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From ‘Sage on the Stage’ to ‘Guide on the Side’: A Good Start

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Abstract

While the now-clichéd shift from ‘sage on the stage’ to ‘guide on the side’ that characterizes the changing role of teachers is a good start, it is just that – a start. In this paper, I argue for a detailed look at the concomitant shift in the role of students, as they leave the world of passive recipients and join the ranks of active participants in the teaching-learning nexus. The paper discusses the problematic conflation of the terms ‘information’ and ‘knowledge’ that surfaces in consideration of the shifting roles of teachers and students, and argues that, in addition to defining information and knowledge precisely, we must consider the significance of the processes that transform the former into the latter. And finally, I reiterate the importance of making these distinctions and defining these processes not in the abstract but, rather, in the context of the various disciplines.
International Journal for the Scholarship of
Teaching and Learning
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From ‘Sage on the Stage’ to ‘Guide on the Side’: A
Good Start
Charles D. Morrison
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From ‘Sage on the Stage’ to ‘Guide on the Side’: A Good Start
Abstract
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From ‘Sage on the Stage’ to ‘Guide on the Side’:
A Good Start
Introduction
It is now a well-worn cliché that the role of the teacher has
changed in a significant and positive way: no longer a ‘sage on
the stage’, the teacher now functions as more of a ‘guide on the
side’.
i
This change in function is embedded within the more
general shift from what might be termed a ‘teacher-centered’
model of education to a ‘student-centered’ model (or, even
better, and for reasons outlined below, a ‘learning-centered’
model). While few would argue against the logic behind this
shift, it is important to note that this functional change may well
be a necessary first step in the improvement of our educational
system, but on its own, the shift is insufficient in accomplishing a
pedagogical makeover. The teacher’s functional shift from sage
on the stage to guide on the side triggers at least two important
and highly interconnected corollaries: first, the concomitant
change in the student’s role, responsibilities, and obligations;
and, second, the necessary refinement of the distinctions
between ‘information’ and ‘knowledge’ and especially the
changes in the transformative processes between the two.
Before amplifying these two corollaries, however, let us begin by
examining the context for the shift, that from which it was felt a
shift was necessary in the first place.
As indicated at the outset, the sage-on-the-stage
characterization of the teacher’s role is synonymous with a
teacher-centered approach to education, in which the standard
lecture is considered to be the principal mode of delivery. And
delivery is in a very real sense precisely what most lectures
serve to do: deliver content from the one who knows to those
who do not know. (For now, I am using the more generic term
‘content’ and avoiding the terms ‘information’ and ‘knowledge’
deliberately.) Historically, when those ‘in the know’ were small
in number and access to factual content extremely limited, the
delivery or transmission of content was a necessary process,
arguably a positive end in itself. Although I will return to the
utility of the lecture later, suffice it to say here that the lecture –
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content delivery by a learned sage via a one-way transmission
mode – may well not be needed anymore as a means of
delivering or transmitting content, the latter now readily and
abundantly available virtually anywhere and anytime via
technology (even if that broad accessibility has come with its
own list of problems, not the least of which is the question of
accuracy). Rather, the sage is now free to stand aside, indeed is
encouraged to do so, and adopt more of a ‘guiding’ or
‘facilitating’ function.
From ‘Sage and Recipient’ to ‘Guide and Participant’
Now we enter the realm of the first of the two interrelated
corollaries of this shift in the teacher’s role. To repeat: the
corollary of the shift in the teacher’s role. As noted at the
outset, even if this shift is considered to be a positive and
necessary step, it references the change in role of only one of
the two partners in the teaching-learning relationship. After all,
the sage-on-the-stage characterization of the teacher has a
corresponding characterization of the student: call it what you
will – a passive note-taker, a receiver of content, an accumulator
of factoids. And, of course, this apparent passivity on the part of
students is one of the acknowledged problems with the sage-on-
the-stage/lecture format. All the more reason, then, that it is
important when celebrating the clichéd shift of the teacher’s role,
we include at least some discussion of the concomitant shift in
the role of the student.
The ‘before’ picture is clear: we have the ‘teacher-sage’
paired with the ‘student-content-receiver’. But in the new-and-
improved ‘after’ image, what exactly is the ‘teacher-guide’ paired
with? A shift in one surely necessitates a shift in the other and
unpacking the new responsibilities and practices of one
necessitates at least some suggestion as to the new
responsibilities and expected practices of the other. My point
here is not to imply that the responsibilities and practices of the
teacher-as-guide are greatly minimized, or are of secondary
import now that the shift has taken place, for that shift both
requires and facilitates numerous new and creative activities on
the part of the teacher. Rather, my point is that the role and
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responsibilities of students also need to be re-examined and
clearly articulated, particularly now that those responsibilities are
considerably more varied and self-directed than those required
simply to receive content passively from a teacher-delivered
lecture.
