Articulating Undergraduate Spaces
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.
Day 1 (8th August 2002)
am to 11 am
Break ( 3.15 pm to 3.30 pm)
3 ( 10 am to 12.45 pm): Curriculum
Lunch Break (12.45 pm to 2 pm)
4 (2 pm to 3.15 pm): Changing Contours of the Classroom
Tea Break (3.15 pm to 3.30 pm)
5 (3.30 pm to 5 pm): Extra- curricular spaces
Day 3 (10th August 2002)
6 (10 am to 11. 30 am): Extra Campus Spaces
Tea Break (11.30 to 11.45)
7 (11.45 am to 1 pm): Innovative Pedagogical Practices
Lunch Break (1 pm to 2 pm)
8 (1 pm to 3.30 pm): Student Panel
Tea Break (3.30 pm to 3.45 pm)
Remarks and General Discussion: (3.45 pm to 5 pm)
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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