Research Students' Education Conference 2015
University House, University of Leeds
Wednesday 29th April 2015
In this Section:
The School of Education at the University of Leeds in collaboration with the Department of Education at the University of York and the School of Education at the University of Sheffield are pleased to announce the Research Students’ Education Conference 2015 (RSEC).
This annual conference provides postgraduate research students in education across the White Rose DTC universities a dynamic environment where they can share different aspects of their Research Journey, no matter the stage of their research they are in.
This year's conference is focused on methodology during our PhD journey. Presentations are encouraged to discuss issues which may include (without being limited to) research experiences, challenges, dilemmas, linking theory to practical experiences, and impact. The conference provides an enriching opportunity to learn from colleagues and expand academic networks.
Professor Stephen Gorard is a Professor of Education and Well-being at the University of Durham. Professor Gorard holds a PhD in Social Sciences from Cardiff University, is a member for the ESRC Grants awarding Panel and an evaluator for the European Commission Directorate-General for Education and Culture, the Department of Work and Pensions, the Food Standards Agency, the Learning and Skills Information Service, and the Educational Endowment Foundation. He is an award winning writer and is the author of nearly 1,000 books and papers. His work has focused educational research methods, research quality, evaluation of education, equity and effectiveness.
Examples of current work and writing appear on his website: http://www.evaluationdesign.co.uk/
University of Leeds
Irfan Rifai (email@example.com)
A dilemma of employing online sources and photographs: ethical and practical issues
Ghada Alhudaithi (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Teachers' attitudes towards the inclusion of children with autism in Saudi Arabian mainstream classrooms
Maria Doukanari (email@example.com)
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) – The case of Cyprus
Katie Gathercole (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Using Adobe Connect to overcome issues of researcher proximity when interviewing children and young people
Jessica Bradley (J.M.Bradley@leeds.ac.uk)
Can I sit next to you? Partnership working in applied linguistics research
Rumana Hossain (email@example.com)
Returnee Professionals Experience in Higher Educational Context: Digging In or Digging Out…
Jin A Kim (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Critical thinking in academic writing
Khawla Badwan (email@example.com)
Whose Language and Why? Reflections on Dealing with Bilingual Interview Data
Melike Bulut (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Reflections on the Use of Stimulated Recall Interviews in a Teacher Education Context
Samyia Ambreen (email@example.com)
Interviewing primary school children informally in an ethnographic research
Nasir Mahmood (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Misrecognition of intersectional performance of gender, religion and education in lives of adult British Pakistanis in educational and social contexts
Arwa Gandeel (email@example.com)
Using interviews to explore teacher beliefs: the role of the researcher
‘I believe they can speak!’ Teachers’ beliefs and practices and the teaching of speaking (poster)
Gisela Oliveira (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Writing to Remember: The role of field notes in starting and developing the data analysis process
Mukrim Thamrin (email@example.com)
Collaborative action research as a means of professional development for English teachers in secondary school in Indonesia (poster)
Paulette Dougnac Quintana (firstname.lastname@example.org)
University - Community Engagement: The case of an anchor University in Chile (poster)
University of Sheffield
Ibtissam Al-Farah (email@example.com)
Women and Education : A case study of IFAD’s Educational Programmes for Women in Yemen
Nordiana Zakir (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Bruneian Preschool Teachers and The Transformation of Early Childhood Landscape in Brunei Darussalam: A Case Study
University of York
Herri Mulyono (email@example.com)
When the data do not meet the statistical assumptions: Some tips
Xiaoyin Yang (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Mobile devices supporting international students to overcome language and culture difficulties during study abroad
Aparna Gummadi (email@example.com)
A study of nutrition education in early years settings in England
Tasnima Aktar (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Orchestrating Listening Strategies: Methodological Concerns
Tasnima Aktar (email@example.com)
Listening Strategies and Good Listeners: a pilot study (poster)
Registration, Tea and Coffee
Welcome Address Dr. Paula Clarke (PGRT) and Regan Holden (UG intern)
Oral presentations 1a
Academic Chair: Professor John Monaghan
Committee Chair: Geoffrey Nsanja
- Herri Mulyono: When the data do not meet the statistical assumptions: Some tips
- Xiaoyin Yang: Mobile devices supporting international students to overcome language and culture difficulties during study abroad
- Irfan Rifai: A dilemma of employing online sources and photographs: ethical and practical issues
- Ibtissam Al-Farah: Women and Education: A case study of IFAD’s Educational Programmes for Women in Yemen
Oral presentations 1b
Academic Chair: Dr. Mary Chambers
Committee Chair: Loreto Aliaga-Salas
- Aparna Gummadi: A study of nutrition education in early years settings in England
- Ghada Alhudaithi: Teachers' attitudes towards the inclusion of children with autism in Saudi Arabian mainstream classrooms
- Maria Doukanari: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) – The case of Cyprus
- Katie Gathercole: Using Adobe Connect to overcome issues of researcher proximity when interviewing children and young people
Coffee/Tea Break and Poster Viewing
Oral presentations 2a
Academic Chair: Dr. Martin Lamb
Committee Chair: Chung Gilliland
- Jessica Bradley: Can I sit next to you? Partnership working in applied linguistics research
- Rumana Hossain: Returnee Professionals Experience in Higher Educational Context: Digging In or Digging Out...