Those who place education’s problems squarely on
teachers, urging them to move beyond their outdated, wordy,
preachy – I’ve heard ‘high-falutin’ – lectures to adopt the role of
a guide, need to be reminded that this shift in and of itself will
not solve the problems, which are just as often a failure of
students to assume the responsibility to learn deeply. In what
follows, it will become clear what I mean by learning ‘deeply’,
but for now I will couple the teacher’s shift from ‘sage to guide’
with the corresponding student shift from ‘recipient to
participant’. Although somewhat clumsy, the phrase ‘sage-and-
recipient-to-guide-and-participant’ is an important reminder that
teaching and learning involve a dynamic interaction between two
partners; it is a reminder that, as the title of this paper suggests,
the sage-to-guide shift is only the start, only half of the equation
as it were. (In fact, I will suggest later that it is less than half,
and that the equation actually consists of three partners, not
two.) For ease, I will hereafter refer to the two-dimensional and
interconnected sage-and-recipient-to-guide-and-participant shift
as the ‘SaR2GaP’ shift.
There are many good examples of new opportunities and
responsibilities students are afforded when they become active
partners in the teaching-learning process and become more fully
engaged as participants rather then merely information
recipients.
ii
Most of the so-called ‘high-impact practices’ now
gaining currency in post-secondary education – practices such as
community service learning courses, undergraduate research,
flipped classrooms, problem-based education, to name a few –
are well documented and so I will not rehearse them in detail
here.
iii
Rather, it is on the second, interconnected corollary
flowing from the SaR2GaP shift, a shift that both facilitates and
requires the aforementioned new modes of student engagement
and participation, which I will elaborate. Recall that this second
corollary concerns the distinctions between information and
knowledge as well as the relationship of each to the processes of
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teaching and learning, before the shift as well as after. As I will
demonstrate, the terms ‘information’ and ‘knowledge’ are among
the most conflated terms in our discourse on education and, so,
unpacking the two terms will help to demonstrate, first of all,
that they are in fact distinct and, then, that they relate to each
other in particular ways and that each relates in specific ways to
the activities of teachers (as both sages and as guides) and to
those of students (as both recipients and as participants).
Distinctions Between Information and Knowledge
Education may be understood to be about many things,
but one thing is certain: it is fundamentally about the pursuit of
knowledge – its creation, its contextualization, and its
application. And although information and knowledge are
inextricably tied, as will be discussed, information in itself,
however abundant and accessible, is not necessarily knowledge,
at least not in any meaningful sense implicit in the educational
goal of ‘pursuing knowledge’. Possessing factual information, or
what is often termed ‘declarative knowledge’, essentially means
knowing that such and such is the case. I situate declarative
knowledge more towards the information end of the spectrum
because it is largely about information retrieval and
memorization – processes necessary for deep learning and
knowledge creation but, on their own, are neither evidence of
deep learning nor examples of knowledge creation.
Consequently, hereafter I will refer to declarative knowledge
simply as ‘information’.
When we speak of education being ‘about the pursuit of
knowledge’, then, we mean knowledge of a different type,
knowledge that, at the very least consists of information or
declarative knowledge that is subsequently ‘acted upon’ in some
manner or another. Consider Neil Postman’s definition of
knowledge as:
organized information – information that is embedded in
some context; information that has a purpose, that leads
one to seek further information in order to understand
something about the world. . . . When one has knowledge,
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one knows how to make sense of information, knows how
to relate information to one’s life, and, especially, knows
when information is irrelevant. (1999, p. 93)
The notions of ‘contextualizing’ information, leading one ‘to seek’
further information, knowing how to ‘make sense’ of information,
and how to ‘relate’ that information – these are good examples
of what I mean by ‘acting upon’ information. Raw, acquired,
memorized information is merely the gateway to processes that
generate meaningful knowledge for those acting upon that data.
