Challenges and opportunities in facilitating student engagement and empowerment: perspectives from information systems and education courses at the University of Southern Queensland, Australia

Hafeez-Baig, Abdul (2007) Challenges and opportunities in facilitating student engagement and empowerment: perspectives from information systems and education courses at the University of Southern Queensland, Australia. In: ED-MEDIA 2007: World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and Telecommunications 2007, 25-29 June 2007, Vancouver, Canada.

Abstract

[Abstract]: University qualifications are not only vehicles for training and skills development but also sites for 'value adding' and stimuli for critical reflection and fundamental questioning about the purposes of education. Viewed from this perspective, the facilitation of student engagement and empowerment can be seen as both a right and a responsibility on the part of student and university alike and as a process that benefits themselves as well as the communities to which they belong. Yet such facilitation is neither automatic nor easy. The increased diversity of student populations, the growing emphasis on multiple modes of delivery and differences across and within disciplines combine to create challenges and opportunities in fostering student engagement and empowerment. These challenges and opportunities must be identified, analysed and harnessed if the desired benefits of this engagement and empowerment are to be realised in practice. This paper illustrates this argument by analysing two courses taught by the authors at the University of Southern Queensland, Australia. This interrogation is framed by the concept of interaction being used as an evaluative lens for interrogating the courses’ success in facilitating interaction and hence in promoting student engagement and interaction. The interactive dimension of these two courses encapsulates several of the problems and possibilities facing students and academics who seek to maximise student engagement and empowerment. These problems and possibilities range from the requirements of external certifying authorities and university policies on teaching and learning to discipline-specific approaches to pedagogy and assessment and constraints and options derived from particular delivery modes. The authors argue that, unless these challenges and opportunities are embraced at the course level, broader and deeper student interaction and hence engagement and empowerment will remain unfinished business.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to published version due to publisher copyright policy. P.Danaher not mentioned on paper or citation. HH
Depositing User: Dr Abdul Hafeez-Baig
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Business - School of Information Systems
Date Deposited: 31 Jan 2008 01:29
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 22:57
Uncontrolled Keywords: student engagement; student empowerment; facilitating
Fields of Research (FOR2008): 16 Studies in Human Society > 1608 Sociology > 160809 Sociology of Education
13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130103 Higher Education
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130309 Learning Sciences
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/3817

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