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Research dissemination within and beyond the curriculum


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Author: Dr Helen Walkington, Oxford Brookes University.
Keynote Presentation at the Research - Teaching in Wales 2011 Conference, 13th - 14th September, Gregynog Hall, Newtown (Powys)

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Research dissemination within and beyond the curriculum

  1. 1. Research-teaching practice in Wales 2011 Conference Keynote RESEARCH DISSEMINATION within and beyond the curriculum Dr Helen Walkington
  2. 2. Outline <ul><li>1. Why disseminate Undergraduate Research? </li></ul><ul><li>2. ‘Authentic’ settings within and beyond the curriculum </li></ul><ul><li>3. Dissemination – the benefits for students </li></ul><ul><li>4. Implications for the curriculum </li></ul>
  3. 3. ONIONS Think global – act local?
  4. 4. Sweepstake! <ul><li>TESCO onions come from 3 farms: </li></ul><ul><li>New Zealand </li></ul><ul><li>Spain </li></ul><ul><li>England </li></ul><ul><li>Conventional production (not organic) </li></ul><ul><li>Rank in order of lowest to highest carbon footprint </li></ul>
  5. 6. IMPACT of research <ul><li>Food labelling and marketing – food miles or carbon labelling? </li></ul><ul><li>Purchasing behaviour - Buy British? Or Think Local and Buy Global? </li></ul><ul><li>DEFRA </li></ul>
  6. 7. Student recycling and waste minimisation <ul><li>Findings: </li></ul><ul><li>RECYCLING </li></ul><ul><li>Situational </li></ul><ul><li>Box provision, Habit of recycling </li></ul><ul><li>WASTE MINIMISATION </li></ul><ul><li>Psychological </li></ul><ul><li>Action driven by environmental concern </li></ul><ul><li>LA recommendations: </li></ul><ul><li>RECYCLING </li></ul><ul><li>Good provision </li></ul><ul><li>Remove barriers </li></ul><ul><li>Make it easy </li></ul><ul><li>WASTE MINIMISATION </li></ul><ul><li>Connect people to create a norm </li></ul><ul><li>Education and information </li></ul>
  7. 8. Robertson, S., Walkington, H. (2009) Recycling and waste minimisation behaviours of the transient student population in Oxford: results of an online survey. Local Environment : The International Journal of Justice and Sustainability 14 (4), 285-296. Willingness to minimise waste Claimed recycling behaviour Gender Age University Type of accommodation Environmental concern Waste concern Environmental knowledge Attitude towards recycling Normative influence Box provision
  8. 9. Student as … <ul><li>Consumer (Molesworth et. al. , 2010) </li></ul><ul><li>Client (Bailey, 2000, Journal of Management Education) </li></ul><ul><li>Producer (Neary and Winn, 2009) </li></ul><ul><li>Co-producer (McCulloch, 2009) </li></ul><ul><li>Change agent (Dunne & Hutchinson, 2010 with QAA) </li></ul><ul><li>Expression: </li></ul><ul><li>Teacher – Student relationship built through pedagogy & LTA strategies </li></ul>
  9. 10. Student as … Ref:– ladder metaphor from Arnstein, 1969; descriptors adapted from Hart, 1992 3.4.4 “A research-informed curriculum will enable learners to benefit from collaboration in a research community as producers of knowledge through research-based learning” 1. Students are assigned but informed 2. Students are consulted and informed 3. Staff initiated, shared decisions with students 4. Student initiated and directed 5. Student initiated decisions shared with university staff Student engagement with research Levels of participation
  10. 11. Self-authorship - the central goal of HE in the 21st Century (Baxter-Magolda, 2004) Understanding research and participation in the research process, are central to the needs of undergraduate students in HE (Jenkins and Healey, 2007) Context “ Education must begin with the solution of the teacher-student contradiction, by reconciling the poles of the contradiction so that both are simultaneously students and teachers ” (Freire, 1970, p. 72).
