Stop Posing, Start Teaching; EDUCATION nTEBOOK

By Elkin, Susan | Daily Mail (London), December 4, 2001 | Go to article overview

Stop Posing, Start Teaching; EDUCATION nTEBOOK


Elkin, Susan, Daily Mail (London)


Byline: SUSAN ELKIN;SUSAN ELKIN

JUST think about this. Phenomenographic research: methodical issues arising from a project investigating variation in the experience of learning technologies in teaching AD&C.

Got that? Good. Let's hope the audience at the 2001 British Educational Research Association conference, and inevitably pupils, benefited from hearing this paper by Linda Drew and Christina William of Brighton University.

For light relief the same audience might have listened to 'Out on a Saturday night: educators and their dilemma of discourse at the interface with the gay community', contributed by Max Biddulph and Cathy Gibbons of the University of Nottingham.

'Cutting the gene down to size: how can we teach about designer babies', contributed by Ralph Levinson of the University of London must have been riveting, too, just like 'Sexual bodies in the classroom: the tensions raised for UK policy and research' by Pam Alldred, Pat Smith and Miriam David of Keele University.

And how many people need to know about 'Social justice and the identity of Malawian women in education', as MichaelWatts of the University of East Anglia thinks wedo?

Does anyone seriously believe that these obscure obsessions, often larded with politically correct assumptions, are going to improve the quality of British education?

No wonder the population is suspicious of academics if this is the sort of thing so many of them are doing.

Literally hundreds of papers were delivered at the conference at Leeds in September. Their preparation must have taken many thousands of expensive hours.

BERA academic secretary Michael Bassey says the conference is 'for an audience of researchers. It isn't really aimed at teachers or the public'.

Odd - since it is the public which pays most of the costs. According to Mr Bassey about [pound]73 million is spent on what he refers to as 'the education research industry' in Britain every year. …

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