This type of knowledge – knowledge that requires more
than mere information retrieval and memorization – is often
referred to as ‘procedural’ or ‘operative’ knowledge. Matthew
Lipman (2003) suggests that: “the focus of the educational
process is not on the acquisition of information but on the grasp
of relationships within and among the subject matters under
investigation” (pp. 18-19). And further reinforcing the
distinction between declarative and procedural/operative
knowledge, he asserts that:
Declarative knowledge consists of facts; operative
knowledge involves understanding where the declarative
knowledge comes from and what underlies it. Operative
knowledge also involves the ‘capacity to use, apply,
transform or recognize the relevance of declarative
knowledge in new situations’. (1991, p. 140)
Once again we see that the kind of knowledge relevant to deep
learning involves acting upon received or retrieved information,
whether by applying it, transforming it, or seeking to understand
its relevance in new situations. Hereafter, the term knowledge
refers to procedural/operational knowledge.
I must reiterate that by insisting on a clear distinction
between information and knowledge, I am in no way ignoring the
important role of information acquisition – even memorization –
in the learning process. It is not as if we can bypass the
information-acquisition stage and simply opt for knowledge as a
richer, more robust starting point. I am, however, suggesting
that information retrieval is only the first step in the learning
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process by which we utilize information – work with it,
interrogate it – to create knowledge and gain understanding for
ourselves.
iv
Moreover, deep learning not only involves
information and knowledge, but more importantly, it involves the
transformation of information into knowledge, and it is those
transformational processes that must be the focus of teacher-
student interactions and students’ own self-directed paths of
discovery.
And here I want to raise a flag concerning technology as it
relates to the notion of transforming information into knowledge.
As suggested above, knowledge creation starts with information,
ideally accurate information, and technology certainly has made
information plentiful and readily available. But as Neil Postman
(1999) quips,
[T]o say that we live in an unprecedented age of
information is merely to say that we have available more
statements about the world than we have ever had. This
means, among other things, that we have available more
erroneous statements than we have ever had. (pp. 90-92)
One of the problems, then, is that there is so much information
available to us that sorting it, assessing it for accuracy, and
especially deciding which of the seemingly endless possible
sources to assemble for later scrutiny, can take an enormous
amount of time. While some would argue that these are the
very processes that define learning and knowledge creation and
therefore should be undertaken by students, I suggest that these
are still only preparatory, information-gathering, stages to the
process of deep learning. Moreover, these information-gathering
preparatory stages may overwhelm the deep learning process to
the point that the retrieval and sorting processes are themselves
accepted as bona fide examples of learning and meaningful
knowledge construction, that they are considered educational
ends, not means. In an odd sense, we are back to the problem
originally cited in connection with the lecture-delivery format –
that retrieval and regurgitation of information, in this case made
abundantly, if randomly, available via technology rather than the
lecturer, are accepted as evidence of learning. Technology has
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given us great opportunities to mine huge amounts of
information; thus, the term is information technology not
knowledge technology, and for good reason.
Now, in an attempt to link the two corollaries of what I’ve
called the SaR2GaP shift, let us explore the distinctions and
relationships between information and knowledge as they apply
to teachers in their capacities both as sages and guides and to
students in their roles as receivers and participants, all with a
view to contextualizing the aforementioned processes of
transforming information into knowledge.
Transforming Information into Knowledge
One of the most frequently stated criticisms of the sage-
on-the-stage approach to education, and particularly of the
lecture-mode of delivery so clearly associated with that
approach, is that knowledge flows in one direction only, from the
teacher to the passive student. Matthew Lipman (2003) notes,
for instance, that among the dominating assumptions of the
standard model of educational practice is that “[E]ducation
consists in the transmission of knowledge from those who know
to those who don’t know” (p. 18, emphasis mine). And Ian
Angus (2009) suggests as much when he notes that “. . .
education has degenerated toward the simple ‘transmission of
knowledge’” (p. 82, emphasis mine). However, in light of the
distinctions rehearsed above, I would suggest that this is not
what happens in educational practice. In fact, I would go so far
as to say that it could not happen. While it is true that there is,
problematically, a unidirectional flow, with the passive student at
the receiving end, what is flowing, metaphorically speaking, is
not knowledge at all – again, not the rich procedural/operational
knowledge that defines deep learning – but, rather mere
information, or at best, declarative knowledge. Actually, it’s
even more complicated than that, because that which flows is, or
had better be, knowledge for the teacher but, as simply
received, is merely information to the student. Let me explain
this distinction.
