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FINNUT-Forskning og innovasjon i utdanningssektoren

Pedagogicizing the 21st Century: global research into learning beyond the school - An international symposium

Awarded: NOK 74,999

Whilst learning is central to most understandings of what it is to be human, we now live, it is commonly understood, in a knowledge society (Castells, 2000) where being educated defines life chances more than ever before. This project brings together accounts of learning from around the world in organisations, spaces and places that are schooled but not school. In very different societies the case studies show the value and meaning of learning when it is not defined by schooling despite the extraordinarily dominant role that a singular but world view of school exercises across the social imagination of what learning could be around the world (Baker, 2014). The project explores examples of learning organisation, pedagogicization, informal learning and social education as they are instantiated in diverse settings showing not only how understandings of education are framed in terms of local versions of schooling but what being educated could and should mean in very different social and political contexts (Levinson, Foley, & Holland, 1996). It brings together accounts of learning outside of school which differ theoretically not only in how they conceptualise learning, but how each account relates to a normative presumption about the institutional nature of education within a range of societies. It contains rich detailed case studies of innovative projects, new kinds of learning institutions, youth peer-driven and community- based activities and public pedagogies as well as engaging with the dimensions of an argument about the place and nature of learning outside of the school from very different perspectives. It challenges dominant versions of school around the world with its homogenized, standardised, testable outcomes driven, human capital version of education, at the same time as critically discussing the value and place of non-institutionalised learning. The Project consists of two parts. First, an international seminar held in Oslo from the 21st to the 23rd of September 2016. Participants came from Mexico, Bristol (UK), Netherlands, South-Korea, Australia, Shanghai China, India as well as senior and junior researchers from the Department of Education, University of Oslo. Second, an international book published by Routledge that is under production and will be published during Spring 2018.

The aim of the proposed symposium, taking place in Oslo (21-23 September 2016), is to bring together international accounts of learning outside of school which differ theoretically not only in how they conceptualize learning, but how each account relates to a normative presumption about the institutional nature of education within a range of societies. The symposium will be structured to ensure full and proper debate of the meaning of the out-of-school sector within each country in order to produce comparative and contrasting analyses. At first glance it may seem as if educational research in out-of-school settings and the enormous body of work studying schools and schooling are constituted more in opposition with each other thus generating debate. However, there are three areas common in research across both sets of domains. First is an interest in difficult to measure so-called, 21st-century skills and/or literacies (Binkley et al., 2012). There is considerable agreement that they are developed in the interstices of formal and informal learning experiences, and that they are frequently rooted in an unequal distribution of social and cultural capital (Erstad & Sefton Green, 2013). Secondly, all established democracies are experiencing significant decline in formal political participation at the same time as there is an increase in online and social civil society. With a broad decline in interpersonal trust and a growth in forms of bureaucratic and digital communication, how civic society is being reconstituted and what it means to become a digital citizen are frequently opaque and difficult to describe in both formal, informal and non-formal educational activities (Putnam, 2015).Finally, there is increased interest in the pedagogicization of everyday life (Moore, Arnot, Beck, & Daniels, 2009). To reflect on these issues we have strategically invited people from diverse countries such as the Netherlands, UK, Mexico, US, South Korea, India and China.

Funding scheme:

FINNUT-Forskning og innovasjon i utdanningssektoren