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Once More Unto the Breach ...

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After a trying Christmas, I have finally been able to spare a bit of time again for my Fellowship application/writeup about using the Student Forums to support better referencing.

Re-reading my previous e-tivity writeup, I realise it's completely unsuitable for the purpose as it stands. I am not going to procrastinate any longer undertake a proper scholarly review of literature in the field, as if I do that, I will never get the damn thing in. I have got a couple of good articles and I can say I am going to do the proper scholarly thing as part of my application for Senior Fellowship - or whatever the next stage of the HEA is called.

I have found a little set of articles which talk about Voice and Dialogue (and Silence) in referencing practice. They are from tutors who work with students for whom English is a Second Language (ESL), so they are also often dealing with other cultural approaches to writing. They understand our own attitude as culturally situated - not as if we are Jedi battling the Dark Side of plagiarism. The Western (these articles are North American) way is middle class as well as white, and so their reflections are useful to me in thinking about how my more working class students might view referencing.

As well as these, I have got some articles from the module I'm teaching on Education and Equalities, which also talk about Voice and Dialogue.

I'm starting to be reminded of Bakthin's writing on dialogism, which I drew on in my PhD to explore how a poem by a black lesbian writer created Voice. This seems like a promising path to hint at exploring for the future although I must be careful not to get lured off to the Dark Side of procrastination by these thoughts!


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Black cat and pink blanket

Starting the reading for my Applaud application

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Edited by Anita Pilgrim, Monday, 28 Nov 2016, 13:05

For several months I have had to put aside my application for Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (being conducted through the university's Applaud programme), owing to a sudden upsurge in work.

I have felt just like my own students! pleading a mixture of work-related, family-related and medical reasons (I had a chest infection as well), as I explained to my students that I would not be quite as quick as I usually like to be over marking their assignments. My HEA Fellowship application was actually delayed because my two referees were put under pressure at work too, and didn't have time to do the references.

In the meantime, I felt I should bump up my mostly drafted application with some fresh reading so I did a desultory Google Scholar search for relevant articles. One of my colleagues also mentioned a highly relevant article she had written in a powerpoint presentation. I put these into a list 'for later'.

Much later! I realised that my plan to do my application and other personal development work on Thursday was just not happening. I am always telling my students that setting aside a special day for studying is not a good way to manage time, and I have found this out the hard way myself. I am switching to trying to read an article per day instead.

That habit also takes time to get into! Today I had to rush off to the supermarket at first light as my daughter revealed late yesterday that she had forgotten she would need a pepper, a courgette, some sweetcorn and frozen peas for her Home Economics class. However, mindful of setting a good example to my students, I did try to do some reading a bit later in the day.

I spent about fifteen minutes trying to track down my colleague's article. The internet link she provided in the powerpoint took too long to download. The OU online Library disclaimed any knowledge of the journal in which she had published. I guess I will have to ask her to email me a copy! sad

I moved on to one of the Google scholar articles (one of the few relevant ones I managed to pick out of a big list of irrelevant ones!). When I looked it up in the OU online Library, I inadvertently found out that their search engine will throw up all articles with relevant terms in their titles and key words, so I found a few more articles that way approve

By now I was a bit tired and time was pressing on, so I just carefully put the details of a couple of the articles in my newly formatted Annotated Bibliography (more on this soon). I think I will have a cup of tea after all that!

Cup of tea and slice of cake

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Black cat and pink blanket

The Constant Student

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Edited by Anita Pilgrim, Saturday, 8 Oct 2016, 07:29

At our regional staff development event, I had the opportunity to talk to an advisor about getting Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) with the university's support. I have been trying to figure this out for two or three years, with various life events preventing me from getting on with it, so I was delighted to hear that a new fast-track system has been set up to support Associate Lecturers (ALs) in doing this. Applaud provides us with a mentor, forums and other means to discuss how best to go about this.

Chatting with an advisor first was very helpful. She was able to tell me that since I have a ready-made dissertation which I can edit and put in for my application, I should go straight for Fellowship of the HEA, not hang about doing an Associate Fellowship first approve

I found getting onto the Applaud programme very easy. Unfortunately, you need two referees for the Fellowship application and the university were just starting what proved to be a monumental task of changing over the way we organise our tutorials. Both my referees were snowed under with work. I was actually also quite busy, so I pretended that only because of the references, I wouldn't be able to put my application in quite yet and deferred to the November presentation.

I did do a Google Scholar search for articles about 'teaching referencing' and 'online forum teaching', to bump up the literature review section of my dissertation and came up with a few (about which more soon).

Screenshot of google scholar search terms

I was very busy making sure my B presentation students (start in February) finished off their final module assignment, and then setting up for my J presentation (starts in October). Also coping with some 'interesting' problems thrown up by the new ways of organising our tutorials thoughtful. I had an opportunity to apply for a peer support programme to work with other ALs. I was disappointed to be knocked back - especially on the grounds that I hadn't yet done the 3 week Tutor Moderator programme. I explained that the 10 week eLate(D) programme, which I have done, is generally regarded as more rigorous, but it was too late by then, I was just on the reserve list.

When I saw that there were some spaces in the Tutor Moderator programme, I decided to go for it, so that I couldn't be knocked back for not having that qualification as well. It's true that I am so busy I didn't even have time to clean up the cat sick on my kitchen floor last night dead but I'm sure I'll fit in the studies somehow. How hard can it be? big grin My students do it all the time.


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