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Welcome to our student profile pages where students past and present have shared their experiences of studying here at Oxford Brookes. Simply click though to the programmes you are interested in.
Thesis title: Solidarity as a civic virtue in citizenship education
My Masters dissertation was focused on the development of staff digital literacy through embedded use of learning technologies on a PG Cert programme. This study presented me with a number of possible tangents to explore and #x2013; for example, the factors contributing to teachers’ reluctance to use certain technologies. Whether I am still interested in these in three years’ time remains to be seen and, although I would like to investigate these in the short-term (perhaps as a focus for preliminary unit assignments), I am not particularly attached to following these ideas through for my EdD thesis. The way things are going, it is highly probable that by the time 2015 rolls around we will be in the midst of a widespread backlash against the technopositivist perspective, and and #x2018;explorations of reluctance’ will either be old hat, or redundant.
What I would really like to do and #x2013; although this will probably be old hat by thesis-time as well and #x2013; is to do some research that aims to improve the experience of those who are studying on free, open online courses. Such courses have notoriously high attrition rates, which are often conveniently explained with the suggestion that the participants got what they wanted and then left (if this is the case, it seems an extraordinary coincidence that what the participants want always seems to be scheduled in the first week of the course, rather than the fifth, or the eighth). Interrogating this assumption would require an examination of the experience of those who didn’t complete - who are hard enough to get hold of even on fee-paying courses. This recent piece of research by Kizilcec et al. attempts to explore disengagement on three open, online computer science courses, and makes some valuable conclusions around the use of learning analytics to monitor engagement. However I would like to explore disengagement in a more qualitative way, with a view to identifying features of the curriculum and the learning environment that have the potential to influence retention.
I am about to begin my first year on the Doctorate in Education programme, which requires the completion of units on Research methods and Academic Writing. Alongside my studies on these units and #x2013; and being employed full time as a Senior Lecturer at the University of the Arts London and #x2013; I am also about to complete some consultancy work for the Institute of Education and the Staff and Educational Developers Association. Also in this academic year I will be working on publishing the outcomes from my MA dissertation, and putting in proposals for the 2014 conference season.
I currently lead and manage units within the MA Academic Practice programme at the University of the Arts London. I have responsibility for the design, development and curriculum delivery of the portfolio of units contributing towards the UAL Initial Teaching Qualification, and teach, assess and support participants on these and other units of the programme as required. I also contribute towards the development of the MA programme as a whole, including external recognition and accreditation processes.
While in my current role I have also been a facilitator at summer schools for SEDA (Staff and Educational Developers Association), and for the First Steps in Learning and Teaching course at Oxford Brookes.