  11. 12. The Undergraduate Research Experience <ul><li>Research cycle </li></ul><ul><li>Mind the gap! </li></ul>
  12. 13. Average learning retention rates Teaching others Lectures Audio-visual Reading See a demonstration Discussing in a group Put into Practice 5% 10% 20% 30% 50% 75% 90% Adapted from NTL Institute for Applied Behavioural Science
  13. 14. Theoretical framework <ul><li>Undergraduate research is for all students (Walkington & Jenkins, 2008) </li></ul><ul><li>In a social constructivist approach students ‘co-construct’ knowledge via dialogue with each other and their teacher as part of an academic ‘community of practice’. </li></ul><ul><li>(Vygotsky, 1978; Lave & Wenger, 1998) </li></ul><ul><li>“ Every university graduate should understand that no idea is fully formed until it can be communicated, and that the organisation required for writing and speaking is part of the thought process that enables one to understand material fully. Dissemination of results is an essential and integral part of the research process. ” (Boyer Commission, 1998: 24) </li></ul>
  14. 15. <ul><li>2. ‘Authentic’ settings beyond the curriculum </li></ul>
  15. 16. <ul><li>Wikipedia pages </li></ul><ul><li>Websites, blogs </li></ul><ul><li>Exhibitions / Shows </li></ul><ul><li>Podcasts, video </li></ul><ul><li>Journal articles </li></ul><ul><li>Client presentations for Consultancy projects </li></ul><ul><li>Conference on Undergraduate research (CUR) – Field Department, School, Faculty, University, BCUR </li></ul>‘ Assessment of authentic performance’ (Yorke, 2005)
  16. 17. <ul><li>Student video presentation: </li></ul><ul><li>(CD production in Spectrum </li></ul><ul><li>building, Swindon) </li></ul>Aperture 1 – Next year’s cohort Group wiki report: This provides a resource for successive cohorts Spectrum Building, Swindon
  17. 18. Aperture 2 – the discipline <ul><li>Artists' Books Collection. Department of Printmaking </li></ul><ul><li>Wiki catalogue of hand-made artists' books (some by Brookes students). Wiki is public but aimed at the discipline. </li></ul><ul><li>Students will contribute their own artefacts using wiki template. </li></ul>
  18. 19. Aperture 3 – Public Blog <ul><li>Year 1 Architecture students. </li></ul><ul><li>Technology: OB1 blog </li></ul><ul><li>Tutor-mediated student publishing to public blog and photo-sharing space (Flickr) </li></ul>Students very motivated to contribute to public blog visited by over 3000 people.
  19. 20. Aperture 4 – National Image source: Many disciplines!
  20. 21. Aperture 5 – Targeted Global communication <ul><li>Students are responsible for entire production process. Worldwide dissemination via Open Student Television Network </li></ul>&quot;the first and only free global 24/7 IPTV network for the HE community exclusively devoted to showcasing student-produced programming“ (OSTN, 2008).
  21. 22. UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH DISSEMINATION – guiding principles <ul><li>Build ‘publication’ into degree programmes </li></ul><ul><li>Use student research findings in the Curriculum </li></ul><ul><li>Student participation in the publication process. (e.g. editors/reviewers, sourcing articles, conference / event organisation, marketing and promotion, TV…) </li></ul><ul><li>Make effective use of digital technologies (wiki, blog…) </li></ul><ul><li>Scaffold publication opportunities (build confidence) </li></ul><ul><li>A quick activity… </li></ul>
  22. 23. <ul><li>3. The benefits for students </li></ul>
  23. 24. Inclusive and supportive Highly selective but supportive Values As a pedagogical tool to benefit Brookes geography students To establish a national journal for undergraduate research in Geography Purpose ‘ Light touch’ refereeing Undergraduate student editor 4 postgraduate reviewers Rigorous refereeing across 4 institutions 8 academic staff editors 16 postgraduate reviewers Process Showcase the range of research work carried out in the department. A professional publication to showcase top quality undergraduate research Aim Departmental , geography students National , piloted at 4 universities initially Geography Student body Geoversity GEOverse Journal
  24. 25. GEOverse: online journal of undergraduate research in Geography <ul><ul><li>AIMS </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>to allow students to develop research writing skills in a supportive but rigorous environment of review  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>to expose students to the process of academic publication  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>to allow high quality undergraduate research to be accessed in the public domain </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Postgraduate students gain reviewing experience </li></ul></ul>