- Jin A Kim: Critical thinking in academic writing
Oral presentations 2b
Academic Chair: Dr. Martin Wedell
Committee Chair: Arwa Gandeel
- Khawla Badwan: Whose Language and Why? Reflections on Dealing with Bilingual Interview Data
- Melike Bulut: Reflections on the Use of Stimulated Recall Interviews in a Teacher Education Context
- Tasnima Aktar: Orchestrating Listening Strategies: Methodological Concerns
Lunch and Poster Viewing
Oral presentations 3a
Academic Chair: Dr. Jean Conteh
Committee Chair: Rumana Hossain
- Samyia Ambreen: Interviewing primary school children informally in an ethnographic research
- Nasir Mahmood: Misrecognition of intersectional performance of gender, religion and education in lives of adult British Pakistanis in educational and social contexts.
- Nordiana Zakir: Bruneian Preschool Teachers and The Transformation of Early Childhood Landscape in Brunei Darussalam: A Case Study
Oral presentations 3b
Academic Chair: Professor Alice Deignan
Committee Chair: Tasnima Aktar
- Arwa Gandeel: Using interviews to explore teacher beliefs: the role of the researcher
- Gisela Oliveira: Writing to Remember: The role of field notes in starting and developing the data analysis process
Round table discussion 1: Planning fieldwork, carrying out data generation, early stage of analysis.
Round table discussion 2: Data analysis, write up and discussion of findings.
Coffee/Tea Break and Poster Viewing
Wine Reception (soft drinks available)
- Mukrim Thamrin: Collaborative action research as a means of professional development for English teachers in secondary school in Indonesia
- Paulette Dougnac Quintana: University - Community Engagement: The case of an anchor University in Chile
- Tasnima Aktar: Listening Strategies and Good Listeners: a pilot study
- Arwa Gandeel: ‘I believe they can speak!’:Teachers’ beliefs and practices and the teaching of speaking
Herri Mulyono: When the data do not meet the statistical assumptions: Some tips
My research is looking at the effect of technology integration in a collaborative writing activity on pupils’ writing achievement in a secondary school in Indonesia. The investigation is both quantitative and qualitative. I used pre-writing test, post-writing test, and delayed post-writing test to evaluate pupils’ writing before and after an intervention and to see if there was a long term effect of the technology integration one month after the intervention.
I interviewed teachers and pupils before and after an intervention to explore their perception about technology integration in a collaborative writing activity. In this presentation, I specifically would share my experience during quantitative data analysis stage. My focus is on what to do when the statistical assumptions fail to meet. The presentation will cover three things: the data screening prior to the data analysis, evaluating sample and sampling technique to respond violation of homogeneity of variance assumption, choosing appropriate statistical tests, and finally arguments for non-significant statistical results.
Xiaoyin Yang: Mobile devices supporting international students to overcome language and culture difficulties during study abroad
International students may face language and cultural difficulties during study abroad (SA) because they are newcomers to the target culture. According to sociocultural theory (SCT), mediation plays an important role in learning. In the SA context, the most obvious source of mediation is native speakers. International students, however, usually experience difficulty when interacting with native speakers, precisely due to difficulties in intercultural communication. Mobile devices, and in particular smartphones, with e-dictionaries, social network apps, and searching engines, might provide an alternative source of mediation in this context.
