22 SES 01 B, Teaching under (Re)Construction: Diverse Perspectives
The purpose of this study is to examine the reception of Bologna Reform in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) and its relation to the culture of learning and teaching at the university. The reform is here viewed as a “didactic challenge” which leads to transformation of culture of learning and teaching. However, in order to implement changes in a culture, change in the mindset of the individuals, actors of the reform, is needed. We take stance that in order for a reform to result in changes in the culture of learning and overall didactic reality it is necessary for its agents to understand and accept change that is implied by the reform.
The understanding of the concept of reception in this study is inspired by Hans Robert Jauβ reception theory in literary studies. In this theory, a text is not simply passively accepted by the audience, but the individual actively participates interpreting meanings of a text based on her/his context and life experiences (Jauss, 1982). Therefore, a single phenomenon can produce various interpretations and different receptions.
The research hypothesises that educational reform is not only an act of educational politics, but rather a process of re-thinking oneself, personal attitudes and practices, as well as a process of (re)inventing personal instruction philosophy and strategies of learning and teaching. As it is stated in the key documents of the Bologna Reform, it is originally named as Bologna Process, implying graduality in implementation of reform measures. At the same time, the Bologna is a process by its gradual and ongoing mindset, attitudes and values formation required by any paradigm shift that is brought in by the reform.
Our approach in treating issues of instruction is grounded in curriculum theory, from the one side, and constructivist approach, from the other. Curriculum theory emphasises the interrelation of instruction and society, the nature and scope of education planning and, generally, views education, learning and teaching as socially constructed realities (Müller, 2000; Westbury, 2009; Yates, Grumet, 2011). On the basis of this, the culture of learning and teaching is defined as an instruction paradigm that is ruling the university context at a certain point of time.
From the constructivist perspective (Klafki, 1995; 1998; Terhart, 2003; Arnold & Siebert, 2006; Siebert, 2008; Murphy & Fleming, 2010), both processes – reform and learning – lead to reconstruction and reinterpretation of the existing reality. A person or system is faced with the need to learn the strategies of functioning in the new reality, requiring a specific competence for change.
The main research questions include the following:
- How is the general reception of Bologna Reform of Higher Education in the academic community of Bosnia and Herzegovina? We are interested in the main actors, dynamics, quality and actions undertaken since the ratification of Bologna Declaration in 2003.
- What challenges in the philosophy of teaching and learning have been posed by the Bologna Reform? How are those challenges perceived by the academics?
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