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  • 1.
    Aronsson, Lena
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Child and Youth Studies.
    Collaborations, reciprocity, and shared matter of concern: Educational Neuroscience research methodology in Early Childhood practices2017Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Since the millennium, the emergent discipline of Educational Neuroscience has grown rapidly. This transdiscipline aims to bridge the gap between the neurosciences and educational practices, not only to let the neurosciences inform educational practices but also for educational practices to provide new relevant questions for the neurosciences (Fischer et al, 2007). The joint aim is to improve educational practices for future generations. As a researcher in Early Childhood Education with an interest in how knowledge practices are material-discursively produced, I was triggered to do something about this lack of knowledge. What would emerge if brain research became part of the literacy theories and practices of Swedish preschool teachers? Would it be possible to enact a reciprocal and collaborative research methodology together with the practitioners, based on a joint matter of concern? I felt an urge to explore this and in this presentation, I will highlight some methodological implications in this project.

    Researching a problem that ultimately concerns the possibilities, difficulties and problems which emerge in the encounters of two different practices – scientific research practices and educational practices – demands a methodology that engages in the practice of research practices and the problem of how to overcome divisions between humanities, social science and natural sciences (Sismondo, 2004) Hence, the research questions concern how the different disciplines’ power production is negotiated and re-negotiated in the encounter, and what the consequences are for teachers constituted and re-constituted beliefs, theories and practices (Callard & Fitzgerald, 2015). Questions on how this encounter is received, resisted, and in what ways this kind of knowing transforms meaning-making and practices concerning the literacy work performed was an urgent issue in the participating preschools as well. Hence, based on shared matters of concern of the researcher and the participants is a methodology needed that is characterized by reciprocity and collaboration.

  • 2.
    Aronsson, Lena
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Child and Youth Studies.
    Collaborative Cartography Mapping of the Encounter between Neuroscience and Preschool Practices2018In: European Congress of Qualitative Inquiry: Second Edition - Nomadic Inquiry: Abstracts, 2018, p. 68-68Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This presentation takes its starting point in curiosity among preschool teachers and staff in a municipality outside Stockholm, about what the neurosciences might have to offer their practices of literacy education.  Deriving from an invitation from practitioners to researchers, a project was designed based on a shared agreement on a ‘joint matter of concern’ (Stengers, 2008, Lenz Taguchi, 2017). The agreement was to explore what the encounter with neuroscientific knowledge might do (or not) to everyday practices, and what possible beneficial effects this might have.

    The study was organized in periods when the researcher was alternately participating in everyday preschool practices and in staff meetings. Documentations of children´s activities, made by the teachers and the researcher, were discussed and reflected upon during the staff meetings, together with excerpts from neuroscientific research. Major lines of articulation, converging around a core problem concerning the didactic conflicts between enhancing learning processes in the group and individual children respectively, were collaboratively constructed and put on the ‘map’. These were then actively put to play to be disrupted and deterritorialized, making ways for new diverging lines and potential reconfigured forms of literacy practices.

    These encounters between neuroscience and preschool practices were performed as collaborative cartography mapping exercises, inspired by Deleuze and Guattari. When enacting these exercises during staff meetings, the dominating lines of articulation that seemed to inform the practices as well as the research excerpts were brought to the fore to creatively experiment with.

    For example, the previously common hesitation towards psychology could be reconfigured when encountering neuroscientific findings of children’s reoccurring cycles of learning and development as complex and unpredictable patterns (Fischer, 2011). Importantly, the rupturing and reconfigurations was different for different teachers, depending on what theories that was taught when they were educated. Another example of a deterritorialization with theoretical as well as didactic implications was how neuroscientific research on brain plasticity constituted a diverging line from the classic and troubling nature-nurture binary. The weary question about the extent to which genetic disposition, or the nurturing social circumstances, play the more significant role than the other, could eventually be replaced with discussing how nature-nurture might rather be intrinsically entangled and co-constituted.

    The collaborative cartography mapping performed in this study shows that it is possible to reconfigure dominant lines of thinking in new productive and empowering ways together with preschool staff. This methodology is essentially about materializing theories of science and learning in a way that is situated and closely connected to the practices. Moreover, it also makes possible a practice of extending the didactic repertoire, contrary to having to choose the ‘better’ epistemology and method for teaching.

  • 3.
    Aronsson, Lena
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Child and Youth Studies.
    Min sjukdom är fler än en, men färre än många: Att följa begreppet multipla verkligheter genom olika praktiker som gör och uppför sjukdom2016In: Tidskrift för Genusvetenskap, ISSN 1654-5443, E-ISSN 2001-1377, Vol. 37, no 3, p. 115-126Article in journal (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    What is a disease? Can we name it in a coherent way, precisely defined and is it only one? Or is the disease as many as those who are ill, or all of the practices where it appears? A few years ago I was diagnosed with autoimmune hepatitis, which could be a rather serious illness. I experienced bodily changes, had alarming liver values and got side effects from medication, but - ill? To handle the discrepancy, I tried to keep apart "having a serious illness" and "being sick".

    Drawing on Mol's concept Multiple Realities I describe how the disease is performed in various practices and my attempts to become comprehensible when coordinating these practices. At the clinic, in the laboratory, in treatment and in my body the disease is enacted as simultaneous versions. It is not the same disease although it has the same name. One version is available as numerical values in a diagram, in another as questions from a doctor to a patient or as text on a web page. The bodily version is almost invisible to me, but is related to gender, class and other categorizations - that affect relationships and interpretations in all practices. The different versions of the disease consists of human and non-human actors; not just me and the doctor but also tablets, conversations, syringes, computers, edema and compression stockings, Thus, reality does not exist in advance.

    With my disease as an example I discuss what multiple versions of reality can offer beyond what multiple perspectives on the same reality can. Moving away from structures and discursive perspectives to reality as multiple enacted versions, there will be less importance in agreeing on understanding or interpretation. Instead we focus on coordinating, informing and intervening. 

  • 4.
    Aronsson, Lena
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Child and Youth Studies.
    Lenz Taguchi, Hillevi
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Child and Youth Studies.
    Mapping a Collaborative Cartography of the Encounters between the Neurosciences and Early Childhood Education Practices2018In: Discourse. Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, ISSN 0159-6306, E-ISSN 1469-3739, Vol. 39, no 2, p. 242-257Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper takes its starting point in a shared problem of concern, formulated in terms of what might be produced – or not – as effects of encounters between neuroscientific research and preschool practices. The aim is to show what emerged in collaborative encounters, in what is theorized and practised as Deleuzo–Guattarian-inspired cartography mapping exercises. During regularly scheduled staff ‘reflection meetings’, an invited doctoral student enacted, participated, and documented these encounters with preschool staff at three preschools in the same area outside Stockholm, Sweden. Two major lines of articulation, converging around a core problem, were collaboratively constructed and put on this ‘map’. These were then actively put to play to be disrupted and deterritorialized, making ways for new diverging lines and potential reconfigured forms of literacy practices.

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