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Emancipatory pedagogy for inclusive practices, enacting self-study as methodology

Emancipatory pedagogy for inclusive practices, enacting self-study as methodology

Title: Emancipatory pedagogy for inclusive practices, enacting self-study as methodology
Author: Guðjónsdóttir, Hafdís
Jónsdóttir, Svanborg R.
Date: 2016
Language: English
Scope: 299-304
University/Institute: University of Iceland
Háskóli Íslands
School: Menntavísindasvið (HÍ)
School of education (UI)
ISSN: 978-0-473-35893-8
Subject: Kennsluaðferðir; Kennaramenntun; Skóli án aðgreiningar
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11815/1869

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Guðjonsdottir, H. & Jónsdóttir, S.R. (2016) Emancipatory pedagogy for inclusive practices, enacting self-study as methodology. In Garbett, D. and Ovens, A. (editors). Enacting self-study as methodology for professional inquiry. Self-Study of Teacher Education Practices (S-STEP).


One of the challenges for teachers in the modern world is the continuous search for pedagogy to meet diverse groups of students in inclusive schools. Developing inclusive schools sometimes creates tensions for students and teachers, but at the same time offers opportunities for new ways of learning and teaching. We, three teacher educators, developed a course on inclusive practices for student teachers and teacher learners, and used self-study to understand and learn about the development of the course and how we improve our professional practice. Two of the team members are the authors of this chapter. The course Working in Inclusive Practices (WIP), is a blended course, taught through a mixture of online learning and four intensive sessions on-campus. The student group is diverse and consists of students with teaching experience and students working towards their teaching license, teachers teaching or intending to teach from pre-school to secondary school, and teachers with both international and Icelandic background. We base the development of the course on ideas of inclusive and innovation education. Inclusive education (IE) is an ideology that builds on universal inclusion, accessibility and participation of all students in school. The attitude towards diversity is positive and all students are welcomed (European Agency for Special Needs and Inclusive Education, 2014; UNESCO, 2008, 1994). It is an educational policy that consistently develops a system that offers equitable learning opportunities built on students’ resources. The accessibility to the school is not enough; all students must have the opportunity to participate in a valuable way. Inclusive schools call for teachers who have the competence and values to build on all students’ resources and are ready to transform schools towards inclusive practices (Guðjónsdóttir, et al, 2008). Innovation and entrepreneurial education (IEE) is about applying creativity and knowledge to meet needs or solve problems that learners identify and are important to them. The aims of IEE are to help people develop capacity for action and, critical and creative thinking through dealing with real-life issues (Jónsdóttir & Macdonald, 2013). We introduced IEE into the course as a creative approach that encouraged inventive ways to deal with challenges of living in the modern world, and in particular with becoming responsive teachers in an inclusive school. The core pedagogy of IEE has been defined as emancipatory pedagogy where learners are creative explorers and the role of the teacher is to be a facilitator rather than an instructor (Jónsdóttir & Macdonald, 2013). The fundamental process in IEE is looking for needs, finding solutions and presenting them or using in practice. That means for example that IE is a problem or a challenge and teachers and other practitioners have to figure out how to open up their thinking to find different kinds of solutions to respond to the different kinds of challenges. In IEE the roles of students and teachers are often reversed and the student can be the expert in his or her solution (Gunnarsdóttir, 2013; Jónsdóttir & Macdonald, 2013). Through the approaches and pedagogy of IEE we intended to support the student teachers develop creative teaching and learning for diverse groups of students in inclusive schools. These approaches, IE and IEE build on social constructivism where learning happens through social interactive processes and the learning community is developed through cooperation. Through reflection and dialogue, students gain the opportunity to develop new understandings and shape their learning (Farren, 2009; O’Donahue, 2003).


© 2016, S-STEP Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license, http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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