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Wednesday, June 18 • 2:30pm - 3:20pm
CON2.10 – The Road Less Traveled? Pathways from Passivity to Agency in Student Learning (Room A333)

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How might we take the idea of engaging students beyond the traditional?  Let’s start with the concepts of student-centered, social, inquiry-based learning and endeavor to engage students more deeply.  Let’s build upon the idea of involving students in feedback on teaching, in learning communities, and as student representatives on curriculum committees. Is it possible to go further?  Can we consider for a moment the possibility of students as co-creators of university courses? 

In fact, Bovil (2013) reviews the recent calls for students as co-creators of curricula and cites from the literature many examples of students engaged as co-creators of university curriculum in the UK. She advocates for the role of educational developers to help influence change and garner support of co-created curriculum approaches. 

As Canadian educational developers, we felt particularly well-situated to propose this idea within the Faculty of Science, a faculty with whom we have developed strong connections.  We developed an Applied Curriculum Design course for third and fourth year students from across the faculty.  The course was rather unique in that students did not just learn about curriculum or course design; they actually developed a series of learning modules for first year students. These modules, which are embedded into a new first year science course, aim to enable incoming science students to develop and practice foundational scientific research skills, adjust more easily to university, and become aware of and reflect upon the many possible programs and career paths that science has to offer.  Through teaching this Applied Curriculum Design course, we found ourselves amazed by what the students developed.  As the course progressed, we found ourselves transforming into learners as we enabled our students to become the teachers. 

Let’s discus the idea of engaging students as co-creators of curriculum together. We will contribute our experiences in enabling students to co-create a first year science and compare these to some of the examples gleaned from the literature.  Perhaps together we can develop some principles and guidelines that can enable others to transform students into teachers and teachers into learners.

Wednesday June 18, 2014 2:30pm - 3:20pm EDT
A334 McArthur Hall

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