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Plausible Answers to Higher Education's Willingness to Accept Students' Voice

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University of Wisconsin, Parkside
Latest update:October 31, 1998
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Higher Education's Willingness to Accept Students' Voice

Answers by jeanne

Answer the following questions in 25 words or less. Readings for the issues can be found on the specified pages.

  1. What role did community play in the minicourse based on Women's Ways of Knowing? (At. p. 36)

    The minicourses designed interactive workshops that focussed on creating a community of learners, so that freshmen were not left on their own, but could, through the minicourses, become part of a "small community of learners who could share their stories." Community provides a sense of belonging, which is an important factor in adjusting to any new climate, such as the college campus. On our campus the Older Adult Center provides some of that community atmosphere. A community of learners helps to establish a climate of learning (Pullias) in which learning is intrinsic, or its own reward.

  2. What happened when the minicourses were translated into core curriculum? (At p.37)

    "When a faculty committee reworked the minicourse materials to incorporate them into year-long core courses, they erased components that emphasized students' shared dialogues, reflection on themselves as knowers, and gaining a voice. Instead, sole focus on content (albeit interdisciplinary) was reinstituted., a reminder of how difficult it is to grasp and implement ideas from a new paradigm in a setting where traditional views about teaching and learning receive unquestioning support." It is the understanding of self as a knower, a community of learners in whiich to investigate and nurture that self, that permits intrinsic motivation for learning to flourish. Motivating Students Without Grades (Alfie Kohn).

  3. On pp. 39-41 Stanton explains developmental learning, in which students are encouraged to believe in their capacity to recognize discrepancies and contradictions, incorporate them into the various frameworks of knowledge, and "actively construct their own development." (p.41) Describe (briefly) developmental learning experiences you have had.

    Just to help you think in this direction, try agreeing or disagreeing with the following: Then pick one or a few to explain what this means to you as a knower.

    1. I have met and talked to people I might not otherwise have known.
    2. I have listened in good faith to people who are "not like me." (Reference: Rokeach, Milton. The Open and Closed Mind. Says we tend to like people we believe to be like ourselves.)
    3. I have encountered contradictions.
    4. I have found a place where I can be heard.
    5. I have found a community of learners.
    6. I have learned a new skill.
    7. I have lost my fear of thring at least one new thing.
    8. I have learned more about how I know.
    9. I have learned more about how others know.


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