Moving forward together: engaging students through research and inquiry

Professor Mick Healey, Centre for Active Learning, University of Gloucestershire, UK

 

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Abstract

"We want all students to access the benefits exposure to teaching informed by research can bring. ... We believe an understanding of the research process – asking the right questions in the right way; conducting experiments; and collating and evaluating information – must be a key part of any undergraduate curriculum.” (Bill Rammell, UK Minister for Higher Education, 2006, 3)
This presentation explores how students may be engaged by involving them in research and inquiry so that they are seen as potential producers and not just consumers of knowledge.  It is argued that all undergraduate students in all higher education institutions should experience learning through and about research.  The key to mainstreaming undergraduate research and inquiry is to integrate it into the curriculum.  The theme is illustrated with numerous mini-case studies from different disciplines and institutions in Australasia, Europe and North America.

Mick Healey is Professor of Geography at the University of Gloucestershire, UK and Director of the Centre for Active Learning, a nationally funded Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning.  He is also Director of a National Teaching Fellowship Project on ‘Leading, promoting and supporting undergraduate research in the new university sector’.  Mick is an experienced presenter.  Since 1995 he has given over 300 educational workshops, seminars and conference presentations in Australasia, Europe, North America and South-East Asia.  He has written and edited around 150 papers, chapters, books and guides on various aspects of teaching and learning in higher education. In 2006 he was HERDSA Visiting Fellow in New Zealand and in 2008 he was the keynote speaker at the launches of the Australian Learning and Teaching Council’s project ‘Achieving Teaching Research Connections’ in Perth, Brisbane and Melbourne.  He is often asked to act as an advisor to projects, universities and national governments on aspects of teaching and learning in HE.

Some recent publications on engaging students through research and inquiry

  • 2004 Engaging students in active learning, Cheltenham: University of Gloucestershire, Geography Discipline Network and School of Environment (Healey M and Roberts J Eds) 140pp (ISBN: 1 86174 145 6) http://www2.glos.ac.uk/gdn/active/student.htm
  • 2005 Linking research and teaching exploring disciplinary spaces and the role of inquiry-based learning, in Barnett, R (ed) Reshaping the university: new relationships between research, scholarship and teaching McGraw-Hill/Open University Press, 67-78
  • 2005 Linking research and teaching to benefit student learning, Journal of Geography in Higher Education 29(2), 183-201 – Received JGHE Biennial Award, 2005-06
  • 2005 Institutional strategies to link teaching and research. York: The Higher Education Academy (Jenkins A and Healey M) http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/resources.asp?process=full_record&section=generic&id=585
  • 2006 Strengthening the teaching-research linkage in undergraduate courses and programmes, in Kreber, C (ed) Exploring research-based teaching, New Directions in Teaching and Learning, San Francisco: Jossey Bass/Wiley, 45-55 (Healey M and Jenkins A)
  • 2007 Linking teaching and research in departments and disciplines. York: The Higher Education Academy (Jenkins A, Healey M and Zetter R) www.heacademy.ac.uk/rtnexus.htm
    2007 Critiquing excellence: undergraduate research for all students, in Skelton A (ed) International perspectives on teaching excellence in higher education London: Routledge (Jenkins, A and Healey, M) 
  • 2008 Linking research and teaching to benefit student learning: research context, developments and future directions, Journal of Geography in Higher Education 32(2), 163-166
  • 2008 International perspectives on student perceptions of research: the role of academic development in implementing research-based teaching and learning in higher education, International Journal for Academic Development 13(3), 161-173 (Turner N, Wuetherick B, and Healey M)
  • 2008 Learning for life: engaging students as active learners, HE Academy Annual Conference, Harrogate, 1-3 July (Healey M, Mason O’Connor K, Broadfoot P) http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/resources/detail/events/conference/Ann_conf_2008_Mick_Healey_andco
  • 2008 Developing students as researchers, UC Magazine October, 17-19 (Magazine of University College Union) (Healey M and Jenkins A)
  • 2009 Developing the student as a researcher through the curriculum, in Rust C (ed) Improving Student Learning through the Curriculum, Oxford Centre for Staff and Learning Development, Oxford Brookes University, Oxford: OCSLD (Jenkins A and Healey M)
  • 2009 Developing undergraduate research and inquiry York: The Higher Education Academy (Healey M and Jenkins A) forthcoming
  • Forthcoming The research-teaching nexus: A case study of students’ awareness, experiences and perceptions of research, Innovations in Education and Teaching International (Healey M, Jordan F, Pell B and Short C)