The Missing Link in Promoting Quality Education: Exploring the role of pedagogical design in promoting quality in teaching and learning
ResumoA major premise of this keynote address is that pedagogical design plays an important role in promoting and assuring educational quality. Pedagogical design has to do with approaches to teaching and learning which comprise, how learners interact with the subject matter content, their learning activities, how their learning is assessed, and how feedback is provided to them. Approaches to learning and teaching are informed by our knowledge and understanding of human learning and cognition, of which there are several major strands. These theories of how we learn help us develop models of learning and teaching which we believe are suitable for teaching particular kinds of subject matter, skills or attitudes. Our views and perspectives on learning and cognition have been changing over time and this has impacted how we approach and conduct our teaching activities. Currently, the popular view is that learning is a constructive process, that learning and teaching is most potent when they are “situated” within a meaningful context, and in the culture and the community within which learners live. This view suggests that learning is a process of developing understanding through problem-solving and critical reflection within a meaningful context. This paper discusses and demonstrates how this view and its attendant principles have been implemented in the Master of Arts in Teacher Education (International) Program ( MATE–I) currently on offer in the distance education mode at the Open University of Sri Lanka. The MATE–I program utilizes a situated cognitive approach to learning and teaching called “Scenario-Based Learning”.
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