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The processes of working intently and intentionally with
information to create knowledge – the curiosity-driven discovery;
the analysis, reflection, and synthesis of information; the
grappling with contradictions and the weighing of arguments –
all of these knowledge-generating processes and activities have
necessarily been undertaken by teachers; they are the ones who
have worked and reworked mountains of information,
transforming that information into synthesized knowledge for
themselves. Merely dictating their hard-won knowledge to
students yields only information by the time passive receivers
transcribe that content. That is, the passive-reception process
undertaken by students is not the critical-creative information-
to-knowledge transformation that teachers went through but,
rather, the reverse – a kind of knowledge-to-information
simplification and de-contextualization! What we want, of
course, is for students to participate in their own information-to-
knowledge transformative processes, obviously not processes
that are as complex and broadly based as those undertaken by
seasoned scholars, but transformative processes nonetheless.
So, although passivity on the part of students and the limitation
of student activity to simple reception, memorization, and
regurgitation are serious issues, there is a categorical
misunderstanding of what it is that students are passive about,
what it is that they are receiving in a lecture: what they are
passive about and what they are receiving is simply information.
And that is the problem.
Now, as alluded to at the outset, it should be easy to see
that merely having the sage step aside and assume the role of a
guide does not necessarily, much less automatically, correct this
information-knowledge conflation. What that shift does do,
however, is point back to the first corollary – the issue of the
student’s new role, now that the sage is not there to present in
the best-case scenario, impeccably researched, finely argued,
and clearly organized information for students to use as raw
materials in their own pursuit of knowledge and understanding.
In their new role as guides-on-the-side, teachers are better able
to share responsibility for the learning process with their
students as they adopt their new role, which requires them to
actively participate in the very processes of curiosity-driven
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analysis, reflection, synthesis, and discovery that scholars
routinely go through. So, while it may be true that the
definitions of and distinctions between the concepts of
information and knowledge are no different in the post-shift
scenario (that is, once teachers function as guides and the
students as participants), the seat of responsibility for
transforming information into knowledge and the processes by
which that occurs most certainly are different.
In light of the SaR2GaP shift, then, it behooves teachers to
facilitate the various information-to-knowledge transformational
processes for students, to make space for those transformations
to happen and to guide students in those pursuits
v
; but that shift
also underscores the fact that education is not about the
accumulation and regurgitation of passively received
information, and so the responsibility for actually engaging in
processes of information-knowledge transformation lies squarely
with the students. The need for students to keep up their end of
the bargain in this transaction is crucial. One is reminded of the
quip: “be careful what you wish for.” While students may want,
and indeed should have, a greater level of participation in and
control over their own learning processes, that new level of
participation requires considerably more investment (read:
effort) on their part.
Balancing Three Partners, Not Two: Enter ‘The Disciplines’
There is a bit of a catch-22 here: a teacher, in preparing a
finely-honed lecture, has already gone through the time-
consuming processes of information retrieval, analysis, sorting,
and evaluation, thereby eliminating the need for students to
waste endless hours surfing questionable information to tease
out the accurate and the useful. And yet, analysis, sorting,
evaluating were said to be among the very kinds of things
students need to be doing for themselves. Clearly, it is a
question of balance: encouraging students to engage
meaningfully and effectively in those processes themselves, but
guiding them in ways that discourage random, unfocused
searches for information that are sure to overwhelm them to the
point that the really creative processes of discovery, reflection,
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synthesis, within a carefully circumscribed body of information
become impossible or at least highly unlikely. In this sense –
and here is why my earlier language with respect to moving
beyond the lecture was somewhat cautionary – maybe we need
to be careful not to enter into a strict either-or scenario.
Perhaps the SaR2GaP shift should be recast into a both-and
composite, a kind of spectrum that allows for a flexible,
constantly and contextually shifting balance between the sage-
and-recipient and the guide-and-participant.
Once again, however, the situation is even more complex,
this time, for two related reasons. First, not only is education
not a tug-of-war between a teacher-centered model and a
student-centered one, it is not even (or only) a flexible and
constantly shifting of balance between the two, as I just
suggested as the best of those two options. In fact, as I will
suggest below, there really are three partners in the educational
mission. And second, I have been speaking of information and
knowledge as if there were one and only one clear definition of
each when, in fact, what counts as information and knowledge in
one context may be and often is vastly different in another.
These related elements of complexity reveal the role of the
disciplines as a vital third partner in the educational mission.
And to be clear, it is not that the processes themselves need to
be or even could be the same in all of their detail and across all
disciplines and learning contexts; rather, it is simply important
that some form of transformation from raw information into
useable and meaningful knowledge take place, and take place for
and by the students themselves in a disciplinary or even inter-
disciplinary context.
