10 SES 09 A, Research in Teacher Education: Cultures and Methodologies
This paper reconsiders seemingly obsolete paradigm wars in education research, as a means to explain the continuing peripheralization of ‘context’ driven (Koutsouris and Norwich, 2018) qualitative and teacher-centred models of enquiry. Quietly enduring disparate philosophical and polemical positions in British education research, help to perpetuate tensions in the production and implementation of education policy into practice.
The authors adopt Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) (Fairclough, 2015) to examine education research, policy and practice, by exploring text produced by gatekeepers within each education context. Acting as a theoretical precursor to a future model for change in education research (see Lowing and Govender, in preparation), the research offers alternative perspectives for key players, by encouraging educationalists to recognise 'naturalized' polarised and entrenched positions within education research, policy and practice. The paper solicits change, where audiences, predominantly within education research and practice, are encouraged to claim further agency, by repositioning themselves in adopting more empowering methodologies for the study of the complex field of education.
The researchers adopt Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) (Fairclough, 2015) to examine the positioning of education research in academic, policy and practice within Education. The presenters employ CDA to engage with the approaches and ideologies embedded in policy and educational research, including research related to teacher education programmes, by unpacking the internal contradictions, slippages and misnomers contained therein. In particular we consider text within the General Teaching Council for Scotland website, promotional text for key British Education Research journals and polemical text produced within on-line platforms such as 'The Conversation' and 'The Times Educational Supplement'. We, as researchers, acknowledge that, “all texts are positioned and positioning” (Janks, 2010: p61); the writer “produce[s] effects that position the reader”, in order that the text is, “to be believed” (ibid.). We adopt Fairclough’s (2015) model of CDA, as ‘description’, ‘interpretation’ and ‘explanation’ of the text is enabled, encouraging “multiple points of analytical entry” (Janks, 1997: p329).
In conclusion, the researchers problematize the positioning of certain approaches to education research and the often 'tokenistic' use of 'enquiry-based' models of 'practitioner enquiry' in education policy and practice. Therafter, the researchers propose a model for change in practitioner research (see Lowing and Govender, in preparation), which requires education researchers and practitioners to claim further agency, by adopting emancipatory methodologies for the study of education.
Fairclough, N. (1995) Critical Discourse Analysis (London, Longman) Koutsouris, G. and Norwich, B. (2018) What exactly do RCT findings tell us in educational research?, British Educational Research Journal, 44(6), 939-959 Janks, H. (2010) Literacy and Power (Oxon, Routledge) Lowing, K. (in preparation) The Education Researcher is Dead; Long Live the Education Researcher! Closure from Crisis in Education Research Lowing, K. and Govender, N. (in preparation) Resurrecting the Educational Researcher: New Clothes for an Old King
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