On Becoming an Innovative University Teacher: Reflection in Action

On Becoming an Innovative University Teacher: Reflection in Action

On Becoming an Innovative University Teacher: Reflection in Action

On Becoming an Innovative University Teacher: Reflection in Action

Synopsis

On Becoming an Innovative University Teacher shows readers how to plan, run and monitor innovative activities to engage their students in effective reflective learning. Each chapter begins by posing a question with which university and college teachers can be expected to identify, then answers the question by presenting a series of examples; thereafter the writer frankly airs his own second thoughts on what he has offered.

Excerpt

Just as the second edition of this book is rather different from the first, so this Preface is very different from its predecessor. The first version of the rewritten preface provoked my good friend Alan Harding to comment helpfully that I had explained how the book came to be written, but not why it had been written. He urged me to concentrate upon two obvious questions which I had not considered explicitly. These were why I had written a book, after all these years without so doing; and why someone who is starting out on a teaching career should buy or borrow this volume, and take time to read it. Both questions troubled me considerably. I did not have a ready answer for either, but I saw the need to focus this Preface upon them.

Why did I decide to write a book? Come to think of it, why had I accepted invitations over the years to speak at staff development events in Britain, and to work, usually unpaid, on educational development abroad? Why had I even agreed in later years to write chapters for other writers' books, on specific topics? I couldn't immediately pinpoint an answer which convinced me, but I knew the answers I could reject. For a start, I haven't ever had it in mind to have an improving impact on higher education in general. Indeed, Graham Gibbs described me recently (Gibbs, 2004) as someone paddling energetically in his own idiosyncratic canoe, trying to pull the supertanker of higher education on to a different course, without any discernable effect on the progress of that juggernaut. Equally, I have never seen myself as an educational evangelist, charged to persuade colleagues to sign up to the pedagogical banner to which I adhere; for I have always simply regarded it as my primary function to provide the best possible education for the students entrusted directly to my care. Certainly I am not a seeker of professional advancement; even when Napier University awarded me an honorary degree, the citation accurately recognized me as someone who preferred the anorak to the suit, who was more at home and effective at the grass roots than in the corridors of power. So I feel fairly comfortable with my selfjudgement that I have not written a book to change higher education, nor to promote my pedagogical philosophy, nor for vainglory. Why did I do it, then?

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.