Moore, Patricia Anne
Making a difference : ways of teaching and learning in general national qualifications.
The Open University.
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There is growing evidence of the positive affects of General National Vocational Qualifications on students and widely held views, almost assumptions, on appropriate teaching and learning styles. As these are not explicit in any form of the specifications it is postulated that it is the mediating influence of teachers which will determine the extent to which GNVQs are student-centred in learning and assessment, and how successful any course is in terms of levels of achievement by students. By following multiple lines of evidence in three advanced courses in one institution a comprehensive and robust picture is built up which illustrates the journey through a course of study for students and their teachers. Diverse aspects of the teaching and learning process drawn from differing perspectives, a variety of research reports of GNVQ courses, and the relationship of the significant role of formative and summative assessment in motivation and learning were considered in the literature review. The strands in the research methodology were also drawn together from lines of pursuit suggested by the literature. Data were gathered through student questionnaires, interviews with teachers and students, classroom observations and the scrutiny of students' work, assignments and various other documents. A synthesis of several seemingly disparate theoretical models of teaching and learning is provided leading to a conclusion that there is a much richer and more subtle range of activities occurring in student-centred teaching and learning than is readily explained by any one model. There is persuasive evidence emerging in a small context of current practice in Advanced GNVQ teaching that has resonance with wider studies of effective teaching. This has implications in contemplating the changes in post-16 education consequent upon the introduction of Curriculum 2000, both at institutional level and perhaps nationally.
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