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Is "pedagogy" the right term for the eportfolio community?

Posted By Administration, Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Updated: Thursday, October 17, 2013

May 24th, 2011

Though we as a community of practice would characterize our commitment to eportoflios, most likely, as also a commitment to a focus on student *learning* as opposed to the traditional focus on teaching. The word "pedagogy," however, mean studying how teachers teach. It is a study of teaching. The literal meaning is "to lead a child." In other words, pedagogy carries baggage we may not be aware of: it's common use comes from the culture of teaching -- and is evokes behaviorism in which students are objects to be acted on.

Instead of "pedagogy," we should be talking about our theory of learning. We should be talking about "designing for learning," or our "learning theory," and other ways to make it clear our work is distinct from the teaching-centered practices that are still common. Pedagogy envisions a passive student; eportfolios envision an active student. Our words have great power. We must attend to them.

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