Progress in Education. Volume 55

Roberta V. Nata (Editor)

Series: Progress in Education
BISAC: EDU000000

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Progress in Education. Volume 55 opens with an examination of current issues in education that may impede progress in the field. A variety of external threats are analyzed, including k-12 and university funding and ideological threats in the form of political forces that may attempt to dictate k-12 curriculum.

The research underpinning the following chapter is derived from the authors’ personal involvement as teacher-educators in leading a Collaborative Action Research project in a New Zealand suburban Christian school. The overarching research question was, “How might the Collaborative Action Research process affect teachers’ professional practice and student learning?”

The authors explore the concept of optimal best practice situated within the context of secondary school mathematics learning. In particular, they provide a complex methodological conceptualization for the understanding of optimal best practice, which takes into account cognitive load imposition.

As new computer and web-based tools present an opportunity to motivate students and improve educational guidance services, this collection describes an online guidance project for secondary school students. The results of this project seem promising for improving the quality of guidance and students’ decision-making processes regarding their academic futures.

The relationship between individuals’ possession of cultural capital and their musical preferences has been extensively examined in Western society; however, little attention has been given to it in contemporary Chinese contexts. As such, the next study focuses on junior secondary school students’ preferred musical listening styles, and their perception of how their cultural capital has shaped their musical preferences in contemporary Hong Kong society.

Many contemporary classrooms are currently designed to be flexible and open. Such designs reflect those that were trialed in classrooms during the mid-1960s to the late 70s when the open plan classroom became popular. The authors explore this initial open plan movement in the 60s and 70s, investigating some of the changes that influence classrooms today.

Following this, the authors illustrate how element interactivity gives rise to different types of cognitive load (intrinsic, extraneous, and germane) when middle school students solve a complex science problem. Analyzing learning tasks in terms of element interactivity assesses their suitability for targeted students, thus lowering the chances of cognitive overload.

The final chapter is directed at scholars thinking of undertaking a research project, particularly at post-graduate level, and discusses the concepts of objectivity and subjectivity in educational research. The authors suggest that true objectivity is challenging due to researchers’ familiarity with the subject matter, however research may still be valid providing researchers accept and acknowledge that this plays its part in their interpretation of the findings.

Preface

Chapter 1. Addressing the Crisis in Education: External Threats, Embracing Cognitive Science, and the Need for a More Engaged Citizenry
(Joshua Cuevas, PhD, University of North Georgia, Dahlonega, Georgia, US)

Chapter 2. Improving Teaching Practice and Student Learning through Collaborative Action Research: A Case Study of an Effective Partnership Programme Involving Teacher-Educators and Four Middle School Teachers
(Alaster R. Gibson, PhD, and Janette M. Blake, Bethlehem Tertiary Institute (BTI), Tauranga, New Zealand)

Chapter 3. Best Practice in Mathematics Learning: A Theoretical-Conceptual Discussion for Consideration
(Bing H. Ngu, Huy P. Phan, Hui-Wen Wang, Jen-Hwa Shih, Sheng-Ying Shi and Ruey-Yih Lin, University of New England, Armidale, Australia, and others)

Chapter 4. Virtual Educational Guidance Tools for Preventing University Drop-Out
(Ana B. Bernardo, Antonio Cervero, Constanza López, María Esteban and Ellián Tuero, Department of Psychology, University of Oviedo, Spain)

Chapter 5. Influences of Cultural Capital on Junior Secondary School Students’ Musical Preferences in Hong Kong, China
(Siu-Hang, Kong, PhD, Department of Music, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong, China)

Chapter 6. Digitally Enhanced Spaces- A New Innovation?
(Damian Maher, Senior Lecturer, School of Education, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, University of Technology Sydney, Ultimo, Australia)

Chapter 7. Element Interactivity as a Construct for the Analysis of Science Problem-Solving Processes
(Munirah Shaik Kadir, Alexander Seeshing Yeung and Anne Forbes, Australian Catholic University, Australia, and others)

Chapter 8. Objectivity and Subjectivity in Research
(Martin Spurin, EdD and Paul Stansbie, PhD, University College Birmingham, Birmingham, England, and others)

Index

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