Creating connections in teaching and learning

Abawi, Lindy ORCID: and Conway, Joan M. ORCID: and Henderson, Robyn ORCID:, eds. (2011) Creating connections in teaching and learning. Research on Teaching and Learning. Information Age Publishing, Charlotte, NC, United States. ISBN 978-1-61735-551-6


This book, Creating connections in teaching and learning, focuses on a core aspect of the work of educators, regardless of the context within which they teach. Connections are central to learning and that is one of the reasons why this book is important. If educators were asked how connections were relevant and important to their teaching and to their students' learning, we would probably be given a plethora of answers. Some might focus on the connections between new learning and prior knowledge; others might talk about the importance of social relationships between teachers and learners;
others might highlight the links between theory and practice. Chances are that the list would be long and varied.

These ideas and many more have been taken up by the contributing authors. The authors represent a diverse group-beginning researchers including early career personnel and postgraduate students, novice writers, experienced researchers, and expert writers. Despite their diverse backgrounds, all the authors had some connections with a university and were working on research projects that were related to the scholarship of teaching and learning. Like most educators, the contributing authors take their work as teachers seriously, and the opportunity to create more formal connections between teaching and research was a useful way of formalizing the reflecting and thinking that 'goes with the job' of being an educator.

The book explores a wide range of connections. We know that connections can encompass making links, crossing divides, forming relationships, building frameworks, and generating new knowledge. And it is this multiplicity that makes the topic of this book so interesting. In various ways, the authors explore the cognitive, cultural, social, emotional, and physical aspects. of understanding, meaning-making, motivating, acting, researching, and evaluating, as they examine teaching and learning from the perspective of their own experiences. 111eir explorations highlight the linkages, partnerships, and networks that connect learners, educators, organizations, and communities.

Collectively, the chapters offer a wide range of educational problems, ponderings, and possibilities for transformative practices. Individually, the chapters offer insights into specific issues that relate to particular contexts, including school education, higher education, and the more recent digital or virtual worlds that are playing such an important role in education today. Many of the chapters are personal, highlighting authors' experiences, their attempts to resolve problems, or their reflections on practice. Many chapters attempt to get at the 'guts' of a problem, to consider how things might be done differently, and to find a way forward in order to enhance teaching and learning.

The development of the book has been a collaborative one, with collaborations among ourselves as editors, and with and between the contributing authors. Regardless of the authors' backgrounds, however, the chapters take what is often the daily work of educators and present it in a new light. Connections are made between research and teaching, between theory and practice, and between old and new theories. Overall, the book takes a futures orientation, suggesting some possibilities for new ways of working and thinking.

The book is aimed at an academic and professional audience that is interested in the multiple ways that education can help to create connections. Because of its focus on research, on the scholarship of teaching and learning, and on connections in varied educational contexts and sectors, the book will have wide appeal. Postgraduate students will find the presentation of different research paradigms useful in formulating and clarifying their own approaches. It will also be of interest to those who want to know how connections might be forged between and among learners, educators, organizations, and communities.

The authors do not set out to provide answers for every problem in every context. What they do, however, is to open up the possibilities for transformation. They highlight their lived experiences, connect personal experiences
to professional reflections, and layout their thinking so that readers can make connections of their own. We hope that readers will engage with the ideas in this book and that they will enjoy making those connections.

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Item Type: Book (Commonwealth Reporting Category A)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to published version due to publisher copyright policy.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Education (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Education (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Date Deposited: 18 Jan 2012 06:25
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2022 03:16
Uncontrolled Keywords: connections; teaching; learning; education
Fields of Research (2008): 16 Studies in Human Society > 1608 Sociology > 160809 Sociology of Education
13 Education > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130202 Curriculum and Pedagogy Theory and Development
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130309 Learning Sciences
Fields of Research (2020): 39 EDUCATION > 3902 Education policy, sociology and philosophy > 390203 Sociology of education
39 EDUCATION > 3901 Curriculum and pedagogy > 390102 Curriculum and pedagogy theory and development
39 EDUCATION > 3904 Specialist studies in education > 390409 Learning sciences
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970113 Expanding Knowledge in Education

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