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Evaluating the use of ‘deschooled’ methods in a postgraduate teaching assessment

May, Anthony (2015) Evaluating the use of ‘deschooled’ methods in a postgraduate teaching assessment. Research in Post-Compulsory Education, 20. ISSN 1747-5112

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Abstract

This article critically reflects upon the process of planning and executing a microteaching session undertaken as a unit of assessment on ‘Introduction to Learning, Teaching, and Assessment’ (ILTA), the first module studied for the Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice (PgCap). Personal reflection and feedback from participants and the assessor for the microteaching session are used to assess the success of the session. The assessment utilised methodology suggested in Ivan Illich’s Deschooling Society and the article reflects upon the utility of Illich’s work in contemporary higher education. In Deschooling Society Illich suggests that education should fundamentally change so that ‘convivial’ skills are taught, rather than subjects. The assessment attempted to teach a skill rather than an academic subject. The incongruence of attempting to pass an assessment using methods suggested by a theorist fundamentally opposed to the notion of academic assessment did affect the delivery of the session. However, it is possible to use some methods suggested by Illich. The use of an expert in co-delivery of the session, appearing via online video, was a success. The utilisation of full, one-to-one participation was also a success and the session demonstrated that these methods can be utilised in good teaching practice.

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