Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Pedagogical Frameworks

While I'm not trained in all of these pedagogical frameworks through my education, the two that I have found most applicable to how I work and teach and learn are Bloom's Taxonomy and Critical Pedagogy.  

Bloom's Taxonomy has always served as a basis for course development, what are students to learn, and only after this development could learning and assessment pieces be added to the course.  Through this, and perhaps in some ways to contrast this, I'm a firm believer that learning facts or other information might be important, but is easily forgotten.  This is where critical pedagogy comes into play, it's not only important that something is 'correct' but to understand why it is so, to understand the issue, idea, etc. at a deeper level.  To relate it to the individual, to society, to not just throw a seed of knowledge out there, but provide multiple paths to deepen learning.

It's also important for me to think of student motivation.  It's no surprise that inherent motivation is a rare commodity within student populations.  It's a troubling question, when I ask how to motivate students when we only participate in a small sliver (regarding time) of their entire lives.  Motivation isn't an optional, it's a gatekeeper, and hence that is part of why Community 2.0 is important to me and I hope to learn much from everyone.

2.  In terms of classroom application, what I do now works quite well, but I look forward to STEALING ideas from the group!  :)

3.  I think my approach will look to utilize Web 2.0 tools to increase student buy in and motivation.  Some ideas brought up by the group meetings included having my speech students blog and respond to one another regarding the stresses that come along with public speaking.  While they could discuss this within the classroom, for the most part they avoid doing so.  I believe it's due to the face to face nature of the class, not wanting to admit weakness in front of their peers physically, but an online environment may provide the necessary conditions to permit this type of communication, allow students to provide support and their own strategies to assist their peers, etc.


  1. Thanks for the links for each of the frameworks!

  2. I just followed Rob "The RabbleRouser" Bruno's copy and paste mentality! :)

  3. Hi Mark,

    I very much enjoyed reading this blog entry, particularly in terms of your views on motivation and your notion that
    educators must "provide multiple paths to deepen learning."

    I think that, in some ways, as an instructor of public speaking, you have a bigger challenge than a lot of us in terms of using Web 2.0 tools. Tools that jump out at me, such as YouTube and Facebook, can be intimidating to students ("I have to post a recorded speech of myself WHERE??!!??). But your idea of using the blog for "buy-in" and as an outlet (and perhaps as a place where students can share tips/resources on public speaking) can foster a sense of community and the safety that often comes along with it.

    1. Thanks Nikki - you're right, I hesitate to even utilize social networks that student would commonly use for personal purposes. The idea of requiring a student to create an account or use their own makes me ask myself, do I have the right to ask the student to use this social space in this way, even with privacy options in place.

      I would certainly like to create a space where they can feel some sense of ownership over the content and even the direction of portions of the course.

  4. I completely empathize with your approach to teaching and student learning. Blooms approach allows the instructor to assess the individual student as well as the class as a whole.
    For the course that you teach it would present a challenge to have students provide feedback within the class hour, however I believe the use of the Web 2.0 tool would provide a less pressure filled environment for students to provide that feedback to their classmates which gives their work purpose. Once purpose is established I believe students are more inclined to remember important information.

    1. I completely agree, having another space might work well for them, even though there are limitations due to the nature of the course within the physical environment of 'class'.

      Thanks for your feedback Porsha :)

  5. Hi Mark,

    Your post really resonated on so many levels. The whole idea of students learning facts -- trying to memorize for an exam for example -- to spit the information back when they feel it is required, has always bothered me. I often wonder, when you get past the test, then what? This feels like an eternal struggle as I work with students in getting beyond the surface information; the facts. This seems to go hand in hand with motivation, and just how curious one is to understand the deeper levels. I want my students to be curious! I want them to enjoy learning for the sake of learning. I want them to be motivated to learn.

    I feel like all of these issues continue to take me back to what was obviously a pivotal time in my life -- when I was a young learner surrounded by others who seemed so intent on getting the grades and not necessarily learning. I am really curious to see how this seminar, and sharing with others like you, can help me develop the ways and means to cultivate that motivated student learner.

    1. You're right, facts without context and purpose - I can see why students lose that information quickly. My approach this semester is to have exams based on written responses only. I have told my students that the knowledge is only a part of the question, the utilization of it is another. So for instance, I might ask them at the start, "Provide the 5 parts of an effective introduction", and then springboard off of this to require them to create several examples of these and explain their importance.

      When we create and grade exams on the surface of knowledge, I feel personally like we're in a murky muddled 'what do we know about our students' type of place.

      It's wonderful to hear that you want your students to not only learn, but become true and deeper learners. :)