Invitation to submit a proposal for the 2022 Global Education Symposium

2022-06-22

Dear Colleagues,

You are invited to submit a proposal to present at the 2022 Global Symposium on Education Innovation. We have decided on a new format for the 2022 Symposium. This year, we want to try a two-day format in which participants share their ideas of something they intend to do differently in their teaching post-Covid. 

The Covid epidemic of the last two years has presented teachers, professors, students, and parents with a great many challenges.  But along with the challenges, those who teach have learned to be highly adaptable, flexible, and innovative in their approaches to teaching and learning.  They have learned to practice resilient pedagogy (Clum et al., 2022). As you return to teaching in the new school year, it is quite likely that you will do some things differently from how you have done them in the past. 

Here is the invitational challenge we set before you as participants. At our first meeting via ZOOM, to be held on August 26, 2022, we invite you to share an innovative or different mode of teaching or organizing, etc., one that you might experiment with this fall when school is back in session. Then, at a second meeting, to be held in late November or early December (date to be determined), we invite you to tell us what happened, that is, to share your results. It’s all in a spirit of creative/innovative approaches to help students learn, whether in the classroom or via online or blended learning. Here is your opportunity to try out some new method/approach/arrangement, etc., with a follow-up in which you reflect on what happened. It can be about achievement, student attitude, peer teaching, alternative assessment methods, classroom climate, student sharing, homework, etc. It can come from any area: reading, mathematics, language learning, art, physical education, recess, whatever. Keep it focused, manageable, typically small-scale, and measurable.

This approach to “on the fly” experimental teaching, called action research, in which the instructor is the researcher (the researcher is the instructor), was developed in the 1930s by psychologist Kurt Lewin and first tested in the 1940s. His “motto” was “no action without research, no research without action.”  Like teaching itself, action research is “messy,” “real world,” stuff. 

So here is what we ask you to do for the August 26 meeting:

1. Identify a topic or method you would like to test with students

2. Learn about it, do a little reading, gather some information

3. Review the literature to find out what we know about this approach

4. Develop a plan for teaching

5. Share your plan at our August 26 zoom meeting.

Then, we will meet again at a date (to be announced soon) in late November or early December, where each of you will report on how things went, outcomes, results, lessons learned, etc. Your report will include what happened:

1. The implementation of your plan (how clear is it? Could others use it?)

2. The data you collected (test results, student reflections, attitudes?)

3. Your analysis of your data (How did you evaluate outcomes?)

4. The results of your research (what happened as an outcome?)

5. Your reflections on the experience (what did you learn? What would you do differently? Nest steps?)

A good source for those who want to learn more about action research is Action Research: Improving Schools and Empowering Educators 6th Editionby C. A. Mertler—published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2019.

Also, there are many available sources on the internet. 

Please let Arthur Ellis know if you are interested in being selected to participate in this two-day symposium with fellow educators from around the world. Submit a brief description of what you intend to do, how and when you will do it, etc., and send it to me via email at aellis@spu.edu. The deadline for submission is July 30, 2022.  Certainly, if you have any questions, please let Arthur know. He would love to hear from you. Questions are always good. 

We plan to publish a special edition of the refereed journal, International Dialogues in Education (IDE, David Wicks, editor-in-chief), in which your manuscripts will be considered for publication. 

Thanks, on behalf of our Team: Arthur Ellis, David Wicks, Liz Ebersole, Jeremy Delamarter