Video diaries: a tool to investigate sustainability-related learning in threshold spaces

Roberts, Jane (2011). Video diaries: a tool to investigate sustainability-related learning in threshold spaces. Environmental Education Research, 17(5) pp. 675–688.



This paper takes as a case study an undergraduate field class from a UK university to rural Uganda. It describes and evaluates the use of video diaries as a tool for investigating the process of transformative learning in the context of education for sustainability. The applicability of threshold concept theory to this learning is investigated. Results show the video diary technique to be much more successful in capturing the development of student learning than written diaries. Despite some practical difficulties, rich data were generated. Analysis demonstrated that learning met three of the five criteria for threshold concepts: the learning was transformative, integrative and troublesome. Further research could test whether the learning in this case study met the threshold concept criterion of irreversibility. Further elaboration of the theoretical relationship between threshold concepts, transformative learning and education for sustainability is also needed. It is concluded that the video diary method is potentially transferable to other educational research contexts and may be particularly suitable for researching learning in threshold spaces.

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  • Item ORO ID
  • 29528
  • Item Type
  • Journal Item
  • ISSN
  • 1469-5871
  • Keywords
  • education for sustainable development; fieldwork; threshold concepts; transformative learning; video diaries
  • Academic Unit or School
  • Institute of Educational Technology (IET)
  • Copyright Holders
  • © 2011 Taylor & Francis
  • Depositing User
  • Jane Roberts