by Erica McWilliam & Shane Dawson
This paper sets out some new ways of thinking and doing pedagogy in the twenty-first century. It indicates how ‘content’ and ‘learning’ are being transformed in the new millennium, and considers some quite precise ways in which schools and universities might be able to make practical pedagogical moves to ‘catch’ the wave of change and ride it, rather than cling to the wreckage of traditional content and processes – even ‘progressive’ ones. The paper begins by considering the changing shape of ‘content’ i.e., of what counts as worth learning. It then proceeds to explore new forms of social engagement and how they can inform a fresh understanding of how learners might engage optimally with ‘content’. Finally it explores what sort of educational research might inform pedagogical change in the short to medium term. All this is set within the context of the urgency and the impetus to pedagogical change and mounting evidence of the entrenchment and obstinacy of our mainstream educational practices.