Paterson’s Land 1.18
An Exploration of Secondary EFL Teachers’ and Students’ Perceptions of Extensive Reading in English and Its Implementation in Chinese Secondary Schools: A Longitudinal Case Study
In the past few decades, numerous studies have shown the benefits of extensive reading (ER) on L2/FL acquisition and development. However, very limited research has been carried out to explore the implementation of ER in L2/FL in the context of secondary schools. To contribute to the research in this area, I intend to carry out a one-year research project. Multiple case study will be employed as the research approach to investigate several ER programmes carried out in Chinese secondary schools. Purpose sampling will be utilised to select teacher participants from six secondary schools in three Chinese cities/provinces. The students of teacher participants will be recruited as student participants. Three semi-structured interviews (with teacher participants) and three surveys (with student participants) will be conducted at the beginning, in the middle and at the end of the school year. Besides, teacher participants will keep reflective teaching journals and collect documents of various forms relating to ER implementation. Near the end of the project, some students who show disconfirming evidence will be interviewed. During the analysis phase, quantitative data from questionnaires will be transformed into qualitative data, and then thematic analysis will be performed to interpret qualitative data. The core aim of the research is to build a model for ER implementation in Chinese secondary schools. Besides, the discovery of students’ perspectives may help EFL teachers design a more student-centred extensive reading programme. For EFL teacher training institutions, the outcomes of the research may contribute to the future pre-service and in-service teacher education.
Initial stories from a multimodal ethnography of school-based outdoor learning
This audio-visual ‘poster’ will share some stories from my ongoing ethnographic fieldwork with young children and teachers. I am using video and other media to investigate school-based outdoor learning as a ‘polyphonic assemblage’ and I will track some of the entanglements that I have noticed in the first months of working with two classes of five year-olds and their teachers. Teachers in Scotland are expected to use outdoor learning for a range of different purposes, and children’s time in or ‘connection to’ nature is being increasingly instrumentalised in relation to health and well-being, attainment and conservation outcomes. My research focusses on how outdoor learning might relate to learning for sustainability, but rather than concentrating on outcomes, starts with the intra-relationality of learners, teachers and non-human material environments and tries to follow some of this complexity. Through this short selection of audio-visual vignettes I hope to share some of my initial journey with the methods used in the study and my emerging understanding of how the children and teachers I am working with come to know the world through outdoor learning.
Returning to Azerbaijan as a researcher: The role of affective engagement
This article draws on initial findings from my PhD fieldwork conducted in my home country, Azerbaijan. The mentioned PhD study has been designed to explore five-year-old children’s interactions with digital technologies at home and their influences on family dynamics. Through
purposive sampling five families have been recruited to participate in data collection in the capital city, Baku. The case study approach has been applied to collect data through qualitative research methods such as online meetings, visual diaries and family visits that included house tours with children too. During family visits I have conducted observations and interviews with parents where they have also been invited to create their life and family trajectories to reflect on their childhood and its reflections on their child’s present life. Vygotsky’s (1987) cultural-historical theory consistent with Cole’s (1996) notion of prolepsis have formed a theoretical framework for the study. My initial reflections on the data led me to realizations of the significance of affects of the researcher, researched and their cultures. In particular, the affects of my multiple identities such as an insider, researcher, mother native Azerbaijani proved that the data are collected together/with/despite these affects and they should be acknowledged in research findings. I later came to see that, rather than being an inconvenience, thinking about these social encounters as affective engagements can provide valuable research insights. Rather than the researcher as participant being a methodological problem to be dismissed or overlooked by some researchers, it can provide a rich, if challenging, resource.
