In the readings critical, complex and open pedagogical frameworks the classroom or a course were the analytic levels. As has been mentioned throughout people’s discussions of the semester, that there are some difficulties in applying this to certain courses. This, for me, has raised an internal question of what if we do this on the major/department level, and create a critical pedagogical arc?
For faculty, there can be challenges in operating within a system or structure that doesn’t support or advance these methods – pushback from the university, department and even students can temper adoption. For students, I wonder how having the freedom to learn in one course and then shoved back into the traditional format impacts motivation and drive in the long-term.
I wonder how student learning will be changed, particularly in STEM, if departments adopt an explicit critical pedagogical arc over the course of a program. While foundational courses adopt critical pedagogical techniques to the degree to which they can, sequential, high-level courses integrate techniques to an even greater degree of experiential learning, student-centered learning, collaborative course creation, etc. I wonder what would happen to knowledge if students could annotate readings and documents each semester to be used by others in the coming semesters, or for themselves in later courses.
I wonder what would happen if students and professors created a shared portfolio that traveled with the student from course to course throughout the major/program, sans grades. I wonder if this would allow projects and personal interest areas to extend beyond one semester or develop earlier in lower-level courses. This portfolio could be used to guide project selection in advanced courses, and continue student skill development started in one course in other courses over the entirety of their degree (this would not include FERPA related information, but a co-created evaluation of the experience, learning goals, self development goals which could be the basis for other professors to continue).
I wonder if this would create personalized knowledge/degrees, even within the “traditional” degree structures. I wonder if this would change the notion of ownership that students have over their education from passively “receiving/getting an education” to something more powerful. We discuss the freedoms that students take in this context, without fear of failure – I wonder if faculty, with support from the department, chairs and deans, would also take more risks. I wonder if there would be more collaboration between faculty with regard to structuring syllabus, projects, and knowledge development if classes were seen not as stand alone check boxes or requirements, but one part of an integrated whole development process, centered on the student.