  25. 26. <ul><li>1. Sense of achievement </li></ul><ul><li>“ With the possibility of actual publication, it invoked a sense of pride and so I felt that the quality of my finished article was higher than usual.” </li></ul><ul><li>2. Understanding </li></ul><ul><li>3. The creative process </li></ul><ul><li>4. Sense of ownership </li></ul><ul><li>5. A more critical approach to sources </li></ul><ul><li>“ you have the knowledge to be critical and the work is more personal so you have a different outlook on other journals researched.” </li></ul><ul><li>6. Synthesis of skills </li></ul><ul><li>“ It has allowed me to bring together all the skills I have been trying to learn throughout the university period.” </li></ul>Impact of writing articles on SLE
  26. 27. <ul><li>Ownership </li></ul><ul><li>Understanding </li></ul><ul><li>Creativity </li></ul><ul><li>CV </li></ul><ul><li>Academic recognition </li></ul><ul><li>Further communication / dialogue </li></ul><ul><li>Motivation to publish more </li></ul>From student to author Achievement Applying constructive criticism Critical evaluation Writing Publication
  27. 28. <ul><li>What’s new? </li></ul><ul><li>CV material, Masters places, job interviews </li></ul><ul><li>Sending link to friends / family / other students </li></ul><ul><li>More emphasis on applying constructive criticism </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ critical evaluation of any piece of work, my own or others” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ trust the advice of others” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Feedback that improved my work. Desire to talk through feedback rather than relying on technology, desire to clarify feedback , desire to open up the communication process </li></ul><ul><li>Motivation to publish more articles (community of practice?) </li></ul>The experiences of students who had their work published.
  28. 29. Feed forward <ul><li>‘ Initially I found it quite hard as I felt the reviewers brought to light the mainly negative aspects of the article, and had overlooked the hard work that had been put in. Once I realised that their job was to provide suggestions to improve the article and not to point out all the positive elements I was able to view the comments in a positive light. I also really appreciated the accuracy of the feedback once I had completed the article as it really made my work stronger and of a higher standard’ (Student author) </li></ul>
  29. 30. Challenge - The desire for dialogue <ul><li>‘ The only thing that may have improved it for me would have been the opportunity to talk through the feedback in a meeting with an editor, as e-mail communication can sometimes be limited’ (Author) </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Challenging as the remarks on my work were via e-mail, so I could not directly speak to the editors about concerns and questions that I had, or to clarify their comments’ (Author) </li></ul><ul><li>‘ I think perhaps there should be a way in which anonymously the author could then get back to the reviewers either through a wiki… for feedback. For example, if we made a comment and they were not sure what I was talking about there was no feedback from the reviewer to the author, it always goes through the editor, which I didn’t think was necessary. It would have been much easier if they’d gone back to the reviewer’ (Reviewer) </li></ul><ul><li>‘ I wanted feedback on my first review from an editor’ (Reviewer) </li></ul>
  30. 31. <ul><li>Dialogic dissemination </li></ul>URC / CUR 3.7.3 “Learners will have the opportunity to engage in formal and informal learning environments which … promote their ability to engage actively and creatively in learning, research and professional communities both within and beyond the institution.”
  31. 33. <ul><li>Research literacy - How to create and present an academic poster </li></ul><ul><li>Academic literacy – Confidence; recognition as a disciplinary researcher </li></ul><ul><li>Critical self awareness & personal literacy - Critical thinking and reflection through dialogue, immediate in-depth feedback </li></ul><ul><li>Employability (SESE) </li></ul><ul><li>Authentic performance </li></ul>Presenting at an informal conference – the benefits for students
  32. 34. <ul><li>… concise writing, filtering, clarifying the message, empathy for the reader, structure, design, signposting … </li></ul><ul><li>Expectations: </li></ul><ul><li>Students researched how to produce academic posters </li></ul><ul><li>Some met as a group to critique and give feedback on each other’s posters before the event </li></ul> Research literacy How to create and present an academic poster ‘ I found making the poster rewarding as I could summarise my dissertation in a few hundred words which brought the project into focus’
  33. 35. <ul><li>‘ Learning the right style ’ </li></ul>‘ negotiating rigour and academic conventions with an eye catching and powerful message’ ‘ I haven’t done a conference before, when people were coming up I wasn't really sure if they were going to look and like admire the posters and then walk off, or whether the were going to stand and want an in-depth discussion. Nine times out of ten they wanted an in-depth discussion.
