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Interactional Ethnography and the Learning Sciences

Speaker

Associate Professor Susan Bridges

Dr Susan Bridges is an Associate Professor and Assistant Dean (Curriculum Innovation) with the Faculty of Education and the Centre for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning at The University of Hong Kong (HKU). She has been an educator in both mainstream and higher education for over 30 years. Her work in higher education focuses on curriculum and staff development, including e-learning initiatives, to enhance student learning outcomes. This resulted in a 2012 HKU Outstanding Teaching Award (Team) for work on blended learning in Dentistry. Her research interests are interactional and ethnographic, exploring the ‘how’ of effective pedagogy and professional communication. She has published on problem-based learning (PBL) in Medical Education and the 2014 Cambridge Handbook of Learning Sciences (2nd Ed) and currently has nationally funded research grants examining PBL and educational technologies as well as health communication. Her most recent co-edited book Educational Technologies in Medical and Health Sciences Education follows the successful 2012 volume Problem-Based Learning in Clinical Education: The Next Generation which has recorded over 10,600 downloads to date.

Abstract

This presentation examines the potential of new methodologies and analytic tools for the Learning Sciences in moving forward with its theoretical and empirical work, specifically Interactional Ethnography (IE) which takes its roots from ethnography, interactional sociolinguistics, ethnomethodology and discourse analysis in education. In this presentation, I will examine the confluences between Interactional Ethnography (IE) and the Learning Sciences movement by examining similarities between the origins and emerging constructs foundational to both. In particular, I will focus on two shared interests, interdisciplinary and systemic research, and will explore how these are manifest in our ongoing HKSAR-funded Interactional Ethnography which is examining the role of educational technologies in problem-based health sciences curricula. By doing so, I will explore how the collaborative theoretical and empirical work between the University of Hong Kong (S. Bridges et al.), The University of California (J. Green, Director, Center for Education Research on Literacy & Inquiry in Networking Communities) and Indiana University (C. Hmelo-Silver, Barbara B. Jacobs Chair of Education and Technology and Professor of Learning Sciences) is bringing IE into new fields of investigation aligned to core constructs in the Learning Sciences.

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