In this study, international students' use of mobile devices to mediate difficulties during SA is explored. Eight Chinese international students who were doing one-year master courses in the UK participated in the study. Each student was asked to keep a diary of their everyday difficulties and their solutions for four weeks. In the diary, participants were asked to record the nature of their difficulties, the situations, the learning strategies and the mediators that they used. In addition, in order to explore issues raised in the diaries further and check the interpretation of the data, students were asked to attend an interview at the end of each week. The data was analysed using content analysis with pre-determined coding schedule and manual grounded in intercultural communicative competence, SCT, and learning strategies. The key issues at this stage are: 1) the design of the coding schedule and manual, and 2) interpretation of the diaries and interview, in particular linking SCT with the real-world practice.
Irfan Rifai: A dilemma of employing online sources and photographs: ethical and practical issues
Research which considers on using online sources and photographs should carefully address ethical and practical issues pertinent to protecting research subjects. These issues include getting informed consents, anonymising subjects and place, maintaining privacy (private or public domains) and annotating the events. In this presentation, I will be raising the challenges on the ethical and practical concerns in relation to the data which I obtained from YouTube, Facebook, online newspapers, Black Berry Messenger and Photographs. Besides, drawing on social research tradition, I will be discussing strategies to uncover those issues.
Ibtissam Al-Farah: Women and Education : A case study of IFAD’s Educational Programmes for Women in Yemen
Like any other developing country in the world, Yemen is confronted with many problems and challenges. One of the major problems in Yemen which lies at the core of my research is the high level of illiteracy among women. While this is understandably a national problem, it is worth noting that rural areas are the most affected. As a result of this, many International Development Organisations (IDOs) such as International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) have been implementing different educational projects in the country in order to reduce poverty and illiteracy in Yemen. This underscores the main reason why I embarked on the present study which seeks to understand the involvement of IFAD (Italian/UN organisation) in Yemen and to explore the motivational factors behind its involvement.
This interpretative study uses qualitative research methods, including semi-structured interviews, documents and policy analysis. The data collection is divided to two stages. In the first stage I have communicated with my participants by email, telephone and skype interviews. I used this method as a result of the political conflict and the negative impact of the Arab Spring Revolution in Yemen and the difficulty to travel for data collection. However, as a result of multi-challenges I have faced in the first stage and the difficulties to collect the needed data, I decided to travel to Yemen where I did face-to-face interviews. My presentation will highlight the above issues and share my fieldwork experiences, challenges and findings.
Aparna Gummadi: A study of nutrition education in early years settings in England
According to Ofsted (2004), creating habits are developed from a young age and messages about healthy lifestyles need to be delivered in a clear and consistent manner if children are to develop the knowledge, understanding and skills they need to make appropriate food choices and develop positive attitudes to diet and health. NICE (2008) not only stated the importance of nutrition education in early years but also recommended research in the area to bridge the gap of evidence in effectiveness of public intervention and policy changes. The EYFS framework suggests prime areas of early learning goals. Out of which one is Physical development and a key aspect of it is Health and self-care: children know the importance for good health of physical exercise, and a healthy diet, and talk about ways to keep healthy and safe (EYFS 2014). This key aspect is suggested in all the frameworks since 2008.
This research is concentrating on study of this key aspect (suggested in EYFS framework) implementation and effectiveness in various early years settings. The key objective of this research is to study the nutritional education process in early years and congregate ideas to improve the approach. The objective is achieved by focusing on critical components such as observing nutritional education strategies in early year’s settings, The teaching and learning techniques used to implement the strategies. Effects of such activities on children learning outcomes and attitudes. Assessment methods used by staff in children like testing their nutritional knowledge, observing their food choices etc.
Ghada Alhudaithi: Teachers' attitudes towards the inclusion of children with autism in Saudi Arabian mainstream classrooms
In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), children with autism are not yet started in inclusive education, which makes the subject important to investigate. The main objective of this study was to investigate the teachers’ attitudes towards inclusion of children with autism into mainstream classrooms. Female teachers of elementary mainstream schools and of special institutes for children with autism in KSA were investigated. It took place in Riyadh City during the year 2012. Four research questions were established:
- What are the KSA female teachers’ attitudes towards the inclusion of children with autism into mainstream schools?
