Reading constructive alignment against the grain at the University of the South Pacific

Burnett, Greg (2019) Reading constructive alignment against the grain at the University of the South Pacific. Directions: A Journal of Education Studies, 33 (1). pp. 100-107.

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Abstract

Constructive alignment, as a way of framing curriculum, and by extension teaching and learning, has widespread appeal. At the University of the South Pacific (USP) generally, and within the School of Education (SOED) more specifically, it has been presented as an unquestioned means toward greater quality in the education programs the university offers. Although necessary at a certain level, its unquestioned embrace, however, raises the need for some critical reflection. In the spirit of opening up further discussion among colleagues and others, this article offers a critique of constructive alignment from a number of perspectives including: its seeming resistance to complex educational realities; its technical rationality in the face of non-linear and organic aspects of teaching and learning in the Pacific; its discursive potential to disempower learners; and the tensions it produces with beliefs about autonomous, agential learners in democratic relationships with teachers. This article suggests an alternative set of alignments that must at least preface the constructive alignment work being undertaken at USP. In so doing, the article raises deeper theoretical issues concerning the purpose of teaching and learning at USP and SOED in particular.

Item ID: 63048
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1011-5B46
Additional Information:

This article is available Open Access via the publisher's website.

Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2020 20:15
FoR Codes: 13 EDUCATION > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130311 Pacific Peoples Education @ 50%
13 EDUCATION > 1301 Education Systems > 130103 Higher Education @ 50%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9399 Other Education and Training > 939906 Pacific Peoples Education @ 50%
93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9304 School/Institution > 930403 School/Institution Policies and Development @ 50%
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