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The general and the particular: Theory of science as a resource for PhD-candidates’ meta cognitive reflections in peer response on project-plans

Konferensbidrag (offentliggjort, men ej förlagsutgivet)
Författare Dick Kasperowski
Anna Karlsson Bengtsson
Publicerad i Högskolepedagogisk konferens i Göteborg (HKG 2019), 24 Oktober 2019, Abstracts
Förlagsort Göteborg
Publiceringsår 2019
Publicerad vid Institutionen för filosofi, lingvistik och vetenskapsteori
Språk en
Länkar https://pil.gu.se/hkg2019
Ämnesord PhD-training, meta cognitive reflection, peer response, theory of science
Ämneskategorier Utbildningsvetenskap, Annan medicin och hälsovetenskap, Vetenskapsteori


This presentation reports from ongoing research exploring PhD-students use of theory of science in meta cognitive reflections in peer response on their planned research for the PhD-exam. This exploration is theoretically informed by the taxonomies of Bloom (1956), identifying different categories of knowledge and the processes of learning foregoing them. Studies operationalising Blooms extensive and detailed classification system are quite have identified goals for dimensions of learning, such as factual, conceptual and procedural knowledge. Such dimensions are anchored in the specific disciplines, but general theory of science as delivered in courses at the PhD-level both transcends the specific discipline, but also has to be anchored in it - and this is usually the task of PhD-students to achieve, fulfilling the goals of the course. The pedagogical interest in PhD-education, however, seems to be foremost concerned with different aspects of supervision encompassing how doctoral students and their supervisors regard their relationship in terms of learning outcomes. For this study we are concentrating on written course material and the PhD-candidates use of resources in the theory of science, in their reflections on their own plans for research as well as in peer response, giving comments on their fellow PhD-candidates. Higher education research does not give clear advice for how pedagogical work should be conducted to attain meta cognitive reflection among PhD-students. Such goals might be well formulated from the perspective of teachers, written down in course plans and syllabuses. To inform the conceptualization of reflection as something that takes place when PhD-candidates are, relating to their planned research in new ways, we include in our theoretical perspective “expressive goals”. Such goals are formulated ”on the go” in the seminar, lecture or, possibly, in PhD-candidates’ reflections on their research plans. The structure and goal of a specific course can thus be actualised by the PhD-candidates themselves, maybe more or less diverging from the goals defined by the designers of the course. Thus, there might be a discrepancy between the goals of the course designers and reflections as expressed by PhD-candidates. A convenience sample of 30 texts produced by PhD-students have been subject to a content analysis, yielding four themes of meta cognitive reflection; Transgressing boundaries, Disagreeing and agreeing, Displaying ideal and Putting in perspective.

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