Designing the Curriculum for Student Engagement
Over the past few years there has been considerable emphasis on the concept of 'student engagement'. However, in a context of mass higher education, increasing diversity of the student population, globalization and the new marketing of education, and increased competition between universities exacerbated by 'league tables', it is problematic to define 'the best learning environment possible for all students. It is also becoming more problematic to articulate the purpose of a university education with so many different agendas to satisfy.
The overarching aim of this paper is to highlight the need to articulate a powerful pedagogical idea which underpins university level education that can act as the driver for sustainable curriculum and institutional change. Engaging students in the learning process and encouraging them to understand the attributes that will enhance their employability in a fast changing chaotic world must be at the core of the powerful pedagogical idea. This paper will explore the idea of student engagement and how it is being conceptualized; examine the ways in which 'engagement' is currently 'measured' and critique different examples of curricular innovations with the intention of identifying the aspects of learning and assessment which 'engage' and challenge the learners.
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