E846 supports a wide range of professionals, including teachers, working in informal and formal learning environments including educational institutions and workplace settings, to evaluate and develop their practice to support learning. It introduces some of the major issues dominating the areas of learning and its assessment in educational research. In the course, curriculum includes the knowledge base of what is learned or demonstrated in particular activities, subjects or professions. Through your study you will develop a theoretical framework that relates views of learning, knowledge and pedagogy, which can be applied to analyse and evaluate your own and others’ practice.
|About this course:|
|Course work includes:|
|5 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)|
|No residential school|
This course is available for study in the countries shown. Fees and financial support may vary by country.
This course investigates practice and policy in relation to learning and its assessment and the theories that underlie them to better understand learners and how to support them. It draws on sociocultural theories that are increasingly influential as educational tools that offer an understanding and analysis of learning. Sociocultural theories of learning shift the focus of attention from being solely on the learner to thinking about the settings that learners are in and how the resources and the participants including teachers, mentors, colleagues and peers, influence what is made available to learn. Taking account of the wider social context in which learning occurs shows how structures – policies and practices, and beliefs about people and society that underlie them – at institutional level and beyond determine what knowledge and ways of being a person are valued. The course considers how these beliefs, values and structures shape teaching and assessment practice in educational and workplace settings. The course uses sociocultural research in a range of educational and workplace settings to challenge traditional views of the goals for learning and the pedagogic means to achieve them and to offer alternative ways of thinking about how to enhance learning and assess it more validly.
This approach offers a way to better understand:
The course framework relates views of learning, knowledge and pedagogy that are developed through the Study Guide and applied to understand practice as it emerges in settings. This allows you to:
The course approach allows you to maintain an important connection between theory and practice, in that practice is understood as dynamic and emergent. The course will provide you with the tools to develop a critical understanding of the perspective which can be applied to analyse and evaluate your own and others’ practice in any kind of educational institution or situation, including the workplace.
The Study Guide is in five sections:
Section 1 Introduction to the course explains the learning pathway that you will take through the course, and to the course framework and its key concepts. These include: the concepts of theory and practice; the relationship between collective and individual learning and the location of meaning; and the dialectical relationships between people, social activity and the world.
Section 2 Learning and practice offers a sociocultural view on learning and its assessment, and asks you to consider the evidence for the usefulness of examining learning from this perspective. In making these claims, alternative views are explored. Examples drawn from practice highlight the way that an individual agency can be constrained, and offer tools for opening up practice so as to enable participation and learning.
Section 3 Understanding pedagogy takes forward your understanding of learning, and you begin to consider what that might mean for your approach to pedagogy. To help with this, the section introduces you to ideas and tools to use to interrogate your own and others’ practice in order to further develop your view of learning and begin to relate it to practice and pedagogy.
Section 4 Knowledge and practice asks you to consider views and representations of knowledge from both educational and workplace perspectives. This examination is deepened through a study of assessment policy and practice, and how knowledge and achievement are represented and valued within them. There is discussion of the challenge presented by sociocultural views of knowledge to the goals of learning, and how these are addressed is exemplified through case studies that take account of learners’ multiple identities and ways of knowing.
Section 5 Cultural bridging provides you with opportunities to develop your understanding of culture, to synthesise your views about learning and knowledge, and to consider what they suggest about your pedagogy and, in turn, about the practices that you value. Your study is supported with case studies of practice spanning educational and workplace settings, and you are offered a number of ways of examining them to allow you to begin thinking about issues in your own practice.
The Study Guide is supported by three Readers and a course DVD which includes a range of audio-visual resources spanning educational and workplace settings. The course Study Planner includes the study timing for each section of the Study Guide and the associated elearning aspects of the course.
This course can be studied on its own or as a module of the Masters degree in Education.
You must hold a bachelors degree from a UK university or other recognised degree-awarding body, or a qualification at equivalent level.
The course is taught in English, and your spoken and written English must be of an adequate standard for postgraduate study. If English is not your first language, we recommend that you seek assessment under the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Please see their website for details.
You are expected to have experience in education or an allied field as a practitioner.You need not be a currently practising teacher, but you must want to develop your practice and have access to a curriculum and learners (not necessarily in an educational institution) so that you can analyse, implement and evaluate your own practice on a small scale. If you have any doubt about the suitability of the course, please contact our Student Registration & Enquiry Service.
E846 is an optional module in our:
Some postgraduate qualifications allow study to be chosen from other subject areas. We advise you to refer to the relevant qualification descriptions for information on the circumstances in which this module can count towards these qualifications because from time to time the structure and requirements may change.
Sometimes you will not be able to count a module towards a qualification if you have already taken another module with similar content. To check any excluded combinations relating to this module, visit our excluded combination finder or check with our Student Registration & Enquiry Service before registering.
As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the Module Regulations and the Student Regulations which are available on our Essential documents website.
Written transcripts of any audio components and Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) versions of printed material are available. Some Adobe PDF components may not be available or fully accessible using a screen reader and musical notation and mathematical, scientific, and foreign language materials may be particularly difficult to read in this way. Alternative formats of the study materials may be available in the future. Our Services for disabled students website has the latest information about availability.
You will need to spend a considerable amount of time using a personal computer and the internet.
If you have particular study requirements please tell us as soon as possible, as some of our support services may take several weeks to arrange. Visit our Services for disabled students website for more information, including:
Study Guide, DVD, supplementary materials (presented online), online forums, dedicated website.
The DVD can be viewed on PCs with a DVD drive. Alternatively, it can be watched on a DVD player and television.
You will need a computer with internet access to study this course as it includes online activities, which you can access using a web browser.
You can also visit the Technical requirements section for further computing information including the details of the support we provide.
You will have a tutor who will help you with the study material and who will mark and comment on your written work. You can also ask your tutor for advice and guidance. You may have contact with your tutor and tutor group through online forums and there are group tutorials that you are encouraged, but not obliged, to attend. The location of these tutorials depends on the distribution of students taking E846.
Contact our Student Registration & Enquiry Service if you want to know more about study with The Open University before you register.
The assessment details can be found in the facts box above.
You will be expected to submit your tutor-marked assignments (TMAs) online through the eTMA system unless there are some difficulties which prevent you from doing so. In these circumstances, you must negotiate with your tutor to get their agreement to submit your assignment on paper.
Your end-of-module assessment (EMA) must be submitted electronically.
The details given here are for the course that starts in October 2014. We expect it to be available once a year.
To register a place on this course return to the top of the page and use the Click to register button.
“I would advise you to think very carefully before taking this module. It was much harder than either of the ...”
“From the course description I thought this module would be interesting. It was certainly that, and I liked my tutor ...”
The Open University is the world’s leading provider of flexible, high quality distance learning. Unlike other universities we are not campus based. You will study in a flexible way that works for you whether you’re at home, at work or on the move. As an OU student you’ll be supported throughout your studies – your tutor or study adviser will guide and advise you, offer detailed feedback on your assignments, and help with any study issues. Tuition might be in face-to-face groups, via online tutorials, or by phone.
For more information about distance learning at the OU read Study explained.
|About this course:|
|Course work includes:|
|5 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)|
|No residential school|
See the satisfaction survey results for this course.
Try our frequently asked questions.
Come and meet us at an event near you.
Or contact an adviser by Email or call +44(0) 845 300 60 90 +44(0) 845 366 60 35