all the areas of their social lives and not just the space of work, the paper argues for the need to develop an education system that works with capabilities that are valuable in the full range of social spaces young South Africans inhabit. Using this introduction as a point of departure, the paper begins with an attempt at characterising the phenomenon of poverty and then moves on to look at the challenges the sector faces in teaching and learning with respect to it. Thereafter it provides an overview of the sector's responses to these challenges and finally, drawing on the idea of capability deprivation, makes a critical assessment of these responses.
Taking a longer view : processes of curriculum development in the Department of Graphic Design at the University of JohannesburgSource: Critical Studies in Teaching and Learning (CriSTaL) 1, pp 80 –102 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.14426/cristal.v1i1.6More Less
In the face of the complex array of competing pressures currently faced by higher education, globally, nationally and institutionally (Maistry, 2010; Clegg, 2005) academic staff who are required to reconceptualise their curricula are often tempted to focus on the immediate demands of the classroom rather than the broader knowledge and curriculum-related issues which inform pedagogical practice. In this paper we argue that opportunities should be created for staff to consider knowledge domains and the curriculum in all its dimensions from a distance and in a more nuanced, theoretically informed way (Clarence-Fincham and Naidoo, forthcoming; Luckett, 2012; Quinn, 2012). The paper aims to show how a model for curriculum development which mirrors the three tiers of Bernstein's pedagogical device was used in the field of Graphic Design as a means of facilitating a deeper, more explicit understanding of the nature of the discipline and the values underpinning it, the kind of curriculum emerging from it and the student identities associated with it. (Bernstein, 1999, 2000; Clarence-Fincham and Naidoo, forthcoming; Maton, 2007). Drawing on staff responses during early curriculum development workshops, examples from the curriculum as well as data emerging from group discussion and individual interviews, it identifies a range of positions about several aspects of the field of Graphic Design (Maton, 2009) and the related curriculum. This reveals both areas of agreement as well as contestation and provides a solid platform for further interrogation and development.
Author Lucia ThesenSource: Critical Studies in Teaching and Learning (CriSTaL) 1, pp 103 –122 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.14426/cristal.v1i1.10More Less
This paper brings writing into the contested space of research and knowledge-making in South Africa. An often hidden dimension of research is that it has to find expression in a written product, increasingly in English. This creates challenges for both students, who have developed writing identities in other domains, disciplines and languages, and also supervisors and journal editors who are gatekeepers for the making of new knowledge. In a competitive and uncertain climate where discourses of risk management play an increasingly important part, people tend to play it safe when it comes to writing, conforming to a narrow image of scientific writing. This has consequences for knowledge-making as students often set aside the experiences, allegiances and styles they have developed along the way. Drawing on data from an international publishing project on risk in academic writing, the paper explores dilemmas around the process of research writing. These instances make the contradictions and tensions faced by writers and gatekeepers central, highlighting the importance of voice and risk. Both voice and risk are explored experientially and theoretically, with the emphasis on the potentials of risk. The concept of risk, not as risk management, but as risk-taking, offers new ways of thinking about writing that brings the decisions that writers and readers make to the fore. A focus on risk has the potential to offer new understandings about the changing landscapes in which writers and readers weigh up their options against notions of what is 'normal'. Finally I suggest edgework as a productive concept that can take work on risk forward in both research and pedagogy.
Author Glynis CousinSource: Critical Studies in Teaching and Learning (CriSTaL) 1, pp 123 –136 (2013) http://dx.doi.org/10.14426/cristal.v1i1.11More Less
Qualitative researchers are often compelled to defend their methods and associated underpinning philosophy to researchers from other cultures of inquiry. This is particularly so where academics from a variety of disciplines are undertaking research into teaching and learning from a non-social scientific background. This article examines how we might best mount a defence of the qualitative tradition for teaching and learning research through the identification of: a) the commonalities between quantitative and qualitative research approaches; b) the relation between qualitative research and the humanities; and c) the distinctiveness of qualitative research. In discussing these issues I address reservations often expressed by those who are sceptical of the value of qualitative research, proposing that a fruitful way of explicating this value is to draw attention to affinities across cultures of inquiry.