The final chapter of the book – Chapter 20 – should be finished or close to finished this week. It’s currently called “Creating epistemic environments: learning, teaching and design”
It opens with this wonderful quote from Andy Clark
“We do not just self-engineer better worlds to think in. We self-engineer ourselves to think and perform better in the worlds we find ourselves in. We self-engineer worlds in which to build better worlds to think in. We build better tools to think with and to use these very tools to discover still better tools to think with. We tune the way we use these tools by building educational practices to train ourselves to use our best cognitive tools better” (Clark, 2008, p59).
This richly recursive conception of “self-engineering” provides both resources and challenges for those involved in rethinking professional education.
We’re particularly taken with the idea of “wicked systemic problems” – which feature quite strongly in the 4th of the educational approaches we describe in Chapter 19. So we’ve uploaded a page or so on this topic – may not be quite the final version, but won’t be far off.
We’ll be adding some excerpts from near-to-finished versions of the chapters of the Epistemic Fluency book over the next few days.
I’d say we’re 95% finished on the Epistemic Fluency book, but it may be that the last 5% will take longer than we’d like.
Chapter 19 (Teaching and Learning for Epistemic Fluency) is almost done.
“We address two major questions, primed by the issues raised in Chapters 17 and 18. How can students develop:
- flexible conceptual resources that enable professional meaning-making and action?
- flexible epistemic resources that enable inquiry that produces actionable understanding?
We claim that well-designed tasks for professional learning are simultaneously professional (actionable; situated), conceptual and epistemic. Such tasks involve the weaving of epistemic forms and epistemic games that are played in professions and a dynamic – embodied and embedded – assembling of actionable concepts. These tasks stimulate discourse that integrates generic (formal) and situated (functional) kinds of knowledge, and formal and functional ways of knowing. They involve knowledge that is both: coherent and contingent, structured and experiential, explicit and tacit.”
The final report for DP0988307 (“Professional learning for knowledgeable action and innovation: The development of epistemic fluency in higher education.”) has been submitted to the Australian Research Council. Now to get the book of the project finished…