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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Moray House School of Education and Sport : Education

Postgraduate Course: The Anthropology of Education and Learning (EDUA11385)

Course Outline
SchoolMoray House School of Education and Sport CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThe course forms part of the MSc Education (Comparative Education and International Development) pathway and provides an in-depth exploration of issues of comparative education, using the insights gained from social anthropology, to complement the broader approaches to international comparison.
Course description This course explores how the insights and concepts gained through the discipline of social anthropology, including the ethnographic methodology that underlies it, can add to our understandings of educational theory and practice. At the same time it also aims to show how a detailed examination of teaching and learning processes in different cultural contexts might add to knowledge about the relationship between personhood, learning and culture. The course will pay attention to classic categories such as 'gender', 'class', 'race', 'kinship', 'religion' and 'nation', at the same time as acknowledging the complex intersectionality of these with respect to contemporary human experiences of migration. Study will be structured around cross-cultural comparisons of themes such as literacy, violence, citizenship, discipline, ritual, language and copying. Aspects of education and learning throughout the life course will be covered, as well as both formal (institutional) and informal practices of learning. In examining such processes in detail using ethnographic studies of education from around the world (regional foci will include India, China, the Pacific, the U.S., Europe, the Middle East and Latin America), this course aims to encourage students to think critically about both the potentials and problems of applying Western discourses, models and systems of education as a form of 'development'. It aims therefore to give students a confident, and culturally sensitive, grounding from which to make comparisons of teaching and learning in a global context.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  0
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 196 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) There will be 2 summative assessments:«br /»
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1. Task 1 (70%) Continuous Assessment of Reflective Journal.«br /»
The journal will be composed of 4 entries : Entries 1 and 2 (1500 words) to be submitted together usually 4 weeks into the course; entries 3 and 4 (1500 words) submitted usually 8 weeks into the course. These word counts do not include the bibliography.«br /»
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The journal is a critical, reflective exploration of the reading and learning on the course. The content of the journal entry will be supported by: lectures, and reading for each seminar (2 to 3 articles) followed by the completion of a structured individual worksheet which is then shared with a group of peers and forms the basis of a group task. Tutor will provide formative feedback on all of these during seminars which should feed into the reflective journal. Additional readings will also be suggested each week which students may wish to follow up.«br /»
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Please note: a new set of criteria for how the reflective journal is marked will be provided, as will examples of journal entries.«br /»
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2. Task 2 (30%). Group Presentation: Critical Review of an Ethnographic Monograph.«br /»
Students will be placed into groups depending on the choice they make between 5 or 6 ethnographic monographs (available as e-books). Students will be given responsibility to read the monograph during the semester with their group, to organize bi-weekly 'book group' meetings to discuss and make notes on this. They should prepare a group presentation on their chosen monograph for the seminar group. Group presentations will be videoed and a new set of marking criteria developed. In addition, students will be asked to express, in their reflective diaries, what their contribution to bi-weekly book group meetings and the group presentation was, and to highlight aspects of self and peer involvement that they think are important. The latter is to ensure that discrepancies in contribution or issues are brought to the attention of the tutor.«br /»
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ALL students taking this course will need to achieve at least 40% of the total marks available in Task 1 AND 40% of total marks available in Task 2 in order to pass.
Feedback During seminars the tutor will give students and groups feedback on the tasks they are carrying out. The tutor will link this to how they could be reflecting on these tasks and reading in their Reflective Journals. The Journals themselves will be assessed at two points during the course and written feedback will be given at these times. The tutor will also give feedback and advice on working well as a group and on formatively assessed group work given as part of the course. This will feed forward into the group presentation which is summatively assessed later in the course.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Critically evaluate the relevance of anthropological concepts to theories and practices of education.
  2. Demonstrate a critical understanding of how education can both reproduce and challenge culture and society around the world.
  3. Confidently and sensitively employ cross-cultural comparisons of education and learning.
  4. Critically discuss and analyse full-length ethnographic approaches to the study of education.
  5. Apply critical awareness and reflexivity when exploring the relationship between education and international development.
Reading List
Indicative Reading for this course includes:

Boyle, H. 2006. Memorization and Learning in Islamic Schools. Comparative Education Review, 50:3, 478-495.

Evans, G. 2006. Educational Failure and Working Class White Children in Britain. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Fong, V. 2005. Only Hope: Coming of Age Under China¿s One-child Policy. Stanford: Stanford University Press.

Froerer, P. 2007. 'Disciplining the Saffron Way: Moral Education and the Hindu Rashtra'. Modern Asian Studies, Vol. 41:5, 1033-1071.

Lave, J. 1982. 'A Comparative Approach to Educational Forms and Learning Processes.' Anthropology and Education Quarterly, 13:2, 181-187.

Lareau, A. 2011. Unequal Childhoods: Class, Race, and Family Life. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press.

Levinson, B. A. U., K. M. Borman, & M. Eisenhart (Eds) 2000. Schooling the Symbolic Animal: Social and Cultural Dimensions of Education. New York: SUNY Press.
Nb. Contains a collection of core readings for the course.

Stambach, A. 2000. Lessons from Mount Kilamanjaro: Schooling, Community and Gender in East Africa. London: Routledge.

Torren, C. 2011. 'The stuff of imagination: what we can learn from Fijian children's ideas about their lives as adults'. Social Analysis, Vol. 55, 23-47.

Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills group presentation skills, collaborative working, critical and analytical skills applied to reading and writing, discussion skills.
Keywordsanthropology,ethnography,comparative education,literacy,kinship,gender,class,religion.
Course organiserDr Courtney Stafford-Walter
Course secretaryMiss Mariana Duarte
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