Facilitating Enquiry Based Learning Within Midwifery Education:\ud A Self Study Investigating My Professional, Knowledge and Learning Beliefs and Their Impact on the Learning Environment
LB2361 | LB | RT | LB2300
Midwifery education requires that rigorous efforts are made to link theory to practice for the benefit of women and families and yet research has shown that equipping students with scientific theory is not enough to ensure effective practice. For this reason, teaching and learning strategies which develop the student’s knowledge and learning beliefs to enable them to appreciate the complexity of practice are encouraged. Enquiry Based Learning (EBL) is one such approach and has been evaluated as effective in promoting higher order skills. However, it has been suggested that the position of the educator with regards to their professional, knowledge and learning beliefs will determine whether or not desired outcomes are achievable (Savin-Baden 2003). For this reason, educational researchers such as Elliott (1991) suggest that reflective inquiry into action is essential if practitioners are to realise the ends of their intentions. Utilising the work of Schön, practical action research allows the inquirer to engage in a process of self understanding and professional development (Konsik 2001) that looks not just at action but the motive for that action through self-study (McNiff et al. 1996). This research therefore utilised the conceptual framework of self-study and, through the use of dialectical reflection on three critical incidents in practice, investigated the question ““How might my professional, knowledge and learning beliefs impact on the implementation of EBL?”. The study confirmed the work of Savin-Baden (2003) suggesting that positioning in relation to tacit beliefs about knowledge, learning and professional identity can undermine conscious attempts to promote complex student learning.
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