What learning has taken place today, after a day of poster presentation?

Entry 12.6.2010

The move towards the next step towards completion of our ma.

It was a privilege to participate in this poster as a learning tool event. Being able to make comments, asks questions on other posters helped me to identify guiding questions and I found these comments on my poster: c’est quoi ta question de recherche? Peux-tu la cibler? This seems to be your central question. What do you mean by ‘tools’? do you want to display all the Discourses, or just the ones derived from the data, or the most important to you? How will you choose the level of importance? And a longer one: how people use communicative message to guide action in their daily lives? Analysis of language-in-use. ‘to put into action their beliefs’ ‘learning … distributed’ Valsiner –‘guiding motivations’. I didn’t understand what actually you want to explore and offer. Maybe to broad?

Then we went into smaller groups, assisted by Mireille and at the end by Gudrun. By listening to the presentations of Lucas, Myriam, Zeynep & Diana, the following comments seemed relevant: when presenting your poster, be in charge of the space and think about your ending. When you prepare for the poster, prepare the talk at the same time, as it may help with what you actually want to put on the poster. Gudrun made it clear that today was a learning poster session, not a scientific one.

Most interesting were Gudrun’s & Mireille’s comments after my presentation, some of which need clarification. ‘you mix up 2 methodologies, look up so and so on: a) what does it mean to be an Austrian? This is what you did in your interview. b) texte figé, quelle idée de bas as-tu de la personne? Valeur et transformation des pratiques, regarde Berger et Luckmann on: social construction of Reality.

The Social Construction of Reality is a book about the sociology of knowledge written by Peter L. Berger and Thomas Luckmann and published in 1966. The work introduced the term social construction into the social sciences and was strongly influenced by the work of Alfred Schutz. The central concept of The Social Construction of Reality is that persons and groups interacting together in a social system form, over time, concepts or mental representations of each other’s actions, and that these concepts eventually become habituated into reciprocal roles played by the actors in relation to each other. When these roles are made available to other members of society to enter into and play out, the reciprocal interactions are said to be institutionalised. In the process of this institutionalisation, meaning is embedded in society. Knowledge and people’s conception (and belief) of what reality is becomes embedded in the institutional fabric of society. Social reality is therefore said to be socially constructed. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Social_Construction_of_Reality

Crucial learning was for me to realise in my poster when i showed the transcript of Dany who talks about the Ridvan message and how it has influenced his teaching practice. He goes on to talk about an example of his work practice.

I thought I had given an example of someone that has read the message, understood it and has used it as a tool to change his ‘work reality’. This may be so, but it is nevertheless his account of what he has done. I haven’t actually seen this at his workplace, I haven’t collected data documenting this ‘reality’.

This was so useful when commenting in the afternoon on my poster and I couldn’t wait to relate this new insight for me, although now I wish I would have waited a bit to see what people themselves would come up with. Professor Portante commented: ‘comment convoquer ses actions réelles? En agéierten Discours. (Bakhtin) Kultur ass de Prozess vun der semiotiséierter Wierklechkeet (Max Weber).

Nadine from 2nd year who has finished her thesis on mentor/mentee was kind enough to listen to my presentation and my aware of some transcription rules and the idea of video recording some time during a collaborative study circle. More difficult for me was the elements prepared by the organisers: how is the idea of development and/or learning integrated in the case-idea? Overall, 4-5 people stopped and were interested in the poster and this was nice.

What options are open now to me, when continuing my work in the summer?

While other questions have come up, (strange but interesting; what does the Bahá’í Faith have to do with your topic?) they may go more in a structured direction. I’m confident that further consultations with professors will help a lot, and maybe finding a professor willing to be my mentor.

So, I wonder how it may be possible to include the following elements in my research project? I have no intention of including all of them, but I would like to be clear about the general direction of my project.

They include: the element of social justice (Freire), some of the elements Karlberg talks about that are necessary to move realities, such as the Discourses we nurture in the Bahá’í community, and the notion of values and level 4 hypergeneralised semiotic field. (Valsiner).

I feel confident enough to continue analysing some of the data I collected and discover new things.

I don’t want to lose the idea that it is important to see the macro, but move towards the micro in order to get back to the macro. Lample has useful definitions of science. “complex entities reveal their inner operations only if they are approached on a multitude of fronts. Statements of what science is and is not are useful so long as they are employed to offer insight and not to reduce. For the purposes of this paper, a phrase like "a system of knowledge and practice" seems sufficient, in that it allows me to discuss science in broad terms. I do hope, however, that what emerges is consistent with the notion of science as an expression of those faculties of the rational soul that, through both sensible and reasonable perception, shed light on the reality of inner and outer phenomena.” (Harper (edited by), 2000)

Finally, I’m in the process of hopefully adding knowledge and practice in my research subject.

Bibliography

Harper (edited by), S. (2000). The Lab, the Temple, and the Market: Reflections at the Intersection of Science, Religion and Development. Harper, Sharon, Kumarian Press.

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