Seminar with Mike Prosser

Mood:  a-ok
Now Playing: The Return of The King (James Galway – The Lord of the Rings)
Topic: Seminars

So, last week for my birthday I had the opportunity of going to the talk by Mike Prosser. John told me to stick around and he would have given me and introduction to him, so I did, unfortunately, John was called away for a couple of minutes (and since they were going for lunch soon after), I made myself known to him and told him about my research into looking at disciplines using the Intentions and Beliefs Approaches to Teaching – I think he was a bit flustered since at first I don’t think he caught on what I was saying (or I probably didn’t explain it too well) – well, he kept repeating there were many avenues to explore with the ATI (his he meant) as yet. He did say he looked forward to seeing me in some future conference.

Well, he presented two sessions: the first was on the understanding and improving student learning experiences which I was not too keen on – but the point of that according to him (and since he was working with Higher Education Academy (HEA)- the point of them too)was to enhance their theoretical and or conceptual understanding of teaching and learning, and the scholarship of teaching and learning. They did some work using the survey research students experience questionnaire which I think may be similar to the CEQ but instead geared for research students. He indicated that paper will soon be coming out in the Instruction Science Journal.

He also explained that in their recent research they found that courses that were teacher focussed tended to have teacher-type activities or student-activities where the teacher imposed their ideas into the student’s activity. Whilst on student-focussed courses there was student activities.

He also did work on student learning in disciplines. I did ask if they were doing any work in the comparison of students across disciplines. But indicated that there was no work on that presently. However, his research has concentrated on first year classes unlike mine which is a mixture of classes – so not sure if that could influence the data. Also, he was looking at biochemistry – so my question to him was whether health students and biology students approach learning to biochemistry differently (it seems to be work parallel to my linear programming so was checking that hypothesis out).

He did share with us some anecdotes about his house in Australia being broken in and his wife still being back there (and that perhaps may the reason for his frazzled appearance) and also the whole moving experience to the UK (and of course the laments of everyone moving here – how expensive it is if you have a different currency to the pound!)

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