Education is not about pumping up the ego of the wise old
sage on the stage, around which everything and everyone else is
said to revolve. And it is dangerous to linger too long on the
notion that the student is at the centre of education, as this
raises all kinds of narcissistic nuances that I will not go into at
this point. A learning-centered model is a better characterization
for any number of reasons, not the least of which is that both
teachers and students are learners, both constituencies
transform information into knowledge and, arguably, motivations
and strategies for those transformational processes flow in both
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directions. But beyond that, if we are learning, we are learning
in the context of a particular discipline, or perhaps even more
than one. So it is important in weighing the benefits of the
different roles that teachers and students might play in the
learning process that we think of the disciplines as a third
partner in the conversation, perhaps even as the foundational
element that ties teacher and student together. This, of course,
is not a new idea. Already fifteen years ago Parker Palmer
(1998, 2007) introduced this idea with passion and eloquence,
suggesting that “the classroom should be neither teacher-
centered nor student-centered but subject-centered” and that
“we must put a third thing, a great thing [the subject] at the
center of the pedagogical circle” (2007, p. 119, emphasis in
original). All I’ve added here is the reminder that, in light of the
variety of disciplines in which education takes place, information-
to-knowledge transformational processes must not only take
place, but must do so within the parameters for knowledge
generation particular to those subject areas.
The disciplines themselves – their history, development,
and evolution; the problems and contradictions they raise; the
opportunities, indeed responsibilities, they generate for
consideration of contemporary contextualization – all of this
should be the source of students’ enthusiasm and curiosity. If
teachers, either as sages or guides, demonstrate genuine and
infectious enthusiasm and passion about the discipline, as indeed
they should, it is, again, not so much the sages or guides that
influence the students but the discipline itself about which they
are so passionate and in which they invite their students to
become deeply engaged. Once again we can turn to Palmer
(2007) for insight: “Passion for the subject propels [the] subject,
not the teacher, into the center of the learning circle – and when
a great thing is in their midst, students have direct access to the
energy of learning and of life” (p. 122). A given discipline,
subject area, Palmer’s third great thing, is a common thread
through all of our activities as teachers and learners – as
lecturers, guides, recipients, and participants – but our individual
relationships to that third great thing change depending on our
role at any given time.
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In the conversation about teachers’ roles as sages and
guides and students’ roles as recipients or participants, it is also
easy to ignore education – comprised of interrelated activities of
teaching, learning, discovering, and so forth – as that which is,
in part at least, responsible for preserving and protecting the
integrity of the disciplines, adding to our individual and collective
understanding of those bodies of knowledge as well as adding to
the bodies of knowledge themselves. In this sense, teachers and
students play an important role beyond that of sage, guide,
recipient, and participant; both parties also take on a crucial
‘curatorial’ role within, and for the purpose of preserving the
integrity of, their disciplines.
Conclusion
It all started simply enough, or so it seemed. What could
be more emancipating – for teachers, students, and for
education overall – than replacing the seemingly anachronistic
lecture, the talking head, with an environment filled with guides
and participants? Like most, I see this shift in a positive light,
though as mentioned, I do not support the notion of leaving the
lecture format behind entirely. My goals above were modest and
perhaps the messages embedded in those goals were too
obvious to have spent so much time outlining them. But it
seems to me that any discussion of the changing role of the
teacher absolutely must be accompanied by a robust analysis of
how the student’s role changes. I hope to have at least
contributed to that conversation.
Moreover, tied to the concept of learning are the twin
pillars of information and knowledge, a pair of terms I see as
being frequently conflated, often with negative consequences.
In addition to the conflation of terms, however, it is the
processes of transformation from information to knowledge that
I see as being misplaced at best or ignored at worst. Clearly,
with a shift in roles of teacher and student, both parties, not just
the teachers, must be actively engaged in such transformational
processes. And finally, the concepts of information and
knowledge themselves are highly dependent upon and unique to
the various disciplines; even more acutely tied to the disciplines
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are the processes by which we transform information into
knowledge. And so, the disciplines themselves must be
considered as part of the complex matrix that we call education,
part of the conversation in which we engage in the name of deep
learning.
I do not for a moment imagine that there is anything earth
shattering in what I have offered here, but I do believe we need
to keep these and other matters front and centre as we continue
the ongoing transformation of education. The interrelatedness of
education’s many and varied facets calls us to be aware of and
sensitive to the ripple effect of any single change we might
make. The very processes we undertake as scholars in our own
particular disciplines – discovery motivated by curiosity, analysis
prompted by contradiction, synthesis necessitated by multiple
theories and seemingly endless sources – these same processes
need to be brought to bear when we seek to fine-tune our twin-
pronged meta-discipline of teaching-and-learning.
