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2013 Master's Level Graduate Research Conference

Session I - Session II - Session III

Engaged Students, Engaged Learners: Using a Pedagogy of Engagement to Foster Learning for All

Education has been shaped by the discourse of the “achievement gap” for decades. This so-called gap is based on statistical data primarily revolving around standardized tests in education. The “gap,” so to speak, is the differential found between groups of students, particularly between the white, middle-class students and students of diverse ethnicities and/or low socio-economic status. While such a differential exists between multiple groups of students, educators need to re-frame the deficit-model of education that the concept of the achievement gap furthers. The question of the achievement gap should be, instead, one of student engagement, as engaged students are engaged learners. This presentation demonstrates that by utilizing an active pedagogy paired with the tools of discourse analysis, educators can manifest learner engagement. Using such a pedagogy transforms students’ diversities from detriment to strength. Moreover, learning is authentic and directly related to students’ own lives, breaking down the barrier between school and the outside world.

Presenter: Kristen Niemi (the State University of New York at Fredonia) -- niem8215@fredonia.edu
Topic: Education III - Panel
Location: 14 Hartwell
Time: 10:30 am (Session II)