Penny Welch and Susan Wright
Susan Wright and Penny Welch
This article puts forward an experiential teaching method for becoming aware of, getting access to, and giving meaning to the sensory experiences that constitute and shape learning processes during social anthropological fieldwork. While social anthropologists use all their senses in the field, the preparation and processing of fieldwork are limited to certain senses. In accordance with the academic habitus, it is common to discuss theoretical texts pre-fieldwork and almost exclusively rely on making meaning of written fieldwork material afterwards. While cognitively produced textual sources and techniques of verbalisation (e.g. presentations) are extensively focused on, the body, emotional and sensory experiences are often overlooked in academic discourse and practices. The proposed experiential method integrates the dimensions of sensory experiences in classes, colloquiums and workshops, and brings into practice a teaching approach that includes the analysis of embodied knowledge and stresses its importance as an ethnographic source.
Stephanie A. Limoncelli
The increasing internationalisation of social science curricula in undergraduate education along with the growth of service-learning has provided new opportunities to join the two. This article offers a reflection and discussion of service-learning with placements in international nongovernmental organisations (INGOs), drawing from its application in an undergraduate globalisation course in the United States. I argue that service-learning can be a useful pedagogical approach for helping students to think actively about themselves in relation to other people, other places and as part of broader global and transnational processes.
Paula Booke and Todd J. Wiebe
The study of U.S. elections as a part of introductory political science courses has become an increasingly difficult endeavour as students encounter the ever-changing landscape of electoral politics. Instructors seeking to equip students with the skills needed to navigate this complex terrain may look for partnerships with library faculty and staff as a means of bridging the research gap faced by students in these courses. This article examines the efficacy of a course-embedded librarian and information literacy training as a means of increasing student research confidence and competence. The findings of our quasi-experiment suggest that students participating in a course with an embedded librarian, information literacy training and an assignment based on the training session reported higher levels of research confidence and demonstrated the use and understanding of selected information literacy skills and concepts.
Neriko Musha Doerr
Though the concept ‘global learner’ has become a buzzword in education, few have critically analysed it. This article examines three types of ‘unlikely global learners’ who are not usually considered global learners even though they could be, according to a current definition: Māori–English bilingual students in Aotearoa/New Zealand; an American student who studied abroad in the U.K. in ways not valued in the dominant study-abroad discourse of immersion; and immigrant English-as-a-Second-Language students in the U.S. I analyse what their erasure as global learners tells us, arguing that the notion of global learner acts as what Walter Benjamin calls a phantasmagoria that masks the power relations involved. Though critical of ‘global learners’ as a globalist concept, I call for expanding the notion in order to engage with current transformations in education.
Katie Kirakosian, Virginia McLaurin, and Cary Speck
In this article, we discuss how adding a final film project to a revised ‘Culture through Film’ course led to deeper student learning and higher rates of student success, as well as increased student satisfaction. Ultimately, we urge social science educators to include experiential projects in their courses that connect to all learning styles. Such projects should also challenge students to ‘create’, a task that requires generating ideas, planning and ultimately producing something, which, according to Bloom’s revised taxonomy, engages students in the highest cognitive process (). Although this class focused on the intersections of culture and film and was taught at an American university, we believe these lessons apply more broadly.
Barbara Grant and Penny Welch
This article considers the role of experiments in learning in movements to democratise higher education ‘under the rule of capital’ (). It focuses on the emergence of a new generation of ‘free universities’ in the United Kingdom, situating these in a historical tradition of educational experimentation and a current context of global movements for autonomy from the state, capital and dominating epistemologies. It argues that free universities can contribute to transforming the relationship between knowledge, university and society, but that these contributions are often invisible within the logic of the dominant institutional systems. Conceptualising the projects as struggles for autonomy renders these contributions visible and valuable for educational reformers working both within and independently of the university.
Free universities are diverse but loosely networked projects that resist repressive capitalist and state configurations of power by re-imagining teaching, learning and research on their own terms, often through radical and ongoing experimentation. Drawing from my own experiences as a co-founder and organiser of the Brisbane Free University, along with research I conducted with around twenty-five different free universities across the U.S.A., Canada and Mexico, I focus in this article on activists’ attempts to develop emancipatory counter-capitalist pedagogies. Using notion of the tension between ‘study’ and ‘education’, with the former connoting a vast realm of possibilities for learning and the latter pointing to the presence of pre-defined end-points, I ask: when does activists’ prefigurative work orbit around explicitly counter-capitalist end-points to learning (against capitalism), and when do they attempt to abandon end-points altogether, in favour of ‘radically open’ forms of ‘learning for its own sake’ (beyond capitalism)?