Project

ProLernen: Professionalization of educators and educational leaders through learning research with vignettes

Goal: Quality assurance has been a central challenge for educational work for decades. Whereas until now the focus has been on the performance of students and the associated question of how their learning can be optimized, in recent years the focus has increasingly shifted to the professionalization of educators and educational leaders and the further development of their "key competencies for lifelong learning".

In order to study learning in heterogeneous groups, the phenomenologically oriented vignette was developed as a research tool at the University of Innsbruck. It describes in dense scenes the learning experiences of students at close range. This results in differentiated insights into learning, which are made usable for the professionalization of future pedagogues (elementary, primary, special and vocational education, sec. I+II) and future pedagogical leaders within the framework of the project "ProLernen". The vignette is thus used as a professionalization tool in the training of pedagogues and pedagogical managers at tertiary educational institutions (universities, teacher training colleges) as well as for school development (incl. kindergarten and other formal educational institutions) and quality management.

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Vasileios Symeonidis
added a research item
In 2008, the New Secondary School Reform (NMS-Reform) was launched throughout Austria as a pilot project with the aim to avoid early tracking at the age of 10, initially intended as the integration of the NMS and the AHS (grammar schools in Austria). In conjunction with this educational policy steering, two studies were financed by the Austrian Fund for the promotion of scientific research (FWF) in order to examine the learning of pupils in all nine provinces of Austria. In order to investigate learning in heterogeneous learning groups, an innovative research approach had to be developed: Hence, the data collected were condensed into concise descriptions of scenes of school experience, so called phenomenologically oriented vignettes. Contrary to those studies on learning that focus on the result and not on the process and its origins, a phenomenon-based approach and thus a vignette focuses on how learning takes place, i.e. which meaningful and irritating phenomena the learners are exposed to on their path of experience. Thus learning, understood as experience, always occurs when the agreement between one's own expectations and the accomplishments is no longer given and the old experiences no longer “carry”. In order to pay sufficient attention to these phenomenon-based learning experiences, an attitude “beyond teaching” has to be adopted. In this perspective – in contrast to constructivist views – learning should neither be conceived as only self-determined nor as only externally determined. The purpose of the paper presented is to showcase the theoretical and empirical foundations of this new attitude “beyond teaching” in the field of education within the Austrian political and educational framework. Continuing, the focus is on the following question: What kind of phenomenon-based teaching is needed and what are the implications for European teacher education?
Vasileios Symeonidis
added a research item
This article aims to provide insights on a phenomenological approach to educational research through the use of vignettes. The specific approach was developed at the University of Innsbruck in Austria in order to explore students’ learning experiences as they occur in the classroom. A vignette is a thick description of the lived experience of the researchers and stays as close as possible to the experience of the research subjects in the field. After creating a vignette, the process of reading follows, during which the researcher adopts different perspectives to analyse the phenomenon under study. The article provides an example of a vignette and its reading. Vignettes can help us to reclaim the pedagogical dimension of learning by raising educational questions from a pedagogical perspective and by supporting pedagogical action.
Vasileios Symeonidis
added a research item
Die Schwierigkeit, Phänomene des (Nicht-)Verstehens (empirisch) angemessen zu erfassen, wird in diesem Band aus einer breiten (inter-)nationalen und (inter-)disziplinären Perspektive erläutert. Wir alle kennen Erfahrungen des Verstehens und Nicht-Verstehens und wir erfahren diese teilweise als schmerzhaft, beunruhigend oder schwierig. Die Herausforderung, (Nicht-)Verstehen verstehen zu lernen, ist eine respektable. In diesem Band finden sich Grundsatztexte zu unterschiedlichen theoretischen Verständnissen der komplexen Phänomene des Verstehens und Nichtverstehens, forschungsmethodologische Erörterungen angemessener Zugänge zu ihrem empirischen Erfassen sowie praktische Beiträge zur genuin pädagogischen Aufgabe, (fachliche und fachdidaktische) Verstehensprozesse in Unterricht, Schule, Lehrer*innenbildung und Universität zu fördern. Die internationalen Beiträge aus der Schweiz, aus Deutschland, Südafrika und Griechenland helfen in besonderer Weise, Verstehensprozesse und -erfahrungen in Kontexten über Österreich hinausgehend zu diskutieren. Dass der in Innsbruck entwickelte und in Forschungsgruppen in Brixen, Klagenfurt, Wien und Zürich weiterentwickelte Ansatz der phänomenologischen Vignetten- und Anekdotenforschung für Bildungskontexte über spezifischen Kulturen oder Kontexte hinaus attraktiv ist, ist bemerkenswert. Potential und Grenzen dieses Zugangs werden in vielen Beiträgen nicht nur thematisiert und in unterschiedlichsten theoretischen Ansätzen diskutiert, sondern auch in verschiedensten Bildungskontexten auf seine Wirkmächtigkeit hin erprobt.
Evi Agostini
added a project goal
Quality assurance has been a central challenge for educational work for decades. Whereas until now the focus has been on the performance of students and the associated question of how their learning can be optimized, in recent years the focus has increasingly shifted to the professionalization of educators and educational leaders and the further development of their "key competencies for lifelong learning".
In order to study learning in heterogeneous groups, the phenomenologically oriented vignette was developed as a research tool at the University of Innsbruck. It describes in dense scenes the learning experiences of students at close range. This results in differentiated insights into learning, which are made usable for the professionalization of future pedagogues (elementary, primary, special and vocational education, sec. I+II) and future pedagogical leaders within the framework of the project "ProLernen". The vignette is thus used as a professionalization tool in the training of pedagogues and pedagogical managers at tertiary educational institutions (universities, teacher training colleges) as well as for school development (incl. kindergarten and other formal educational institutions) and quality management.