- Are there any differences between the attitudes of the regular elementary school teachers' and those in institutes for children with autism? If so, what are they?
- What are the effects of some factors on teachers' attitudes towards the inclusion of children with autism into mainstream schools?
- What are the teachers’ views of factors that may hinder inclusion of children with autism in mainstream classrooms?
For quantitative data, the researcher adapted, modified and customised the Opinions Relative to Mainstreaming (ORM) scale (Antonak & Larrivee, 1995). It became 28 Likert type statements. As for qualitative data teachers’ responses to open-ended questions & interviews were used. During 5-months period, data were collected from six hundred teachers were surveyed and twelve were interviewed. 497 (83%) useful questionnaires were returned and analysed. In addition, exclusive discussions were applied. Five themes were developed as important part of the study findings.
In this presentation, I will focus on the main findings, which demonstrates that overall teachers’ attitudes are positive toward inclusion of children with autism. The results provided significant suggestions for the Ministry Of Education (MOE) to further enhance and improve the children inclusion into mainstream schooling and ultimately eliminate the barriers that female teachers’ believe they have.
Maria Doukanari: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) – The case of Cyprus
Background - ADHD is one of the most common and controversial lifelong disorders. The prevalence of school-age children with ADHD is approximately 5.0%. Considering the pivotal role of elementary school teachers in the diagnostic and intervention procedure, holding positive attitudes and having a clear understanding of the disorder is of critical importance.
Aims - The present study had as a purpose to broaden and add to the research base on ADHD by investigating Cypriot elementary school teachers’ knowledge of the disorder and their attitudes towards the instruction of children with ADHD. The study also aimed to explore teachers’ prior INSET experiences and their expectations and recommendations for future INSET.
Design and method - An explanatory mixed methods design of two sequential phases was used. In the first phase, primarily quantitative data were collected through questionnaires (n = 191) while in the second phase qualitative data were obtained through semi-structured interviews (n = 23) and focus groups (n = 4).
Results - On average, Cypriot elementary school teachers correctly responded to 43.3% of the 35 knowledge items. The majority of teachers did not have absolute attitudes regarding children with ADHD. Characteristics such as the nature of ADHD-related behaviours and the severity informed their feelings, beliefs and predispositions to act in certain ways. Although 65.9% had taught at least one student with ADHD during their teaching career, only 15.0% reported experience with relevant formal in-service training (INSET).
Conclusion - Considering the overall findings, it could be argued that with the provision of extensive INSET and support, teachers’ knowledge of ADHD has potential to increase while their attitudes towards the instruction of this group of children are likely to become more favourable.
Katie Gathercole: Using Adobe Connect to overcome issues of researcher proximity when interviewing children and young people
There are many diverse methods employed in studies involving children. Perhaps the most common research method used is the interview approach. In the vast majority of cases, interviews are conducted face-to-face, with the interviewer and child present together in the same location. However, when researcher proximity represents significant challenges, the use of innovative internet technologies have facilitated novel modes of communication. This paper reflects on using Adobe Connect as an alternative to physical face-to face interviewing during a study that explored the educational experiences of children and young people with the medical condition cystic fibrosis (CF). Adobe Connect was used to conduct interviews online with five children and young people between the ages of 9 and 17.
People with CF are not able to physically meet with each other because they are vulnerable to different bacteria that grow in their lungs. While these bacteria are usually harmless to people who do not have CF, they can be harmful if transferred from one person with CF to another. Given that I have CF, the research methods chosen for this study needed to prevent this risk from occurring. While the current study has revealed a number of issues and challenges when using Adobe Connect, this paper argues that the approach not only represents an alternative to physical face-to-face interviews, but should also be considered as a useful method in its own right.
Jessica Bradley: Can I sit next to you? Partnership working in applied linguistics research
In order for research in applied linguistics to be truly ‘applied’, it can be argued that there is a need for researchers and professionals to work closely and collaboratively on a long-term basis (Roberts 2003). As a postgraduate researcher attached to a multi-university AHRC-funded ‘Translating Cultures’ project, my research title was initially broad and related to developing new understandings of multilingual interactions within community arts through investigations of translation and translanguaging practices. Finding a clear focus for my research was a priority for the first few months of my doctorate, as it would define the methodology, research design and the theoretical framework within which I would work. In order to find this clarity of direction, I needed to forge a partnership with an organisation or group who would be happy for me to develop my research around their practice.
