ECER 2021 in Geneva proposes to investigate the tensions that exist between the broad social, political and economic demands placed on education systems and the realities of daily engagement with learners and those connected to them at all stages of the education continuum. Addressing this dichotomy between the, at times, contradictory prescriptions, injunctions and demands placed on education systems and the needs of individual learners and learning communities has been central to much educational research and the process of reconciling the, often conflicting, demands that emerge will be at the heart of this conference.
Geneva was one of the main crucibles of the New Education movement which, at the beginning of the 20th century and after World War I in particular, placed so much hope in the education of the human to build a better future. Thus when choosing a main theme for an ECER organised in this international city, it seems appropriate to raise the issue of tensions between the realities or social contexts within which the education process takes place and the stated aims of formal education as a collective, mandated endeavour, in as much as that has at its heart an understanding of the centrality of human personal development.
As a product of the societies that build, finance and manage it, the educational institution and its actors are caught in many dilemmas: supporting balanced and equitable educational provision in an increasingly challenged and challenging social and political environment; acknowledging the need for diversity, inclusion and openness to difference while at the same time recognising the need for an agreed set of shared values and practices; recognising the legitimate interest of the broader polity in the content, practices and structure of education while also keeping at the heart of educational provision the needs of individual learners and learning communities. The additional challenges of enabling educational communities to be transparent, open and responsive to the changing needs and requirements of the social and learning communities they serve and are part of is also of central importance.
Seeking to reconcile these different conceptualisations of the purpose and practice of education and educational research leads to the emergence of many research questions: is the objective of formal education uniquely the transmission of knowledge or should it be understood in larger ways and what does this mean? How can knowledge transmission in educational settings contribute to the solving of social problems? How far does education help the development of the citizen and what kind of citizenship is envisaged?
During ECER in Geneva, the 33 EERA networks and the emerging researchers group will engage and explore the various facets of the tensions experienced during the first decades of the 21st century in educational settings.
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|Early bird ends|
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Université de Genève - Uni Mail
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