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Students, Learning and Teaching

Published onJul 09, 2019
Students, Learning and Teaching

Included here are a range of texts that reflect on pedagogy and teaching. They are not conventional ‘who to’ guides on writing ‘learning objectives’ and preferred styles of lecturing. Rather, they focus on the ethics and politics of teaching itself and range from bell hooks’ extraordinary books on learning and transgression to Mitch Albom’s tribute to his sociology teacher Morrie Schwartz. I have also included some references on teaching, race and difference and the importance of addressing issues of power in the classroom (particularly Bhattacharyya), as well as the relationship between teaching and intellectual generosity (see Roman and Coles).

Richard Hoggart’s memoir listed here also demonstrates the central role of teaching in writing. As an extra-mural evening teacher in Hull in the 1950s Hoggart was free during the day to write his classic The Uses of Literacy. It was also true for Raymond Williams and E.P. Thompson who wrote their early books while teaching at night. For each of them teaching provided a way to test and try out their ideas. This serves as a reminder that students are after all our first public and our main audience.

There are also references here to the new opportunities of using mass online teaching platforms or MOOCs. Here there is both the potential to reach wider audiences but, at the same time, as Marc Parry points out, MOOCs are also be used to replace actual teachers in the classroom and as a way to enable educational cut backs on staffing. I have also included two books on how to be a more compelling public speaker by David Yewman and his co-author Andy Craig. These guides are crammed with tips and good ideas that are applicable when giving a first-year undergraduate lecture or a conference keynote.

  • Albom, Mitch. (1997) Tuesdays with Morrie: an Old man and Young Man and Life’s Great Lesson. New York: Doubleday.

  • Bhattacharyya, Gargi. (1999) ‘Teaching Race in Cultural Studies: a Ten-step Programme of Personal Development’, in John Solomos and Martin Bulmer, eds. Ethnic and Racial Studies Today. London: Routledge, pp. 73–84.

  • Callender, Claire and Jackson, Jonathan. (2005) ‘Does the Fear of Debt Deter Students from Higher Education?’, Journal of Social Policy, 34: 509–540.

  • Craig, Andy and Yewman, David. (2014) Weekend Language: Presenting with More Stories and Less Powerpoint. Vancouver and Washington, DC: Elevatorspeech.

  • Coles, Romand. (1997) Rethinking Generosity: Critical Theory and the Politics of Caritas. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.

  • Dewey, John. (1910) How We Think. Boston, MA: D.C. Heath.

  • Dobson, Stephen. (2006) ‘The Assessment of Student PowerPoint Presentations – Attempting the Impossible?’, Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 31(1): 109–119.

  • Hoggart, Richard. (1991) A Sort of Clowning – Life and Times: 1940–1959. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

  • hooks, bell. (2003) Teaching Community: A Pedagogy of Hope. New York: Routledge.

  • hooks, bell. (1994) Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom. New York: Routledge.

  • Nietzsche, Friedrich. (1909) On the Future of Our Educational Institutions: Homer and Classical Philology. London: George Allen & Unwin.

  • Parry, Marc. (2013) ‘A Star MOOC Professor Defects – at Least for Now’, The Chronicle of Higher Education, 3 September,

  • Roman, Leslie G. (2015) ‘Making and Moving Publics: Stuart Hall’s Projects, Maximal Selves and Education’, Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, 36(2): 200–226, DOI: 10.1080/01596306.2015.1014225.

  • Yewman, David. (2007) On Getting to the Point. Vancouver and Washington, DC: DASH Consulting, Inc.

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