Through this course you will start to critically examine your own ideas about education, teaching and learning. The critique will be developed through engagement with theories and ideas developed through educational research. You will be encouraged to use these ideas to challenge or support your own ideas about education. Each week we will focus on one key question, using video lectures, key readings and challenges to explore some commonplace notions about education. With the guidance of the course team, you will be asked to use these ideas to critically reflect on your own understandings and experience. By the end of the course, you will have developed a personal response to the main question: what is your preferred future for education?
Week 1 - How do we learn? This week we explore the learning approach of the course, and start to question what "learning" means. Through exploring different models of learning you will gain an understanding of different approaches to, and perspectives on learning.
Week 2 - What is intelligence and does it matter? The focus this week is to challenge popular ideas around intelligence. We will consider what is meant by IQ, fixed intelligence, multiple intelligences and emotional intelligence, and the role that ideas about intelligence can play in encouraging or dissuading learning.
Week 3 - What makes a good teacher? This week we challenge images of teachers, and “good” teaching. We will be considering how teachers can support the learning process.
Week 4 - Can schools make a difference? The focus this week is to consider what roles schools play. We will explore assumptions that school improvement initiatives, and evidence on what makes a “good” school. Consideration will also be given to informal learning settings and other institutions of learning.
Week 5 - Why do governments fund education? This week the emphasis is on the relationship between education and schooling, and we shall explore neo-liberal ideas about education and economic prosperity, social justice and individual development and fulfilment.
Week 6 - What future for education? In this last week of the course we will consider the main challenges are for education and schooling into the future. By exploring different utopian visions for education, you will consider you own views on how education should develop into the future.
Dr Clare Brooks
UCL Institute of Education, University of London
Very good resource