In this presentation I will report on the first six months of my doctoral work and the journey to find a focus and a collaborative partnership. In searching for a site and an organisation with whom to work, a number of unexpected challenges emerged. These included how to situate my work within a mobile, fluid and ever-changing sector, my own researcher positioning with regards to approaching potential partners and how to develop a collaborative partnership during the early stages of my research at a point when my objectives were still fairly unfixed. I will therefore share my experiences and my learning points.
Rumana Hossain: Returnee Professionals Experience in Higher Educational Context: Digging In or Digging Out…
This study is an attempt to delve into the returnee professionals’ experience in Higher Educational context who have spent year(s) studying abroad. Much investigation has been carried out on the learning experiences of students while they were studying abroad and also on their psychological adaptation on return. Unfortunately, very few attempts have been made to investigate what use the returnees made of their acquired knowledge and whether they could contribute to national development or fulfil the expectation with which they were sent abroad by the funding bodies. Ghimire and Maharajan’s (2014) study on a group of Nepalese returnee professionals states that most of the participants were driven by personal motivation to use their knowledge and skills to engage in new and useful developments for themselves ignoring the broader national development. This indicates towards an existing ambiguity between the senders and the individuals’ perspective regarding the objective of studying in Western countries especially from a developing third-world country. This study would try to unpack these ambiguities existing between the funders and receivers through an in depth qualitative research: a subjective reality to permit better interpretation of the views of the professionals in question. As the study intends to be from a professional perspective, it could be a case study of 10-15 returnee teachers chosen from various disciplines from both public and private higher education institutions involving a narrative inquiry of their experience. Alongside, there would be a review of the policy documents of the funding bodies and an interview of the stakeholders of the country in question.
Jin A Kim: Critical thinking in academic writing
Academic writing is a vital requirement for Western university study. All students are required to produce written work because producing written work is one of key elements for their assessment across disciplines. Critical thinking is recognised as one of the essential elements of successful writing at university. In other words, the students are required to demonstrate their critical thinking skill in their academic writing. However, teachers and students often see critical thinking as an obstacle or a challenge. In addition, the nature of it is often misunderstood and there is probably no clear agreement as to what it involves. Attempting to address these issues, my research aims to understand postgraduate students’ understanding of critical thinking in their academic writing at the University of Leeds and I will focus on the following questions:
- What characteristics/features do participants perceive successful academic writing to have?
- What difficulties do participants perceive that they have in constructing successful academic writing?
- How do participants define critical thinking?
- What connection do participants perceive between critical thinking and successful academic writing?
- Are there differences between participants in the way this connection is perceived?
- If there are differences, do they correlate with differences in discipline, language or self-defined ethnicity?
In the research, interviews and a document analysis have been employed to collect the data. For interviews, this study uses a design which consists of two different stages of conducting interviews with each participant.
Khawla Badwan: Whose Language and Why? Reflections on Dealing with Bilingual Interview Data
The increasingly diversified and unexpected social encounters that individuals experience in multilingual and multinational spaces call for more attention to how individuals deploy their linguistic and pragmatic resources to adhere to what is appropriate and/or expected. In this spirit, we are all translinguals (Canagarajah 2013). In spite of the emerging theoretical recognition of translanguaging practices, this was not met by research into the language of narrative interviews and the complexity of interviewing bilingual/plurilingual participants. This presentation reports on the experience of generating bilingual interview data as part of a longitudinal, ethnographic study over a period of eight months.
The presentation reflects on a fieldwork experience that involved interviewing eight Arabic-speaking participants from five Arab countries. It discusses how participants meshed their local Arabic variety, a Pan-Arabic variety, and English in response to research questions and the challenges thereof on transcribing, coding, and reporting on research data. It also points at the role of the researcher’s linguistic background on influencing the linguistic choices of the participants, thereby contributing to translanguaging practices. And finally, it questions the act of translating bilingual interview data and the possible recreations and/or manipulations that could occur during this process.
