Articulating Undergraduate Spaces

A three-day workshop
August 8-10, 2002


Centre for the Study of Culture & Society
In association with
Centre for Social Research, Christ College

Venue: Seminar Hall, Ground Floor, Block II, Christ College

 

Supported by

 

The Centre for the Study of Culture and Society and the Centre for Social Research, Christ College, are planning to organise a Workshop on Articulating Undergraduate Spaces. This workshop seeks to address various ways of conceiving the space occupied by the field of undergraduate education. We plan to involve in this debate educationalists, teachers, students and NGOs. Among the issues we would like to discuss include the challenges of vocationalization, the nature and demands of state support and state funding, curricular issues, pedagogical practices, extra-curricular campus spaces, extra-campus spaces etc. The workshop will also generate a set of readings to put undergraduate education into perspective.

PROGRAMME SCHEDULE

Day 1 (8th August 2002)

10 am to 11 am

Welcome:
Dr. Vivek Dhareshwar (Director, CSCS)
Introducing the Workshop:
Ratheesh R (PhD. Student, CSCS)
Perspectives:
Rev. Fr. Sebastian Thekkedathu (Principal, Christ College)
Dr. Mrinalini Sebastian (Fellow, CSCS, Bangalore)

Tea Break (11 am to 11.15 am)

Session 1 (11.15 am to 1 pm): State Support and Funding
Panel:
Dr. Muzaffar Assadi (Department of Political Science, Mysore University, Mysore)
Mr. Gerald Rassendran (Department of Commerce, Christ College, Bangalore)
Discussant: Ms. Vaageshwari (Department of History, Christ College, Bangalore)

Lunch Break (1 pm to 2 pm)

Session 2 (2 pm to 4. 45 pm): Vocationalization
Panel:
Ms. Vinaya Nayak (PhD. Student, CSCS)
Mr. Biju Joseph (Department of Functional English, Marymatha College, Mananthavady, Kannur University)
Ms. Sufiya Pathan (PhD Student, CSCS)
Ms. Geetha Narayanan (Director, Srishti School of Art Design and Technology, Bangalore)
Discussant: Ms. Shana Das (Department of Communicative English, Mt. Carmel College, Bangalore)

Tea Break ( 3.15 pm to 3.30 pm)

Day 2 (9th August 2002)

Session 3 ( 10 am to 12.45 pm): Curriculum
Panel:
Dr. Rajan Gurukkal (School of Social Science, MG University, Kottayam)
Ms. Wandana Sonalkar (Department of Economics, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Marathawada University, Aurangabad)
Mr. Sudhir Krishnaswami (Alternative Law Forum, Bangalore)
Discussant: Ms. Shashikala S (Department of English, Mt. Carmel College, Bangalore)

Lunch Break (12.45 pm to 2 pm)

Session 4 (2 pm to 3.15 pm): Changing Contours of the Classroom
Panel:
Mr. Etienne Rassendran (Department of English, St. Joseph's College, Bangalore)
Mr. M.A. Rahman (Department of Malayalam, Govt. College, Calicut University)
Mr. Shaji Varghese (Centre for Social Research, Christ College, Bangalore)
Discussant: Ms. Sudha Sitharaman(Govt. Arts College, Bangalore)

Tea Break (3.15 pm to 3.30 pm)

Session 5 (3.30 pm to 5 pm): Extra- curricular spaces
Panel:
Mr. N.P. Hafiz Mohammed (Department of Sociology, Farook College, Kozhikode)
Mr. Arul Mani (Department of English, St. Joseph's College, Bangalore)
Discussant: Dr. V Shantha (Department of English, Jyothinivas College, Bangalore)

Day 3 (10th August 2002)

Session 6 (10 am to 11. 30 am): Extra Campus Spaces
Panel:
Mr. Benson Issac (SAMVADA, Bangalore)
Mr. Rahul Srivastava (PUKAR, Mumbai)
Discussant: Mr. V.S. Sreedhara (Department of English, Vijaya College, Bangalore)

Tea Break (11.30 to 11.45)

Session 7 (11.45 am to 1 pm): Innovative Pedagogical Practices
Panel:
Mr. K. Papputy (Madapally College, Badagara, Calicut University)
Ms. Poonam Bir Kasturi (Srishti School of Art Design and Technology, Bangalore)
Mr. Ashish Rajadhyaksha (Senior Fellow, CSCS)
Discussant:: Mr. Rahul Srivastava (PUKAR, Mumbai)

Lunch Break (1 pm to 2 pm)

Session 8 (1 pm to 3.30 pm): Student Panel
Panel:
Ms. Athira P.M. (Final Year LL.B., Law College, Calicut)
Ms. Sruthi Ramaiah ( Second Year, Srishti School of Art Design and Technology, Bangalore)
Ms. Jigyasa Kishore ( Second Year BA Sociology, Christ College, Bangalore)
Ms. Anupama Jayaraman (Third Year BA, Mount Carmel College, Bangalore)
Discussant: Dr. S.V. Srinivas (Fellow, CSCS, Bangalore)

Tea Break (3.30 pm to 3.45 pm)

Closing Remarks and General Discussion: (3.45 pm to 5 pm)
Mr. Shaji Varghese (Centre for Social Research, Christ College, Bangalore)
Mr. Ashish Rajadhyaksha (Senior fellow, CSCS, Bangalore)

Statement:

Any close analysis of undergraduate education in India presents a field of daunting complexity, often arising from the difficulty in characterizing the field itself. In general however, it might be argued that most attempts at studying this area have tended to privilege curricular questions, giving this particular aspect a greater visibility in most debates in the field. While the curriculum and, by extension, the classroom remain important spaces for exploring and defining pedagogical practices, in recent times a more inclusive definition of undergraduate education has clearly seen the rise of other spaces, both within (if at the margins of), as well as entirely outside, the curriculum. The question, of how such spaces often effectively become means by which both teachers and students practically negotiate established curricular structures and institutional constraints, would be critical to any researcher of undergraduate education.

Two large areas of thought might broadly be identified here: one relating to policy issues, another addressing the more institutional aspects that house, and thereby influence, the actual practice of education. The second area has increasingly been concerned with spaces outside the classroom and even the campus as these spaces are being opened out to extra-curricular activity (such as, for example, programmes and events sponsored by corporate organizations).

In the first set of issues, addressing policy, there have been attempts made to put both primary and undergraduate education and research into a nationalist perspective. The ‘free-and-compulsory’ paradigm, as well as vocational pressures, have tended to develop some well-worn faultlines, including, for instance, the apparent gap between vocational courses and liberal humanist education. In the wake of political and economic developments often described as ‘post-developmentalist’, as private players and indeed even institutions based outside India and competing for the educational market grow, new questions, and new faultlines, clearly arise.

A second set of issues concern the practices of education. While the curriculum continues to be an important aspect of the debate, its institutionalization both in the campus and outside it, and the rise of new spaces impacting ways in which the curriculum is defined, understood and taught, opens a new set of issues requiring debate in itself.

For further information contact Ratheesh R., CSCS


 

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