Education for Being: Producing Identities

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Ronald Barnett (and others) write about times of uncertainty and the resulting need for a new focus for tertiary education. Barnett claims that in conditions of supercomplexity, the time is right for tertiary education to focus not merely on epistemology but on ontology, i.e. the being of the student. Implicit in such a proposal is the notion of identity and how graduate identities are produced in tertiary education and, indeed, how identities are destabilised. In such circumstances students are confronted with conditions of pedagogical disturbance. Tertiary teachers are therefore charged with developing new pedagogies that tend to such challenges.

This paper briefly investigates some of the theories of education for being and reports on the ways in which several tertiary teachers handle both the conditions of uncertainty and the corresponding challenges for the production of student identities - particularly identities that are resilient, courageous and socially just. Is it possible to focus on such goals in the current contexts of tertiary education?


Keywords: Pedagogy, Tertiary Education, Identities
Stream: Equity, Social Justice and Social Change; Community, Culture, Globalisation
Presentation Type: 30 minute Paper Presentation in English
Paper: A paper has not yet been submitted.


Linda Keesing-Styles

Manager, Te Puna Ako (Learning and Teaching Centre)
Academic Development, Unitec Institute of Technology

Auckland, New Zealand

I currently manage Te Puna Ako (Wellspring of Learning and Teaching) which is the unit in our institution which provides both professional development for teachers, guidance for curriculum development and learning support for students. I have just completed a PhD thesis which focuses on teaching for social justice in an age of uncertainty. My particular interests are in tertiary curriculum and pedagogy and the ways in which these need to be reconceived in current complex tertiary environments. My previous role as Associate Dean in our institution's Vocational Education Division allowed me to focus on support for pre-degree education.

Ref: L09P1262