Melike Bulut: Reflections on the Use of Stimulated Recall Interviews in a Teacher Education Context
This presentation will be based on my reflections on and response to the use of stimulated recall interviews in examining language teachers’ interpretations of their own teaching practice. Stimulated recall interviews are one of the multiple qualitative techniques I have chosen for my ongoing research study of five pre-service language teachers’ learning experience during the practicum. Drawing on rather limited literature on the method in the field, I used this particular type of interviews to help my participants recollect their mental processes while teaching in their classroom by prompting their memory with the video-record of their lesson. During the fieldwork, I carried out twelve stimulated recall interviews with five participants.
In this presentation I will talk about the practical, theoretical and methodological challenges I faced while organizing, conducting and analysing stimulated recall interviews as a researcher. I will also mention the educational value of this method in a teacher education context drawing on my participants’ responses to the interviews.
Tasnima Aktar: Orchestrating Listening Strategies: Methodological Concerns
The study is an in-depth investigation in tertiary EFL learners’ listening strategy profile in Bangladesh. The study attempts to explore the pattern of reported use of listening strategies (LS) of tertiary level EFL learners in Bangladesh, the relationship, if any, between their reported use of LS and their performance in a listening test in phase I. Then in phase II, the study aims to elicit via think-aloud protocols listeners’ use of listening strategies with particular listening texts and tasks to see the differences, if any, among the more successful and less successful listeners, and finally to explore their perceptions of what makes a “good” listener.
In this ongoing journey through these phases, the researcher came across a number of methodological concerns emerged-concerns relating to the choice of research methods, to developing Listening Strategy Questionnaire (LSQ), and dealing with quantitative analysis of qualitative protocols. The research design requires a mixed-methods design, but the design of the present study is not in true line with existing definitions or classifications of mixed-methods. The researcher is also concerned about the way she develops and validates Listening Strategy Questionnaire (LSQ) tool. Last but not least, coding and analysing on-line strategies elicited via think aloud protocols have now become a matter of great concern for the researcher. The researcher thinks her experiences dealing with these emerged concerns and problems are worth sharing, with a view to getting valuable feedback.
Samyia Ambreen: Interviewing primary school children informally in an ethnographic research
y doctoral thesis is aimed to explore the nature of pupils' interaction in different abilities groups in an English primary classroom. As part of ethnographic field work, I observed pupils’ group work in year 5. I also interviewed few pupils from the same class to explore their perceptions about group work and grouping structures which include fixed abilities and mixed abilities groups. In fixed abilities groups, pupils are grouped on the basis of their abilities and academic attainment levels assessed through the end of year assessment SATs (standard attainment tests). In mixed abilities groups, pupils from different abilities groups work together as one group.
The participants of the study were young primary school children mostly nine or ten years old so I applied informal conversational type of interview to probe their thinking about the composition of groups and their experiences of working in different grouping structures. Informal conversations are considered as a convenient way to make your participants comfortable during the interview. However, sometimes it can’t be as much easier as we assumed. We can make our participants comfortable by initiating interviews in an informal setting and style. Though, sometimes the process realised us to think anxiously what have we got or lost in terms of interview data. In this presentation, I will talk about the similar kinds of losses and gains I experienced while administering informal interviews with primary children. I will also share the types of challenges; I faced while transcribing, analysing and reporting these ethnographic interviews.
Nasir Mahmood: Misrecognition of intersectional performance of gender, religion and education in lives of adult British Pakistanis in educational and social contexts
In the aftermath of 9/11 and 7/7; Muslims consciousness has increasingly been objectified in terms of their identities and agency as segregated, scripted, reactive and dysfunctional related to terrorism or otherwise in political, social policy, and educational debates (Meer et al. 2014, Keddie, 2013). More importantly in such debates discourses of gender, religion and education are increasingly being implicated in structuring new forms of educational and social inequalities (Gross et al. 2014).
I research a critical question of misrecognition of identities, agency and belonging through four case studies of adult British Pakistanis in educational and social contexts. I will present data from two life histories from the recent fieldwork.
The emergent findings from the data suggest that participants situate intersectional performance of gender, religion and education about their experiences of identities, belonging and agency in the UK’s educational and social contexts. It is argued that the emerging findings are explainable through misrecognition theory. However, the distinctness of their data extends the misrecognition theory of how these participants have re-laid religion, gender and education about their experiences in the “moderate secular” and intersectional logics to contest symbolic and structural oppression and in manifesting positive and creative recognition of their identities, agency and belonging.
