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Title: Opening the space of variation and learning during teaching: the importance of research to discipline-based expertise
Contributor(s): Hathaway, Tanya (author); Tozer, Mark (author)
Publication Date: 2010
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Abstract: This article draws on theoretical and research-based analysis to elaborate on the linkage between teaching and research in higher education. By employing the perspective of variation theory and taking a phenomenographic approach to analysis, we describe the qualitatively different ways in which university teachers experience the phenomenon of expertise in their disciplines. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 20 university teachers from two higher education institutions in the UK. A range of ways of understanding expertise was constituted in the form of three qualitatively different categories of description. These show varying focus on the experience from expertise as the ability to impart facts and transfer knowledge; expertise as experience in a field and knowing how to do something; and expertise as developing holistic understanding and the ability to think in certain ways. Key aspects of variation in focus across the categories emerged through two themes: the role of experts in learning and how experts attend to knowledge. The empirical relations between the ways of experiencing the phenomenon were explored to provide insight into university teachers' beliefs about ways of knowing in their discipline and the implications for the openness of the space of variation and learning created during teaching.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Pedagogic Research in Maximising Education (PRIME), 4(2), p. 84-97
Publisher: Liverpool Hope University
Place of Publication: Liverpool, United Kingdom
ISSN: 1744-2494
Field of Research (FOR): 130103 Higher Education
130313 Teacher Education and Professional Development of Educators
130202 Curriculum and Pedagogy Theory and Development
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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