Educational Structures in Context: At the Interfaces of Higher Education


Educational Structures in Context: At the Interfaces of Higher Education


Edited by Iva Apostolova and Tom Claes

Year: 2010

Format: eBook


The present eBook The Idea of Education is intended as a historical snapshot of the conference The Idea of Education 5 that took place in Budapest in May 2008. The fifth edition of the conference on the idea of education, continued the tradition of critical debate and reflection on Higher Education that started in 2002. Among the topics covered both in the presentations and the discussion panels, were the relation between a Doctoral Degree and career opportunities, self-marketing among university applicants, the impact of globalisation on Higher Education in different developed and developing countries, and questioning the mission of Higher Education, and the role of the teacher in it.

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The eleven chapters in this volume are accurate representations of the chapters presented at the conference in Budapest. The editors have grouped the chapters into three sections, each dealing with more general or more specific issues pertaining to education. The first section introduces chapters that deal with general questions about the existing structures of formal academic education. While the authors adopt a critical approach to the existing structures of formal Higher Education, they seem to agree that the primary role of university in creating and organising the social life, (helped by the personal example and experience of the teacher), not only should not be ignored, but should be reinforced to protect universities against the reigning opportunism, managerialism, and bureaucracy that seem to have been affecting, in various degrees, all modern structures.

The second section of the volume focuses on more specific issues concerning Higher Education in different national contexts. While the challenges that Higher Education faces in Canada are different than the challenges it faces in Pakistan or Turkey, the authors agree on one thing: Higher Education should promote the values of democracy and tolerance, prepare students not only for the labour market but also for active citizenship. Historically, universities have been hubs of creativity. In the context of globalisation where national and cultural boundaries are questioned, universities should resume (or keep) their role of facilitators of social change. This entails the need for Higher Education to remain an autonomous social institution and be available to all social groups, including, and especially, the ones whose access to higher education have been traditionally restricted.

The third section focuses on the impact of technology, and more specifically, the Internet, on Higher Education. The issues the authors tackle range from the use of Web 2.0 technology to the use of mobile phones and different online platforms during lectures. Despite the very different issues and goals that the authors see with regard to the use of technology in the classroom, they argue along the same lines: the fast access to detailed and voluminous information, and the effective structuring of this information that technology offers, should be incorporated as a useful tool in any classroom, to help the lecturer deliver the material successfully and remain connected to the students (and successfully resolve specific problems that students might face with the course material).

Iva Apostolova and Tom Claes

PART I: Questioning the Formal Structures of Higher Education

Why Should We Go to School?
Iva Apostolova

Developing a New Curriculum: Chartered Street or Valley Wild?
Karen Gomoluch and Gill Whittaker

Questioning The Idea of the University
Sanja Petkovska

Teachers’ Knowledge and Teacher Education: Some Reflections
Maria Leonor Borges

Separating Learning and Evaluation
Mark Dobbins

PART II: Higher Education in Specific National Contexts

Higher Education in Canada: New Millennium, New Students, New Directions
Dale Kirby

Developing Active Citizenship: Universities as Agents of Social Change
Sarwet Rasul

The Nature of Learning Theories and their Effects on Distance Education Practices in Turkey
Serpil Koçdar and Nilgün Özdamar

PART III: The Impact of Technology on Higher Education

Online Teaching with Learning Objects
Bill Tait

User Requirements Analysis for Use of Mobile Phones in Learning and Teaching
Johnnes Arreymbi and Chrisina Draganova

Using a Cognitive Flexibility Hypertext to Develop Reading Comprehension: An Ongoing Case Study with Students with a Media Studies Degree
Maria Isabel Orega and Antonio Moreira

Iva Apostolova is a professor in Philosophy at the University of Ottawa, St. Paul’s University and the Dominican University College in Ottawa, Canada. Department of Philosophy, University of Ottawa, 70 Laurier East Ave., Ottawa, ON, K1S 2N3, Canada.

Tom Claes is Associate Professor of Ethics and Director of Curriculum in the Department of Philosophy and Moral Science at Ghent University, Belgium. He is also a member of the “Center for Ethics and Value Inquiry”. Tom Claes’ current research focuses mainly on contemporary sexualities and on a project of: ‘The Idea of the University.’ For more information on this, see the research sites (‘Themasites’).