Nordiana Zakir: Bruneian Preschool Teachers and The Transformation of Early Childhood Landscape in Brunei Darussalam: A Case Study
This paper reports on some of the initial insights of a PhD doctoral thesis, which investigates the impact of change processes in teaching and learning in Brunei government preschools as a case study. In this presentation I will provide a snapshot of some of the issues and challenges faced by the Brunei preschool teachers in going through the rapid and recent transformation of the early childhood education landscape in Brunei Darussalam.
The participants involved in this study were 123 government preschool teachers for the initial qualitative survey, 4 preschools with 4 preschool teachers and 8 preschool children, and 2 officers from the Ministry of Education, Brunei. This interpretative study uses qualitative research methods, including an open-ended survey questionnaire, classroom observations, semi structured interviews and document analysis.
Thematic analysis of the data is used to identify aspects of change processes and contexts to consider temporal, socio-cultural and socio-political factors, the influence of policy drivers and levers, and the situated responses of these practitioners. The outcomes of the study will provide recommendations for the Brunei Darussalam context, to manage future implementation of change processes in early childhood education, and to consider wider international policy change processes in early childhood education.
Arwa Gandeel: Using interviews to explore teacher beliefs: the role of the researcher
My research study aims to explore English language teachers’ beliefs and their practices regarding the teaching of speaking. The participants are five English language teachers at the English language Institute in a Saudi University. Semi-structured interviews and observation were used to explore teachers’ beliefs and their teaching practices. I conducted two pre-observation interviews and three post-observation interviews with each teacher.
The main focus of this presentation is on interviews. It aims to describe the role of the researcher in planning and conducting interviews. The presentation will be divided into four main parts: rationale, research context, and research design and data collection. First, I will discuss the reasons for using interviews. Then, I will introduce the research context. Next, I will explain how I planned for conducting the interviews, which includes information about the piloting stage. After that, I will provide details about the data collection process: how interviews were conducted, the nature of the interaction between the interviewees and the interviewer. Finally, I will share some reflections and personal tips based on my experience as an interviewer.
Gisela Oliveira: Writing to Remember: The role of field notes in starting and developing the data analysis process
Several researchers will argue that data analysis is not a self-contained activity in any research. It is rather an ongoing, dialogic process between every stage of the research that can start as early as in the definition of the research questions or the conceptual framework.
In this presentation I will explore how writing field notes became part of my researcher routine with a twofold purpose, one, capturing events during observation and, two, reflecting about those events and other aspects of the research. I will also draw some attention to the main challenges I encountered on taking field notes during observation and, finally I will discuss how taking field notes after interviews with participants took more the form of initial interpretation and became a valuable starting point for data analysis. The context for this presentation is a doctoral research on the learning transfer process students experience between University and their one-year work-placements in which data was collected from semi-structured interviews with students and the observation of the same students in their placements.
Mukrim Thamrin: Collaborative action research as a means of professional development for English teachers in secondary school in Indonesia
Teacher engaging in classroom action research has been promoted in Indonesian context since 1995. Yet, the results have not been successful due to contextual constraints (lack of time, limited knowledge, and lack of support) experienced by teachers coupled with the issue of ineffective professional development (PD) in the level of teachers and PD providers. Collaborative action research is a system of action research which is conducted in partnership between an individual/group of teacher(s) in schools with an individual/ a team of outside researcher (s). CAR has been implemented as a means of supporting English teachers to engage in action research in some contexts. Studies show engaging in CAR teachers problems can be resolved although they still face challenges.
My proposed study will adopt the CAR framework to address the issue encountered by the teachers in my context, Indonesia. I will explore the teachers’ perception after participating in CAR – engaging in classroom action research with me, as outside researcher. I intend to apply interpretive paradigm, a multiple qualitative case study. I will select a group English teacher in a secondary school using purposive sampling. Data will be generated through interview, observation, documents, and audio materials/photographs. Data obtained will be analysed using thematic and cross-case analysis employing Miles & Huberman’s framework (1994): data reduction, data display, and conclusion drawing and verification. This study is expected to suggest alternative ways of promoting teachers engaging research through CAR projects via the lenses of English teachers.
