What is knowledge building


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knowledge building communities research project

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What is knowledge building

  1. 1. “Designing Knowledge Building Communities in secondary schools” research project 2012-2013I’ve treated this presentation as a ‘knowledge object’ and tweaked it to suit my context – Madeline Campbell, Westland High School, Hokitika madelinecampbell@westlandhigh.school.nz Originally by Kwok-Wing Lai (in charge of project) University of Otago College of Education wing.lai@otago.ac.nz
  2. 2. MethodologyTeachers will use the knowledge building pedagogy andKnowledge Forum to teach selected topics. Class and onlineobservations will be conducted. Online discussion notesportfolios will be collected. Teachers and students will beinterviewed. Participation data will be collected.Data CollectionThe Effective Lifelong Learning Inventory (ELLI) will beadministered to collect data on creativity, skills of learning howto learn, and collaborative learning skills.AnalysisContent analysis on the discussion notes and portfolios, socialnetwork analysis of the participation data, document analysis,thematic analysis of the interview transcripts, and statisticalanalyses on the ELLI data will be conducted.
  3. 3. Why is this research important?New Zealand is shifting from an industrial society to aknowledge society, and there is an urgent need todevelop young people’s competency to workcreatively and innovatively with knowledge. Thisresearch will provide evidence of how this can beeffectively done in secondary schools.Jane Gilbert (NZCER) has been working extensively toinvestigate how the shift to a knowledge societyimpacts education in NZ. 3
  4. 4. Information and communication technology has thepotential to support students to acquire themetacognitive, problem solving, collaborative, and‘learning how to learn’ skills that are required to workwith and create knowledge in the knowledge society.One of the very few technology-supported learningenvironments that is based on a well-designedpedagogical model is “knowledge buildingcommunities”. The goal of knowledge building is “theproduction and continual improvement of ideas ofvalue to a community” (Scardamalia & Bereiter, 2003,p.1370) and is based on the premise that all studentscan create authentic knowledge work and advancecommunal knowledge in their classes, similar to whatresearch and science communities do.
  5. 5. In a knowledge building community, students useKnowledge Forum, a Web-based networking softwaresystem designed to support knowledge buildingdiscussions with a set of scaffolding tools.Knowledge building communities have beensystematically researched internationally and havedemonstrated success in enhancing students’knowledge building competency. 
  6. 6. NZ secondary school knowledge buildingresearch project 2012-2013 aims…✺  The roles of teachers and the strategies they use to support students’ advancement of knowledge.✺  The effects of the knowledge building community on the change of students’ domain knowledge, ‘collaborative learning skills’, skills of ‘learning how to learn’, and ‘dispositions as a lifelong knowledge builder’.✺  How to develop a knowledge building culture in secondary schools. 6
  7. 7. The Knowledge Society…✺  Emergence of globalisation & the knowledge economy✺  Knowledge, not capital or labour, is the driver of economic growth✺  Global workers have to be able to adapt to technological innovations - the “mind workers”✺  “A knowledge-based economy relies primarily on the use of ideas…and on the application of technology” (The World Bank, 2003, p.xvii)TIME, December18, 2006) (Image from
  8. 8. The Knowledge Society…✺  Students should not reproduce knowledge, but “actively interact with it: to understand, critique, manipulate, create, and transform it” (R. Bolstad & J. Gilbert, 2008, p.39)✺  New Zealand students are to acquire the competency of becoming “competent thinkers and problem solvers, [that] actively seek, use, and create knowledge” (New Zealand Curriculum, 2007) (Image from TIME, December18, 2006)
  9. 9. The Knowledge Society…Workers in the 21stCentury are “globaltrade literate, sensitiveto foreign cultures,conversant in differentlanguages”(Eskew, CEO of UPS, Dec 2006) (Image from TIME, December18, 2006)
  10. 10. Teaching & learning in 2020…✺  Ability to communicate orally at a high level✺  Be reliable, punctual & show perseverance✺  Work with others in a team✺  Evaluate information critically✺  Manage own learning✺  Develop effective learning habits✺  Work independently✺  Be able to investigate problems & find solutions✺  Be resilient✺  Be creative, inventive, enterprising & entrepreneurial (UK Department for Education and Skills, 2006)
  11. 11. What is knowledge building?✺  The goal of knowledge building is “the production and continual improvement of ideas of value to a community” (Scardamalia & Bereiter, 2003, p.1370)✺  The role of the teacher is to guide learners to “engage in extended questioning and explanation- driven inquiry” (So, Seah, & Toh-Heng, 2010, p. 480).
  12. 12. What is knowledge building?✺  In Knowledge Building learners work in a community (in groups). They investigate a topic, ask questions, conduct research (readings, experiments, etc) & assess their progress.✺  Learners engage in online discussions to share, critique, build-on, and synthesize ideas that are new to their community.✺  Personal and communal knowledge is advanced.✺  Learners use a software called Knowledge Forum to support Knowledge Building.
  13. 13. Can learners create knowledge?✺  Real ideas but not copied ideas✺  Solutions to authentic problems useful to their community✺  Knowledge that can create further knowledge✺  Knowledge building as ‘theory building’
  14. 14. Twelve pedagogical principles of knowledge building…Real ideas, authentic problems Democratising knowledgeImprovable ideas Symmetric knowledge advancementIdea diversity Pervasive knowledge buildingRise above Constructive uses of authoritative sourcesEpistemic agency Knowledge building discourseCommunity knowledge, collective Concurrent, embedded, and transformativeresponsibility assessment
  15. 15. How do you contribute to knowledge building? Develop the three A attitude:  ✺  All ideas are acceptable ✺  All ideas are improvable ✺  All ideas become “knowledge objects” that belong to the knowledge community (Fong, 2010)
  16. 16. How do you contribute to knowledge building?Use the “PQP” system:   ✺  “Praise” – state what you think is a good idea, a helpful piece of information, or a point you agree with✺  “Question” – ask a question that will prompt you and the others to think deeper about the issue, or a question to help clarify a point✺  “Propose” – suggest a new idea, new information, new strategy, or new approach to solve your current problem of understanding (Fong, 2010)
  17. 17. How do you contribute to knowledge building?Ask good questions:✺  Big ideas – questions embedded with a number of concepts related to the curriculum✺  Authentic and related to real life✺  Interesting✺  Broad, ill-structured, multifaceted✺  Avoid descriptive or factual information, or questions with a simple answer (Chan, 2010)
  18. 18. How do you contribute to knowledge building?Understand the nature of text-based communication:✺  Lack of contextual cues✺  Absence of various communicative cues – auditory, visual, kinaesthetic, olfactory✺  Communication has to be explicit to avoid misunderstanding✺  A public forum - a complete record of everything✺  Flaming - argumentative, outspoken, increased group conflict✺  Conversational form of writing - continually responsive - somewhere between spoken dialogue & written interaction