Listening for the voice of places
The Listening Guide was developed and reported by Carol Gilligan in 1982. She described the Guide as a method of analysing qualitative data by listening in different ways to interview transcripts and textual data, and focusing on the melodic interplay of voices. Using this method, the researcher explores the relationships and interactions between research participants, including the researcher as participant. This is achieved through a process of multiple readings or “listenings”: listening for the plot, for the voices of participant and researcher, for resonance, consonance and dissonance between what is said and the way it is said. This method centres on the voice of human participants; non-human participation is limited to the role of location as an element of the plot, i.e. “where did this take place”. As a consequence, non-humans may become invisible participants in the research process. Gilligan defines this form of analysis as one which acknowledges different voices and recognises the importance of research relationships, but the relationship with non-humans is not acknowledged or structured in its current form. Gilligan viewed this method as a frame to be adapted to fit the research aim and questions. With that in mind, this presentation will outline ways in which the Listening Guide can be used to listen for the voices of places, illustrated with examples from my research into the places of distance students. This process may be of particular interest to researchers who focus on the participation of non-humans in a feminist, posthumanist, more-than-human research context.
Canadian Adolescent Males’ Masculinities & Schooling Experience Based on Level of Emotional Restriction: A Mixed Methods Approach
Research on men and masculinities has tended to focus predominantly on the restrictive or negative aspects of males’ masculinities. This is evidenced, in part, by the amount of well-used quantitative measures designed to assess the harmful outcomes associated with the norms of masculine ideology. Although resiliency or resistance-focused research is available and growing, little research looks qualitatively in-depth at males who embody more positive attributes, especially as defined by these aforementioned quantitative constructs. To address these gaps, this presentation discusses the efficacy of the author’s current interdisciplinary research that uses an innovative mixed-methods hermeneutic phenomenological approach to explore the masculinities and schooling experiences of two subgroups of adolescent males—those who are the least emotionally restricted and those who are the most, as defined by their Normative Male Alexithymia scores. Reasons are given for this multi-paradigmatic design and how it could create openings for new forms of research and critical insights to emerge in the fields of masculinities and education. In so doing, this paper directly connects to the conference theme of ‘innovative research methods.’ It is also argued how research-oriented around a single norm of hegemonic masculinity, and examining the maximum variation on either side of that norm, may prove to be a strategic way of supporting feminist-led movements in their goal towards equality. The paper concludes with a discussion of the possible findings and implications this research may have for the studies of masculinities and education, as well as for school settings
Adaptive Expertise in Transplant Surgery: The Effects of Changing Organ Retrieval Practice on Individual and Team Performance
There are currently over 6,000 people on the UK national transplant waiting list. The number of organs donated each year does not meet the demand, and it is the job of the organ retrieval teams to make sure that every donation counts. Alongside efforts to advance technological aspects of organ preservation, maximise efficiency of the service and refine surgical techniques it is equally important to investigate the application of such advancements by individuals and teams. This research was carried out in collaboration with NHSBT to support their initiative to test the viability of a new team configuration for organ retrieval teams across the UK. The study sample included 95 multi-organ retrievals across the UK (approx. 50% of all multi-organ retrievals attended by the participating teams). Data were collected by validated psychometric scales to assess teamwork and individual workload, anxiety, confidence, demands and coping resources. Additionally data were collected through open comments contained in response forms and quantitative data describing context (e.g. duration) and outcome of retrieval. Comparisons were made between retrievals using the new (Vanguard) and the current (Standard) team configurations. Despite successful use previously of the proposed team structure in Scotland, this study demonstrated a significant negative impact on abdominal organ retrieval teams in Vanguard configuration. These findings have informed NHSBT’s decision to suspend the introduction of the new configuration across the National Organ Retrieval Service and highlighted the need to use human performance analysis as an essential part of successful development in organ retrieval practice.
