ERIC Number: EJ1197588
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018
Abstractor: As Provided
Learning to Fall Forward: A Study of Teacher Courage, Equity, and Freedom in the Connected Learning Classroom
Baker-Doyle, Kira J.; Hunt, Michiko; Whitfield, Latricia C.
International Journal of Information and Learning Technology, v35 n5 p310-328 2018
Purpose: Connected learning is a framework of learning principles that centers on fostering educational equity through leveraging social technologies and networking practices to connect students with opportunities, people and resources in communities within and beyond their classroom walls (Ito et al., 2013). The framework has been adopted and developed in K-12 education by teachers in professional development networks and introduced to some teacher education programs through these networks. Practitioners of connected learning frequently refer to the need for "courage" to develop and introduce connected learning-based practices in their classrooms. The paper aims to discuss these issues. Design/methodology/approach: In this study, the authors investigate "courage" through a sociocultural lens in the case studies of six educators in a teacher education course on connected learning. The study examines the social contexts and activities that fostered acts of courage during their 14-week course. Findings: The authors found that personal reflection on freedom and equity, two ethical concepts raised by the connected learning framework, seeded acts of courage. The acts of courage appeared as small acts that built upon themselves toward a larger goal that related to the participants' ethical ideals. Three types of social activity contexts helped to nurture these acts: seeking models of possibility, mediated reinvention and "wobbling." Research limitations/implications: This study helps to uncover some of the questions that connected learning scholars and practitioners have about why courage is so central, and how to cultivate courageous acts of pedagogical change. Practical implications: The theoretical framework used in this study, courage from a sociocultural perspective, may serve to help scholars and teacher educators to shape their research and program designs. Social implications: This study offers insights into patterns of networked teacher-led educational change and the social contexts that support school-level impacts of out-of-school professional networking. Originality/value: Using a sociocultural conception of courage to investigate connected learning in teacher education, this study demonstrates how equity and freedom, central values in the connected learning framework, serve as key concepts driving teachers' risk-taking, innovation and change.
Descriptors: Teacher Education Programs, Social Influences, Context Effect, Reflection, Equal Education, Ethics, Individual Characteristics, Ideology, Graduate Study, Large Group Instruction, Online Courses, Relevance (Education), Freedom, Elementary School Teachers, Secondary School Teachers, Faculty Development
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Elementary Education; Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A