  34. 36. Academic literacy Recognition as a disciplinary researcher Student engagement vs Student alienation (Mann, 2001) &quot;that conference was fantastic … staff in the department recognised me as a researcher , as a result I was a guest speaker in one of the geography modules, I met with a photo-journalist, I’ve gained a lot of key skills which are important for work as well.&quot; &quot;it has been nice just talking to people in a non-lecturer/student capacity, everyone was very much on equal terms , yeah that was the first time that has happened.”
  35. 37. Critical self awareness & personal literacy Critical thinking and reflection through dialogue, immediate in-depth feedback ‘ I think it allows some sort of self-criticality … It has opened up areas of thought for me that I wouldn’t have considered otherwise ’ ‘ It enabled you to become objective, to analyse your own work , to re-read your work.’
  36. 38. ‘ Normally only two or three people see your dissertation, so being able to share your research in this way makes all the hard work worthwhile.’ ‘ It’s amazing to see other people’s work presented like this.’ ‘ It’s a dual feedback system, the students coming to the conference get ideas about what they want to produce, and as someone presenting it is important for me to see how people interact with my ideas’
  37. 39. ‘ the unknown audience enhanced employability skills like dealing with people you don’t know ’ ‘ The job I'm going into I'm going to be doing a lot of presentations and meeting a lot of unfamiliar people and to a certain extent selling my ideas and my research , so it was good experience for me.’ ‘One of the lecturers said “You could suggest this to local councils.” I hadn’t thought about its REAL implications , I made this idea that people could take on but I didn’t really think about [it] being taken on by councils until that conversation.’ Employability (SESE)
  38. 40. Authenticity of the task <ul><li>‘ I wanted to get the message out about the Saharawis’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Research is to further science and should be published’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ It helps others learn and maybe they will take the research further’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Its an odd feeling knowing your work is up for criticism’ </li></ul>‘ I've done a poster presentation before in the undergraduate programme, but it was to an audience that I knew really well, in a controlled environment that I was completely familiar with, with an academic that I knew, it was very much routine, whereas here every time I spoke to somebody I gave a slightly different approach to it, like I explained it a different way, depending on the knowledge they already had’
  39. 41. Interviews revealed … <ul><li>… that students gain confidence as they become recognised as researchers </li></ul><ul><li>… students benefit from immediate in-depth dialogic feedback from academic staff and peers </li></ul><ul><li>… students describe their experience in terms of graduate attributes and employability skills </li></ul><ul><li>… students gained tacit knowledge of how to communicate in a new scholarly format </li></ul>75% Put into practice
  40. 42. <ul><li>4. Implications for the curriculum </li></ul>
  41. 43. Spot the difference! <ul><li>Writing an article – WRITTEN </li></ul><ul><li>Detailed feedback which improved work (better than given by module leader) </li></ul><ul><li>Critical skills (evaluation of any piece of work, knowing what a good piece of work should look like) </li></ul><ul><li>Apply constructive criticism of others & trust their advice </li></ul><ul><li>Structure </li></ul><ul><li>Sense of achievement and recognition (Masters) </li></ul><ul><li>LACKING A CONVERSATION </li></ul><ul><li>Presenting at a conference – FEEDBACK </li></ul><ul><li>Informal </li></ul><ul><li>Repetition allowed refinement </li></ul><ul><li>Depth of discussion </li></ul><ul><li>Critical thinking through discussion </li></ul><ul><li>Instant Feedback </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing work (deep) </li></ul><ul><li>Employability </li></ul><ul><li>Confidence boost </li></ul><ul><li>Critical reflection </li></ul><ul><li>Recognition as researcher </li></ul><ul><li>TOO LATE TO MAKE CHANGES </li></ul><ul><li>NO LEGACY </li></ul>FEEDFORWARD DIALOGIC
  42. 44. <ul><li>Timing can provide dialogic feed-forward (formative) </li></ul><ul><li>Conferences provide a ‘ real world ,’ ‘ authentic ’ yet informal and co-curricular research dissemination opportunity for undergraduates </li></ul><ul><li>Students create a digital legacy, request articles of selected research </li></ul><ul><li>Scaffolding within the curriculum (e.g. how to create an academic poster, in-class poster sessions / presentations, how to structure an article) can prepare students for research dissemination beyond the curriculum </li></ul>“ Students need more things like this, especially before their dissertation. More students should come. This should be in all schools.”
