I had recently interviewed for a university lecturer position and the preparation I had done ahead of that seemed to be a worthwhile process in and of itself. I was forced to whittle down abstractions into something tangible, refine my theories, pedagogy, and positions. It also forced me to consider the balance I have always tried to maintain between following my own research interests and how disparate that might present itself to a prospective audience. I see little disconnect between my work in higher education, in ICT4D, in mobile learning, and teacher training, but I can’t assume my audience will feel the same.

So I am just presenting this as I wrote it, minus about 10 pages. I stumbled over a few answers (many, to be sure) but this is my work as it stands.

Research Plan

My research in focused on teacher education with an emphasis on professional practice (the act of becoming a teacher), field practice, ethical technology use, feedback and mentorship, community engagement, literacy, and composition in the humanities. I come from a research intensive, evidence-driven, theoretically grounded, methodologically innovative, and highly visible view of academic practice. I pride myself on innovative and robust methodological work. I have expertise in ethnography, case study models, interviews, focus groups, mixed methods, media-based methods. I have worked developing analytical models for sound, visuals, video, text, and ICT based communication, and participatory research methods.

I think teachers need to be researchers and vice versa. Developing capacity in teachers for conducting their own research is critical. Teachers must engage in the scholarship of teaching:


The projects I work on reflect this research position, however disparate they might seem. These don’t include the development work I do (aside from #2, which is loosely development based). All are ongoing in some phase or another and I doubt any of these will ever actually finish as such. Research never really does. The links are some of the outputs of this research.

Knowledge Exchange

I think I always knew this, but it is becoming clear how critical the capacity for obtaining funding is or has become, so I like to highlight the fact that the work I do (across development, humanities, teacher education, mobile technology) is or can be attractive to funders.

Pedagogy Overall

I draw on several pedagogical positions that cohere into a comprehensive whole. I use pedagogies that align with Macquarie’s vision here.

Pedagogy on Teaching Practice

I look to engage teachers across the three domains of teaching. I believe that teachers need creativity, compassion, capacity, and resilience. I believe that teachers need networks behind them.   

Drawing on several theorists and researchers in this field, I am trying to build capacity for  

Mobile learning


My view on assessment is that this a a balance between assessment for learning (formative assessment) and assessment of learning (summative assessment), and how one can affect the other in either positive or negative ways. I make a case for greater use of teachers’ judgements in summative assessment. This research, concerning the impact of summative assessment, particularly high-stakes testing and examinations, on students’ motivation for learning and on teachers and the curriculum, reveals detrimental effects. Suggestions for changes that would reduce the negative effects include making greater use of teachers’ summative assessment. However, this raises other issues, about the reliability and validity of teachers’ assessment. I am guided in no small part by the Manifesto for Teaching Online.

Assessment is an act of interpretation, not just measurement.

I tend to prefer:

Theoretical position

This was a difficult one to whittle down as I am influenced by many. My theoretical position in grounded in community based theories. I am drawn to but not enamored of Community of Practice (CoP) theory in teacher education as it provides a model for analyzing processes of becoming and peripheral participation (like student teachers). I am also drawn to aspects of apprenticeship and learning trajectories advanced within CoP. I draw inspiration theoretically from Vygotsky’s zone of proximal development, as many education types are. I further draw theoretical clarity from sociomateriality, or this idea that humans, technology, and material are not fully discrete but rather systems of activity. I believe these larger systems of activity are critical to developing comprehensive approaches to teacher education. I believe that too narrow a view negates this systematic understanding and contributes to reducing teaching to instrumentation. Teachers are agents of systemic change (or activity). 

2 Responses

  1. As usual, it is such a pleasure reading your clear and articulated thoughts! They might not start so clear and well articulated, I imagine, but the final version is always beautifully crafted!
    I am looking at student’s agency/ lack of in their digital practice (what I see when looking at their informal system of tools, their PLEs) and you said you use sociomateriality and that teachers are agents of systemic change. Any reading suggestions?
    My admiration and best of luck with the outcome of your interview​

    1. Thanks Caroline! Let me see if I can dig up a good reading list for you. How far along are you with the PhD? All my best!

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