Enhancing teaching and learning through 3D pedagogy workshops that decolonise, democratise and diversify the curriculum

Authors: Gabriel, D.

Start date: 6 June 2018

Equality, diversity and inclusion in educational practice are increasingly important dimensions of undergraduate education, rather than secondary considerations. In the UK in 2012, the National Union of Students called for a ‘liberated’ curriculum that challenges and tackles structural inequalities in society, alongside equality and diversity. Since then, due to major government policy changes to the higher education sector, funding is now driven by student outcomes, measured through a new Teaching Excellence Framework, under the auspices of a new Office for Students that has a strong remit for social mobility and improvement in the retention, progress and success of students of colour and non-traditional backgrounds.

To meet student demands and government priorities, higher education institutions must ensure that educational practitioners have the requisite skills to deliver culturally democratic teaching and create inclusive learning environments in which all students can flourish. Enhancing educational practice through workshops focused on reflective practice and critical pedagogy can deliver multiple benefits both to higher education institutions and students.

Critical reflective practice combines critical inquiry and self-reflection with critical analysis to create awareness of how cultural practices and educational policy shape teaching practice. Cultural competence enables educators to deliver cross-cultural and culturally responsive teaching. Diversifying the curriculum can help democratise the learning and teaching environment to enhance student experience and outcomes. This paper is based on a project developed by the author: Enhancing Educational Practice Through 3D Pedagogy Workshops and discusses the preliminary findings of survey and focus group data collected following pilot workshops at two UK universities which aims to: advance educational practice by enhancing the cultural competence of educational practitioners; equip educators with the knowledge and skills to decolonise, diversify and democratise the curriculum and enhance educational practice by promoting reflexive teaching.

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