Multi-Agency Emergency Teams: Investigating Cognitive Demands, Skills, and Teamwork
This PhD research adopts a Naturalistic Decision Making (NDM) approach to investigate the key cognitive demands, skills, and the optimal training frameworks to use with multi-agency emergency response teams (fire, police, and ambulance). The NDM literature has explored the identification or training of cognitive skills in a variety of domains, including: healthcare, aviation, and military (Gore & McAndrew, 2009). While the literature and applied practice supports the importance of training cognitive skills in naturalistic settings, a gap in the research exists in examining training with multi-agency emergency response teams (Flin et al., 2008; Power, 2018). To access expert cognition by employing cognitive task analysis techniques to identify the factors that enable expert decision-making under high-pressure conditions in multi-agency team settings. A secondary aim is to utilise this knowledge to inform training programmes and enhance training outcomes, thereby accelerating skill acquisition to support the development of less experienced professionals in these roles. This research is planned to be completed over three phases utilising a range of methods to investigate the proposed research questions, with an emphasis on addressing a methodological gap within the literature by utilising a cognitive task analysis (CTA) technique. Expected Impact: This research impacts the literature and applied practice by informing the cognitive demands, skills, and training methods critical for multi-agency team optimal functioning and performance. More broadly, given the nature of these teams and the professional domain, there is the potential positive impact on enhancing effective response to major incidents in our society.
A quiet hut at a busy conference: experiencing postgraduate research as a temporary ‘safe space’ in everyday academic uncertainties
Postgraduate students face many existential challenges, particularly in competitive UK Higher Education and as pressures for success in the sector continuously rise. This proposal is a tiny (house) contribution to open a novel space for student utopia. It is not about training students in individual resilience or helping them to rescript ‘failure’ into success. The aim of this space is not to address the mental health issues of individual students and other solitary members of the research community. Instead, we reflect on our own shaky position in a fragile system. Off the records of self-optimisation audits for individual excellence, sitting together in a wooden hut is then about breathing a different air on campus. The Welcome Hut is open during the conference afternoons as a drop-in and provides a calm environment beyond cognitive overstimulation. Rather than learning the technicities of bingepaneling (a skill that would certainly help for CVs in the face of excessive demands on Early Career Researchers), you are invited to share your arts & crafts of collaborative utopia. The skills in collective daydreaming that you gain will allow to take a step away from conventional academia that asks to ‘publish or perish’. We will imagine narratives of research as sanctuary, which potentially take us beyond the exhausted/exhausting academia we currently dwell in.
Exploring Power Dynamics in the Construction of Childhoods within Nursery Settings
Two main concerns, the growing institutionalisation of childhood and decreasing free play opportunities are starting points for this study. They can be seen as school’s ‘pivotal role in the construction of a new kind of childhood’ (Oswell, 2013, p.116) and as a way of disciplining of children into ‘docile subjects’ (Oswell, 2013) through childcare which are controlled and supervised by adults. To explore the meanings of being a child in the nursery, the concepts of ‘power’ and ‘agency’ are used. Power from Foucauldian perspective is accepted as something exercised; relational; and the possibility of resistance. Agency as both doing things and resisting, is questioned to explore the children’s experiences and their negotiations within the power relations that can both serve as constraining and supportive by adopting ethnography within everyday contexts of nurseries. While thinking play and play time as free, it might be suggested that children can do their own choices however children’s opportunities for play are always limited and controlled within educational settings. Therefore, play as political and negotiated terrain will be used as a context to look at whose interests, power and agency are exercised or excluded in nurseries. By recognizing the existence of inequalities and power relations in educational institutions and adopting critical stance in developing research agenda, the study opens up a space to create education equity; enable negotiating new ways of knowing and the sharing of power; critically look at the adult-child relations and give opportunities for children to see their voices really do count.
Adapting Mindfulness-Based Programmes to the Workplace: An exploratory Case Study
Mindfulness meditation is often portrayed by popular media as providing wellbeing and performance benefits. Whilst there is strong evidence supporting the 8-week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) programme in clinical settings, the evidence supporting programmes in other settings is nascent. Programmes are often adapted in content, duration and delivery, thus risking the omission of core components and compromising programme efficacy (Crane et al., 2018). There is a need to tailor Mindfulness-Based programmes (MBPs) to specific audiences using novel approaches, and to explore the mechanisms and efficacy of such approaches. Using a case study approach, this project explores the development of a workplace MBP which meets the needs of the organisation, and is adapted to the working population, whilst retaining the integrity of the MBSR programme. The project will add to the MBP literature on how to adapt an MBP to a specific audience. Whilst findings will not be generalisable, the project will provide practical insights to enable mindfulness teachers. More broadly, tailoring programmes could bring the benefits of mindfulness more effectively to more sectors (e.g., sport, education, workplace, military), thus positively impacting the wellbeing and performance of our society.