Endnotes
i
This phrase was first coined in Alison King (1999).
ii
Elsewhere I have expanded on the various opportunities
available to, and especially responsibilities required of, students
as they develop as scholars and professionals in their chosen
fields. See Charles Morrison (2012).
There are other sources addressing students’ particular roles in
an educational environment that has moved beyond the
standard lecture format. See, for example, Maryellen Weimer
(2002), especially chapter 5.
iii
See, for example, Jayne E. Brownell, J. E. and Swaner, L. E.
(2010).
iv
It is important to note that creating knowledge for oneself out
of received information is not the same thing as, nor does it
require, the creation of knowledge that is new to the discipline;
13
IJ-SoTL, Vol. 8 [2014], No. 1, Art. 4
the process must at least yield knowledge that is new and
meaningful to the one transforming the information.
v
Again, I refer the reader to Charles Morrison (2012), which
considers contexts in which faculty may facilitate more engaged,
responsible, and scholarly forms of participation from their
students.
References
Angus, I. (2009). Love the Questions: University Education and
Enlightenment. Winnipeg: Arbeiter Ring Publishing.
Brownell, J. E. and Swaner, L. E. (2010). Five High-Impact
Practices: Research on Learning Outcomes, Completion,
and Quality. Washington, D.C.: Association of American
Colleges and Universities.
King, A. (1993). “From Sage on the Stage to Guide on the
Side.” College Teaching Vol. 41, No. 1 (Winter), pp. 30-
35.
Lipman, M. (1991). Thinking in Education. Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press.
Lipman, M. (2003). Thinking in Education (2nd ed.).
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Morrison, C. (2012). “Reconsidering Boyer: Fostering Students’
Scholarly Habits of Mind and Models of Practice.”
International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and
Learning Vol. 6, No. 1 (January 2012).
Palmer, P. (2007). The Courage to Teach: Exploring the Inner
Landscape of a Teacher’s Life (10
th
Anniversary ed.). San
Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
14
From ‘Sage on the Stage’ to ‘Guide on the Side’: A Good Start
http://digitalcommons.georgiasouthern.edu/ij-sotl/vol8/iss1/4
Postman, N. (1999). Building a Bridge to the Eighteenth
Century: How the Past Can Improve Our Future. New
York: Alfred A. Knopf.
Weimer, M. (2002). Learner-Centered Teaching. San
Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2002).
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In his Scholarship Reconsidered: Priorities of the Professoriate, Ernest L. Boyer argued for a conception of ‘scholarship’ that recognizes traditional research – what he termed the ‘scholarship of discovery’ – but which also includes the scholarly domains of ‘integration’, ‘application’, and ‘teaching’. His validation of teaching has spawned a virtual ‘industry’ devoted to what is now known as the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL). fIn this paper I seize upon the fact that, in the process of assembling his argument for better recognition of the range of faculty work, Boyer reconsidered the very concept of scholarship, arriving at a broader conception that highlights and celebrates a rich intersection of varied scholarly activities and practices. After introducing Boyer’s four domains of scholarship and summarizing the various scholarly activities – what might be termed the ‘habits of mind’ and ‘models of practice’ – that are associated with those domains, I use the faculty-teaching-scholar template that emerges to generate a map for the development of the student-as-scholar. There is, I believe, a serious need to balance the (quantitatively and qualitatively) great work on the faculty-teaching component of SoTL with an increased focus on the student-learning side. Finally, I demonstrate how the various scholarly habits of mind and models of practice that help define the student-as-scholar are potentially developed in teaching and learning contexts identified as ‘high-impact educational practices’. These scholarly habits of mind, models of practice, and high-impact practices are placed in the broader context of ‘purposeful pathways’, i.e., degree-level curricular and co-curricular plans that could be considered as analogues of faculty-scholars’ research agendas.
Five High-Impact Practices: Research on Learning Outcomes, Completion, and Quality
  • J E Brownell
  • L E Swaner
Brownell, J. E. and Swaner, L. E. (2010). Five High-Impact Practices: Research on Learning Outcomes, Completion, and Quality. Washington, D.C.: Association of American Colleges and Universities.
Building a Bridge to the Eighteenth Century: How the Past Can Improve Our Future
  • N Postman
Postman, N. (1999). Building a Bridge to the Eighteenth Century: How the Past Can Improve Our Future. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.