Threshold concepts and ‘troublesome’ students: The uneasy application of threshold concepts to marginalised students

Davis, Charmaine ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2194-2307 and Green, Jonathan H. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1468-1970 (2020) Threshold concepts and ‘troublesome’ students: The uneasy application of threshold concepts to marginalised students. Teaching in Higher Education. ISSN 1356-2517


Abstract

For efficient and effective learning, intensive-mode programs have increasingly focused on threshold concepts – transformative, often- troublesome, moments in learning that represent the development of key knowledge. Threshold concept theory has support in the context of content-based, disciplinary domains, but questions remain about its applicability to curricula that have broader aims. This study investigated the ‘fit’ of threshold concept theory to participants, many of them previously marginalized, in an intensive Widening Participation (WP) program at a regional university in Australia. Thematic analysis of data from focus groups, comprised of students and teachers respectively, revealed that participants perceived not only the development of key conceptual knowledge as integral to learning, but that they also recognized that acculturation, metacognition, and affective attributes were important for success. This finding suggests that a narrow focus on academic knowledge – (both content- and skills-related) – is inadequate in programs that aim to include previously marginalized students in higher education.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - USQ College (8 Jun 2020 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - USQ College (8 Jun 2020 -)
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2020 03:46
Last Modified: 14 Sep 2020 02:40
Uncontrolled Keywords: Widening participation; higher education; curriculum and instruction; threshold concepts
Fields of Research (2008): 13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130103 Higher Education
13 Education > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130202 Curriculum and Pedagogy Theory and Development
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9301 Learner and Learning > 930103 Learner Development
C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9303 Curriculum > 930302 Syllabus and Curriculum Development
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1080/13562517.2020.1799972
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/39144

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