Trust thyself – learning and letting go - Simon Moralee, Zoë Allman and Kerry Francksen (De Montfort University)

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This is a draft of the presentation that will be given at the HEA Social Sciences annual conference - Teaching forward: the future of the Social Sciences.
For further details of the conference: http://bit.ly/1cRDx0p
Bookings open until 14 May 2014 http://bit.ly/1hzCMLR or external.events@heacademy.ac.uk

ABSTRACT
This paper focuses on the duality of roles that students and lecturers play in sharing responsibilities for creating productive and worthwhile teaching and learning environments. Taking student-centred learning as a starting point, this paper focuses on university teacher fellowship projects that challenge students to take control of their learning as a means of democratising the learning experience. This means the lecturer is more facilitator and environment creator than sage or expert and advocates getting students to trust themselves to learn as well as getting lecturers to trust themselves and let go of control.

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Trust thyself – learning and letting go - Simon Moralee, Zoë Allman and Kerry Francksen (De Montfort University)

  1. 1. Trust thyself – learning and letting go Zoë Allman and Kerry Francksen (De Montfort University) Simon Moralee (Manchester Business School) Email / Twitter: zallman@dmu.ac.uk / @zoe_a kfrancksen@dmu.ac.uk / @kerryfrancksen simon.moralee@mbs.ac.uk / @simonmoralee
  2. 2. The background to today’s session  Our work focuses on the duality of roles that students and lecturers play in sharing responsibilities for creating productive and worthwhile teaching and learning environments.  Taking student-centred learning as a starting point, we were all recently appointed DMU Teacher Fellows and our projects challenge students to take control of their learning as a means of democratising the learning experience.  Our view is that the lecturer is more facilitator and environment creator than sage or expert and this approach advocates getting students to trust themselves to learn as well as getting lecturers to trust themselves and let go of control. HEA Social Science Conference, Birmingham, 22nd May 2014
  3. 3. The key message Do One Thing Differently (DOTD)  This is our underpinning principle and driving ethos  It doesn’t have to be a major change  In fact, smaller changes, more often, work really well HEA Social Science Conference, Birmingham, 22nd May 2014
  4. 4. Our stories  Zoe: Principal Lecturer, Media Production  Working as an academic in the same school where I was an undergraduate student, I’ve always approached teaching from the point of view of the student experience. Having sat directly on the other side I often question: what do I remember from lectures? What topics stayed with me? Which lecturers really got the point across? Reflecting on these and similar questions allows me to consider my teaching approaches, with the learner at the heart of every decision. HEA Social Science Conference, Birmingham, 22nd May 2014
  5. 5. Our stories  Kerry: Senior Lecturer, Dance  Having been engaged in learning and teaching across a range of disciplines (including dance, performing arts and music) for 15 years I have become more and more interested in how I might enable and facilitate opportunities for students to let go of, or open-up, their focus on end goals (for example ‘how do I get my ‘A’ grade’?) and actually engage in the process of learning from a positive position as a learner... I am interested in trying to enable learners to recognise that the acquisition of skills and knowledge as a continual process will lead them not only to their ‘A’ grade, but will offer them an understanding of learning and teaching that truly enables them to trust themselves as an effective learner, equipped to transfer their understanding across a range of contexts. Key to this has been interdisciplinary learning, where students from all of the above disciplines come together to work on creative and collaborative projects through the uses of creative technologies. HEA Social Science Conference, Birmingham, 22nd May 2014
  6. 6. Our stories  Simon: Lecturer, Health Care Management  Since coming into academia from the NHS seven years ago, my starting point has always been to try and understand what makes students tick and I always felt I wouldn’t be able to do that until I’d considered things from their point of view, until I’d walked in their shoes and sat in their seats, so to speak. Over several years I have endeavoured to approach ‘teaching’ more as an exercise in facilitative learning – to transmit some content and knowledge, but to ensure that at every opportunity students can talk, discuss, disagree, be confused and ultimately overcome that confusion, through a variety of different methods and approaches. HEA Social Science Conference, Birmingham, 22nd May 2014
  7. 7. Let’s get going!  You’ve been provided with some ‘vignettes’ of our experiences from across our disciplines of dance, management and media production  We want you to briefly read one or two of the vignettes and think about how you might take the principles, ideas or content provided in them and apply it to your own context (5 minutes).  Discuss this in pairs/threes (10 minutes)  Make a pledge to do one thing differently (DOTD) (5 minutes) HEA Social Science Conference, Birmingham, 22nd May 2014
  8. 8. HEA Social Science Conference, Birmingham, 22nd May 2014
  9. 9. Contact details  Zoë Allman, Media Production zallman@dmu.ac.uk / @zoe_a  Kerry Francksen kfrancksen@dmu.ac.uk / @kerryfrancksen  Simon Moralee simon.moralee@mbs.ac.uk / @simonmoralee Our blog: http://zallma00.our.dmu.ac.uk/2014/04/17/hea- social-sciences-conference-2014-trust-thyself- learning-and-letting-go/ HEA Social Science Conference, Birmingham, 22nd May 2014

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