Investigating Beliefs about Teaching & Learning, Strengthening Instructional Design

Your Name and Title: Andrea Baer, Instructional Services Librarian

Library, School, or Organization Name: Ingram Library, University of West Georgia

Co-Presenter Name(s): n/a

Area of the World from Which You Will Present: United States

Language in Which You Will Present: English

Target Audience(s): educators across teaching contexts

Short Session Description (one line): In this workshop participants will explore reflective practices that encourage educators to investigate their own beliefs about teaching and learning in order to develop more intentional approaches to teaching and instructional design.

Full Session Description (as long as you would like):

Educators have long recognized the powerful role that students’ prior beliefs play in their learning. A less common but equally important point of discussion is the influence of teachers’ own beliefs about learning on their everyday teaching practices. While educators are usually self-aware of many of their own pedagogical beliefs and how these perspectives influence their engagement with students, other beliefs about learning may sometimes be less recognized and may affect teaching in surprising ways. This holds true for both new and highly experienced teachers. Reflective practices like Stephen Brookfield’s (1995) process of “hunting assumptions” are invitations for educators to uncover their own beliefs, attitudes, or assumptions about learning in order to strengthen their teaching practices.

In this workshop participants will explore reflective practices that encourage educators to investigate their own beliefs about teaching and learning in order to develop more intentional approaches to teaching and the instructional design. Attendees will be introduced to research on the role of students’ and teachers’ beliefs about learning in the learning process, as well as to reflective practices that invite teachers to investigate their own underlying pedagogical beliefs and assumptions As work on conceptual change theory demonstrates (Strike and Posner 1992), such beliefs are shaped not only at the individual level, but also at institutional and structural levels. Most importantly, participants will discuss potential implications of work on this topic for their pedagogical practices, including aspects of instructional design like developing learning outcomes and activities and assessing student learning.

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