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ERIC Number: EJ1146406
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0965-948X
Teaching Sensitive Issues: Psychological Literacy as an Antidote to Pedagogic Frailty
Winstone, Naomi E.; Kinchin, Ian M.
Psychology Teaching Review, v23 n1 p15-29 2017
Many topics within the psychology curriculum can be described as "sensitive", with potential for students to experience distress and discomfort. Given the pressure experienced by academics in Higher Education, the potential for student distress or complaints might lead lecturers to adopt a risk-averse approach to teaching, which is well represented by the concept of Pedagogic Frailty (Kinchin et al., 2016). Through interviews with nine psychology lecturers, we uncover the common concerns that arise when teaching sensitive topics, and the strategies employed to overcome these concerns. We also suggest that where teaching is strongly influenced by the values underpinning Psychological Literacy, those teaching sensitive topics may be less vulnerable to the characteristics of Pedagogic Frailty, as the risks associated with the teaching of sensitive topics are offset by the perceived importance of exposing students to sensitive topics. The implications for the teaching of psychology are discussed.
British Psychological Society, Division for Teachers & Researchers in Psychology. St Andrews House, 48 Princess Road East, Leicester, LE1 7DR, UK. Tel: +44-1162-529551; Fax: +44-1162-271314; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A