  43. 45. GA: Research literacy – curriculum implications Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Desktop research to try to answer provided research questions S2 - Student teams present preliminary findings for “feedforward.” S1 - Students frame own questions for group data collection in the field S2 – CUR S1 - Individual journal articles written for GEOverse
  44. 46. Principles <ul><li>CLOSE THE RESEARCH GAP through ‘dissemination’ </li></ul><ul><li>Students require structured experiences to ‘scaffold’ their learning, so that they have the confidence to share their research findings. </li></ul><ul><li>If we are committed to embedding undergraduate research we must also commit to embedding the teaching of dissemination skills in our curricula. </li></ul><ul><li>Strong student desire for dialogic feed-forward </li></ul><ul><li>Conference presentation is an efficient way of achieving dialogic objectives </li></ul>
  45. 47. <ul><li>We can personalise the curriculum through providing research opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>Commitment to linking teaching and research and student engagement with research in the curriculum needs to be explicit in institutional learning and teaching strategies </li></ul><ul><li>AUTHENTIC RESEARCH AND DISSEMINATION EXPERIENCES CAN BUILD COMMUNITIES OF PRACTICE </li></ul><ul><li>Institutional research cultures need to be inclusive of students as … researchers </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Student as … </li></ul><ul><li>(Teacher as learner) </li></ul>Conclusion Teacher’
  46. 48. Acknowledgements <ul><li>Funding: </li></ul><ul><li>Brookes Teaching Fellowship, GEES Subject Centre, Reinvention Centre Fellowship </li></ul><ul><li>Undergraduate researchers, postgraduate reviewers, Web & Wiki teams </li></ul>
  47. 49. References <ul><li>Baxter Magolda, M. B. (2004). Self-authorship as the common goal of 21st century education. In M. B. Baxter Magolda & P. M. King (Eds.), Learning partnerships: Theory and models of practice to educate for self-authorship (pp. 1-35). Sterling, VA: Stylus. </li></ul><ul><li>Boyer Commission (1998) Reinventing Undergraduate Education: A Blueprint for America’s Research Universities. Stony Brook, New York: Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. </li></ul><ul><li>Crowe, M. & Brakke, D. 2008. Assessing the Impact of Undergraduate Research Experiences on Students: An Overview of Current Literature CUR Quarterly 28 (4), 43-50. </li></ul><ul><li>Freire, P. (1970) Pedagogy of the Oppressed. New York: Continuum. </li></ul><ul><li>Garde-Hansen, J. & Calvert, B. (2007) Developing a research culture in the undergraduate curriculum, Active Learning in Higher Education , 8(2), pp. 105-116. </li></ul><ul><li>Hart, R. (1992) Children’s participation: From tokenism to citizenship Florence, Italy UNICEF </li></ul><ul><li>Healey, M. & Jenkins, A. (2009) Developing undergraduate research and inquiry. Available at </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Huggins, R., Jenkins, A. & Scurry, D. (2007) Developing undergraduate research at Oxford Brookes University. Recommendations and models for future development. Available at: </li></ul><ul><li>Lambert, C (2009) Pedagogies of participation in higher education: a case for research-based learning, Pedagogy, Culture & Society, Vol 17, pp. 295-309. </li></ul><ul><li>Lave, J., Wenger, E. (1998). Communities of Practice: Learning, Meaning, and Identity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. </li></ul><ul><li>Mann, S.J. (2001) Alternative Perspectives on the Student Experience: alienation and engagement. Studies in Higher Education , 26 (1). pp. 7-20. </li></ul><ul><li>Vygotsky, L. S. (1978). Mind in society: The development of higher psychological processes. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press </li></ul><ul><li>Walkington, H. (2008) Geoverse: piloting a National e-journal of undergraduate research in Geography, PLANET , 20, pp. 41-46. </li></ul><ul><li>Walkington, H., & Jenkins, A. (2008). Embedding undergraduate research publication in the student learning experience: Ten suggested strategies, Brookes E-journal of learning and Teaching , 2(3), </li></ul><ul><li>Walkington, H. et al (2011) Embedding research-based learning and inquiry in the undergraduate geography curriculum. Journal of Geography in Higher Education. </li></ul><ul><li>Willison, J. & O’Regan, K. (2007) Commonly known, commonly not known, totally unknown: a framework for students becoming researchers, Higher Education Research and Development , 26(4), pp. 393-409. </li></ul><ul><li>Yorke, M (2005) Issues in the Assessment of Practice based professional learning. </li></ul>