Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Educational Research for Social Change]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/rss.php?pid=2221-407020200001&lang=pt vol. 9 num. SPE lang. pt <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/img/en/fbpelogp.gif http://www.scielo.org.za <![CDATA[<b>Learning How Language is Used in Higher Education to Strategically Marginalise Female, Queer, and Gender Non-Conforming People: An Autoethnographic Account</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2221-40702020000100001&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt In this article, I examine how language informs the systemic and structural manner in which the university space not only marginalises, but also exploits female and gender nonconforming people. I base my account on my experiences in two universities in southern Africa-one in Zimbabwe and the other in South Africa. I aim to show how gender and sexuality borders can be permeated by gaining critical awareness of the working of power and privilege in language that normalises the oppression of one by the other. I do this through a reflective autoethnographic account of the temporal trajectories involved in my experience as an academic of gender and sexuality in universities. I explore the notion of university as a social site where power relations of privilege and marginality can be found to be vivid if not violent. I reflect on my positionality and complicity in exploitative power relations in the university. I also make use of #FeesMustFall diaries as archival data to account for dynamics of exclusion. Theoretically, the article employs the colonial matrix of power to show how coloniality upholds gender and sexuality norms in universities and academics. The purpose of this paper is not to propose strategies for other institutions to use for unlearning pedagogies. Rather, the role of the paper is to document my and others' experiences of how heteropatriarchy manifests in the language used in the lecture room and beyond. In conclusion, the article shows how the author found critical diversity literacy, a learning pedagogy that promotes discomfort, helpful in realising the complicity of language in dominance. <![CDATA[<b>Informal Education and Collective Conscientisation in the #FeesMustFall Movement at Nelson Mandela University</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2221-40702020000100002&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt This paper draws attention to the intellectual life of the #FeesMustFall movement, highlighting how it became a student platform for critical informal education. Freire's concept of conscientisation is utilised to frame the social movement as a learning space of dialogue, critical thinking, knowledge exchange, and formulation of practical political action against higher education injustices. The Nelson Mandela University in South Africa is the site under study where informal education, conscientisation, and active learning occurred in its #FeesMustFall uprisings. Although the #FeesMustFall movement broadly took on a national temperament, each university campus had its own local unique experiences of the agitation. For Nelson Mandela University's microenvironment, the movement took on strong student-worker alliance organising principles and solidarities that yielded promising and continuing material transformations within a short period of time for its low-income university workers and black students. As one of the student leaders of this social movement, I provide here a personal activist experience from that period and space, emphasising the debates, knowledges, learning experiences, and theorising efforts that went with the protests that the #FeesMustFall student-worker alliance movement organised. This study contributes to the decolonisation of university learning spaces by centring alternative "classrooms" provided on the university margins by student social movements as pioneering platforms in the sociopolitical rollout of critical intellectual development and decolonisation of higher education. <![CDATA[<b>The Academentia of ECAs: Navigating Academic Terrain Through Critical Friendships as a Life Jacket</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2221-40702020000100003&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt In this paper, we explore our experiences as early career academics (ECAs) and examine how we forged a collaborative, critical friendship to navigate the challenges that we faced in a South African higher education institution. Our inquiry is guided by the following question: "How are we learning to navigate the organisational academic space through critical friendships?" Grounded in the self-study methodology, we use personal narratives to share our experiences of marginalisation. We use liminal and intersectionality theories as lenses to highlight the formation of our critical friendship. The narratives suggest an organic formation of our critical friendship, which has become a life jacket to enhance ourselves and our practice. Through exploration of our critical friendship, we elaborate on the pleasure, power, and possibilities of collaboration among ECAs that might open up opportunities for professional development leading to social change and academic success. <![CDATA[<b>"Sausage Factory, in and out": Lecturers' Experiences of Assessing in an Era of Massification in a Teacher Education Institution</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2221-40702020000100004&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The massification of higher education in South Africa has been a social justice goal and a significant milestone, given the history of the country. Massification, though, has brought challenges to the higher education sector, one of them being increasing class sizes. In this paper, we explore the experiences of lecturers in conducting assessment in a teacher education institution. We used a case study methodology, and conversations as a method of generating data-with purposive selection of five lecturers from various disciplines as the sample. For the theoretical framework, we drew on the work of two scholars: Kolb (1984) on experiential learning and Pinar's (2004) method of currere. We found that the lecturers understood the purpose of mass higher education, however, the large class sizes have influenced their assessment practices. Beyond the challenges of massification, lecturers invoked their experiences to reflect, learn, and imagine possibilities. There are possibilities for teacher education institutions to enact sustainable assessment and to navigate massification. There