Language use in the Scottish modern language classroom: Teacher and pupil attitudes, beliefs and perceptions
Modern language teachers in Anglophone contexts face a unique problem in motivating their pupils to learn languages other than English given its global predominance. In an effort to better cultivate a multilingual society, the Scottish government is currently rolling out the 1+2 initiative, which guarantees pupils the opportunity to learn two modern languages in addition to their mother tongue. Unlike other Anglophone contexts where the use of maximal target language is often policy driven, Scottish teachers are at liberty to decide how much target language to use in the classroom. There are few studies to date that explore attitudes toward language use in the Scottish language classroom, let alone pupil attitudes. As 1+2 is expected to fully implement across Scotland by 2021, an understanding of the factors influencing pupil perceptions of the language learning experience will become increasingly important in promoting multilingualism. This poster will present on an exploratory PhD case study that conducts questionnaires and interviews with teachers and pupils of Spanish, French, German and/or Italian in Scottish secondary schools. Additionally, the use of metaphors and a cartoon storyboard-drawing task offer a creative alternative in seeking to better understand wider social and affective dimensions influencing pupils’ thinking.
Linguistic Variation and Editor Intervention in Peer Reviewed Articles
Ezra James Alexander
This project aims to shed light on linguistic variation in peer-reviewed biochemistry, genetics and cell biology articles, and examine the subsequent role of journal editors as gatekeepers of academic language. Previous research highlights evidence that linguistic variations have started to emerge in the published language of natural science oriented fields, indicating the need for clarity concerning the role of journal editors in shaping published texts and language acceptable for publication. Hence, utilizing a combination of corpus-driven and corpus-based methods, the study will analyze lexicogrammatical and pragmalinguistic variation in peer-reviewed articles and investigate through interviews the role of journal editors in forming an acceptable standard for published language. Two corpora have been compiled: one high tier, which consists of articles from higher ranked journals, and one low tier, which consists of articles from lower ranked journals. A keyword analysis identified a variety of words and phrases that differ between the two corpora. Contrastive language analysis was carried out on these findings, revealing statistically significant differences in the use of modal verbs, linking verbs, relative pronouns and related lexical bundles. The interviews with journal editors will provide insights into editor intervention with regard to the linguistic variation found during the corpus analysis. These findings should contribute to an understanding of how communication in published academic English could be changing, where different roles (editors/researchers) combine with different L1 backgrounds to create a dynamic and internationally oriented environment, as well as document how the conception of acceptable language for publication can vary within a single field.
Teachers of Action: A Narrative Study into the Teacher Identity Constructions of Turkish EFL Teachers Engaging in Voluntarily Activities
The study aims to explore the nature of the professional and personal identities of Turkish EFL (English as a Foreign Language) teachers who engage in volunteering activities outside their school hours. While there are already limited studies on the identities of international teachers of English, this study, not just enriches the existing literature around the topic but also brings a unique perspective with an attempt to identify the similarities and differences between teacher volunteering and teacher activism. To understand their extra volunteering practices from a teacher identity perspective, I conducted two in-depth interviews with five Turkish teachers of English that I analysed narratively. Teachers are from all over Turkey and their volunteering practices vary from conducting Erasmus projects to working in an orphanage and running a football club in a small community. Teacher of action is a concept that came out of data as some of the participants did not want to be called activist teachers, although what they do in practice could well be defined as an activist endeavour. Teachers also found it motivating for their everyday teaching to do extra volunteering, although it may seem vice versa from an outsider perspective.