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Preparing new paradigm researchers to transform educational landscapes

Taylor, P.C. (2012) Preparing new paradigm researchers to transform educational landscapes. In: 7th International Conference on Science, Mathematics and Technology Education, 4 - 7 November 2012, Sultan Qaboos University, Oman


Self-study of teaching using qualitative research methods is becoming popular amongst educational researchers in rapidly industrialising countries wishing to resolve the conflicting educational goals of preparing children for the modern world of science and technology whilst also sustaining their engagement in local cultures and languages. How can education respond creatively, ethically and meaningfully to this conflict of interests? Mohandas Ghandi famously entreated his people to “be the change you want to see in the world!” For educators undertaking postgraduate studies, transformative research into one's own teaching practice provides new methods for addressing this dilemma. Transformative research involves radical new ways of thinking and representation. Artsbased methods enable researchers to recover hidden cultural capital as they excavate their autobiographies, identify repressive practices as they politicise teaching, give voice to deep values and feelings as they explore ideals, and develop the skills and passion of professional change agents. This new paradigm research, which foregrounds the researcher’s emerging and complex subjectivity, cannot be validated in terms of the ‘gold standard’ of objectivity which regulates traditional research studies. Instead, alternative quality standards must be drawn from the interpretive, critical and postmodern paradigms which entered the educational research field over the past 30 years. In this presentation I shall draw on successfully completed doctoral studies by professional educators in Africa and Asia to provide practical examples of new research methods and their associated quality standards. The presentation will serve as an introduction to the symposium on transforming cultural landscapes.

Item Type: Conference Paper
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