is also a need for further research, particularly in teacher education institutions, to theorise large classes in relation to various aspects of teacher education programmes. <![CDATA[<b>Connecting the Classroom to the Business World: Evolvement of a PALAR Journey in a Disciplinary Environment</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2221-40702020000100005&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt There is an increasing demand for skilled graduates who can integrate and apply theoretical knowledge in a real-world context. As a means of enhancing students' employability skills in an exit-level strategic marketing module, two lecturers embarked on a PALAR (participatory action learning action research) journey over a period of three years to design a skills-centred curriculum with corresponding assessments centred upon partnerships between educators, students, and businesses. In order to attain the desired level of practical learning, the partners formed part of the entire assessment process. This included the businesses' (local, national, and international) involvement in the pro cess of identifying real-life problems that served as the foundation of the assessments. Furthermore, the business partners also formed part of the feedback system, empowering the students with practical, industry-specific feedback while, in turn, enhancing the businesses' idea generation process with insight obtained from the students' thinking. During this process, the lecturers redesigned assessments until strategic alignment was attained between the partners' needs and the module's exit-level outcomes. The results reveal that the partnerships between educators, students, and businesses added value to the students' learning experience and enhanced their perceived employability skills. This article thereby contributes to extant literature by explaining how the PALAR approach can be practically applied in the field of business management and marketing. The practical details provided can easily be utilised by educators in the same and other similar fields. Furthermore, an established set of reflective questions and a summary framework have been included, which can aid a lecturer in evolving a PALAR journey. This personal PALAR journey, and the reflection thereon, proved not to be rigid in nature but, instead, fluid and highly adaptable. Each recursive PALAR cycle (plan-act-evaluate/observe-reflect) is needed and cannot be completed without the others. In conclusion, the way one addresses each cycle will be unique to one's teaching style and discipline-specific needs. This article provides educators in similar positions with insight into how they can use a PALAR process when designing their modules and assessments to foster employable graduates. <![CDATA[<b>The Rise of the Executive Dean and the Slide into Managerialism</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2221-40702020000100006&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt Universities have long been characterised by hierarchical and paternalistic management structures and institutional cultures. Change is therefore to be welcomed but, in contexts where social change is urgently needed, it is possible to mistake a change in any direction as being worthwhile. Around the world, recent shifts in university leadership and management have been towards managerialist approaches that work against a shared responsibility for the academic project. Accusations of managerialism often refer to a general sense that institutions are becoming bureaucratic, or that it is the logic of the market that drives decision-making. But beyond vague complaints, these accusations fail to identify the exact processes whereby managerialism takes hold of the institution. This article hones in on one specific example of institutional change in order to argue that it is implicated in the move towards managerialism: most universities in South Africa have changed from having elected deans, selected by faculty, to executive deans, appointed by selection committee. Crudely distinguished, it can be said that elected deans represent the interests of their faculty up into various institutional structures whereas executive deans are tasked with implementing the decisions of top management down into faculty. This paper tracks the differences between the two forms of deanship through reflections on discussions about such a change at one South African institution, Rhodes University. It analyses the literature to argue that we do not have to choose between patriarchal management and compliance-based managerialism. Instead, we can choose shared responsibility for the academic project. <![CDATA[<b>Dancing on the Learning and Teaching Waves of Change in Africa - HELTASA 2018 Conference, 20-23 November 2018, Nelson Mandela University, Port Elizabeth, South Africa</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2221-40702020000100007&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt Universities have long been characterised by hierarchical and paternalistic management structures and institutional cultures. Change is therefore to be welcomed but, in contexts where social change is urgently needed, it is possible to mistake a change in any direction as being worthwhile. Around the world, recent shifts in university leadership and management have been towards managerialist approaches that work against a shared responsibility for the academic project. Accusations of managerialism often refer to a general sense that institutions are becoming bureaucratic, or that it is the logic of the market that drives decision-making. But beyond vague complaints, these accusations fail to identify the exact processes whereby managerialism takes hold of the institution. This article hones in on one specific example of institutional change in order to argue that it is implicated in the move towards managerialism: most universities in South Africa have changed from having elected deans, selected by faculty, to executive deans, appointed by selection committee. Crudely distinguished, it can be said that elected deans represent the interests of their faculty up into various institutional structures whereas executive deans are tasked with implementing the decisions of top management down into faculty. This paper tracks the differences between the two forms of deanship through reflections on discussions about such a change at one South African institution, Rhodes University. It analyses the literature to argue that we do not have to choose between patriarchal management and compliance-based managerialism. Instead, we can choose shared responsibility for the academic project.