Paulette Dougnac Quintana: University - Community Engagement: The case of an anchor University in Chile (poster)
This poster aims to present a research project about university-community engagement that is in its initial design phase. Community engagement is commonly known as the “third mission” of universities (OECD 2011), additional to those of teaching and research, and relates to the way that universities link with the wider community (Chatterton 2000; Montesinos et al. 2008). Current policy and research documents consider community engagement as a two-way, co-creative function where both the university and the community can learn from each other (Research Councils UK 2010), which should be embedded in the research and teaching missions (Inman and Schütze 2010; Moore 2014). This community engagement perspective will guide this research, aimed to explore how this function is carried out in Chile, specifically in the local, anchor universities, which are institutions that have a recognised regional mission, closely related to their cities (Taylor and Luter 2013). Ontological considerations will be very important for this study, as many different concepts are used to define this function and clarifying them for the Chilean context will be an important contribution for the development of this mission by Chilean institutions.
The selected methodology is based on a critical paradigm (Cohen, Manion and Morrison 2000), with the final aim to propose changes that help to improve this function and its contribution to overcome social inequalities through a perspective of community engagement based on a two-way interaction and knowledge exchange. A qualitative case study will be used, considering documentary analysis, ethnographic observation of community-engagement activities and interviews to university authorities, scholars and community members.
Tasnima Aktar: Listening Strategies and Good Listeners: a pilot study (poster)
The study is an investigation of tertiary EFL learners’ listening strategy profile in Bangladesh. The aim of this study is to explore the pattern of reported use of listening strategies (LS) in general of tertiary level EFL learners in Bangladesh, the relationship, if any, between their reported use of LS and their performance in a listening test in phase I. Then in phase II, the study aims to elicit via think-aloud protocols listeners’ use of listening strategies with particular listening texts and tasks to see the differences, if any, among the more successful and less successful listeners, and finally to explore their perceptions of what makes a “good” listener. The pilot findings of 50 tertiary EFL learners of a public university in Bangladesh in phase I show that the overall use of listening strategies among participants is moderate, mean being 3.37. Among listening strategy categories, the use of cognitive strategies is high, mean being 3.46. In the case of the use of individual strategy, planning (metacognitive) strategy is used most frequently.
The pilot study also finds correlation between participants’ use of listening strategies and their performance in a listening test. Among the three categories of listening strategies, both cognitive (p=.034) and socio-affective (p=.041) strategies are correlated with participants’ listening score, though the relationship here is weak. Findings from phase II show a considerable difference between successful listener and less successful listener. Qualitative analysis of think aloud protocols show both high scorer and low scorer are using same type of strategies, but in different frequency and different way. High scorer uses metacognitive strategies a bit more than low scorer, whereas low scorer shows more use of cognitive strategies. Successful and less successful listeners also display differences in their attitudes to and perceptions of listening skill, its difficulties and ‘good’ listeners.
Arwa Gandeel: ‘I believe they can speak!’ Teachers’ beliefs and practices and the teaching of speaking (poster)
It is now widely accepted that to understand what teachers do in the classroom we need to gain insight into the beliefs that shape their work. In this poster, I report the findings of my qualitative research study on teachers’ beliefs and practices regarding the teaching of speaking. The study included five case studies. The participants were five female Saudi English language teachers who are teaching English to the preparatory year students in a Saudi University. The data was collected through semi-structured interviews and classroom observations. This poster describes the beliefs and the practices of the five participant teachers and relationship between their beliefs and practices. It also presents the main implications and contributions of the study to teachers’ professional development and training.
The organising committee would like to thank the following for their help with RSEC 2015:
Professor John Monaghan, Dr Mary Chambers, Dr Martin Lamb, Dr Martin Wedell, Dr Jean Conteh, Dr Matt Homer, Dr Judith Hanks, Stefan Lesnianski, Peter Edwards, the SDDU team, Louise Greaves.
Conference Organising Committee
University of Leeds:
Chung Gilliland, Loreto Aliaga-Salas, Arwa Gandeel, Rumana Hossain, Geoffrey Nsanja, Uma Maniam, Regan Holden, Dr. Paula Clarke
University of York:
Khalid Ibrahim Alahmed, Tasnima Aktar
University of Sheffield: