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Analysing vocational knowing with help of learning studies
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Education.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0764-5728
2014 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The issue of this presentation is to discuss how learning study can function as a tool for expanding a didactical understanding of theoretical and practical aspects of knowing. By tradition much vocational knowing is described and perceived in dichotomised terms as practical or theoretical. Taking an activity theoretical perspective (CHAT) this type of dichotomies is problematic since knowledge is seen as developed and used in a specific activity or practice. Thus, knowing must be regarded as complex, multi facetted (multi-voiced) and situational where, theoretical aspects are built into artefacts as professional language, models, and of course physical tools ect. Knowing how to use, value and assess (and develop) the practice-specific artefacts is demanding both a “theoretical” and “practical” knowing. In this presentation this issues will be discussed in relation to an example from a learning study in home economics where students knowing of how to prepare a cold emulsion (exemplified as mayonnaise) where focused.

Learning study is a teacher led model developed to improve teaching practices in a way that enhances students learning. The model is interventionist– aiming to develop teaching and it is iterative – consisting of repeated analysis, design, evaluation and revisions of a lesson. Further, the model has a special focus on how the content is treated by teachers and students in the on-going classroom interactions, how tools are used and what subject specific content is made available for the students. The core of a learning study is the so-called ‘object of learning’ (OL). The object of learning needs to be identified and analysed both in relation to the historically and culturally developed knowing (in this case cold emulsions) and students’ actual understanding of the targeted knowledge. This identification and analysis is led by questions as: what in the targeted knowing is difficult for the students to understand and master? What do students understand and perhaps misunderstand? What knowing is built into the tools and rules? What do a knowledgeable person master and how?

If the research and development is focusing the meaning of knowing and the relation between practical and theoretical aspects of knowing the identification and analysis of an OL can help teachers and researchers to develop subject specific didactical knowledge. In order to understand the knowing embedded in i.e. making a cold emulsion the students simultaneously need to master both the manual tools as well as the theoretical principles of a cold emulsion.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014.
Keyword [en]
Learning study
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Didactics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-114298OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-114298DiVA: diva2:790974
Conference
Vocational Education & Training Emerging Issues? Voices from Research III International Conference & Research Workshop Stockholm, Sweden, May 12‐13, 2014
Available from: 2015-02-26 Created: 2015-02-26 Last updated: 2017-03-22

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