Education for Being: Producing Identities
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
Manager, Te Puna Ako (Learning and Teaching Centre)