Fawcett Fellowship Research Questionnaire - your help is requested


Thanks to those colleagues who helped.

I'm proud to have been a UCL-IOE Fawcett Fellow for this academic year, working with others to explore curriculum thinking and epistemic quality in the curriculum.

In 1987 Edith Fawcett endowed annual Fellowships in the Department of Geography at UCL in memory of her father, Professor C B Fawcett, who was head of the department between 1928 and 1949. The Fellowships were originally designed to enable UK-based teachers and other professional geographers in mid-career to spend a sabbatical term studying at UCL. The teaching Fellows continued to be paid their full salary and the scheme funded replacement geography teaching. This has now been opened up to a second model, where regular meetings are held across a year. 

This year's group of fellows has had regular meetings at UCL, and discussions about curriculum, curriculum making and the influences which shape our professional practice. We have been discussing our decisions over what to teach, how to sequence it, and how to assess it. We have been using a number of books for inspiration, which have included the excellent David Gardner book published by the GA and others, including Alex Standish. We are drawn from different stages of our careers and different school contexts. It's been fascinating to learn from the other fellows, and I have a bulging notebook of notes and documents. We also have an input from Dr. Alex Standish during each session, and are also encouraged to follow up the Fellowship by applying for Masters level study.

We are now reaching the final stage of the year, and writing up our research and thinking. I've now got ethics clearance to launch the questionnaire which will inform the final part of my work and writing. The questionnaire is linked to and also embedded below.

This questionnaire is aimed at teachers who teach GEOGRAPHY, and refers to these lessons specifically. You don't have to be a full time Geography teacher to get involved. All responses are anonymous and may be referenced in a chapter for a forthcoming publication on curriculum thinking in geography. 

The aim of my Fawcett Fellowship is to research the impact of "everyday geographies" and how these are unpicked and taught by individual schools. My GA Presidential theme for 2021-22 was Everyday Geographies, and an exploration of the quotidian. 
As significant local / national / global news stories and related content (such as images and videos on social media accounts) appear, I'm keen to discover  how  you, as geography  teachers, react  to them and make time for them. 
This is particularly aimed at KS3 Geography teachers, but KS2 teachers would also be welcome to respond.

At  what point might these news stories prove weighty enough to displace other content in your curriculum and earn a place in your curriculum for the next few years, and what thought is given to the longevity of these stories placed against topics which form a stronger foundation for GCSE courses as they appear in the specification?  How are these stories combined with existing curriculum content, or used to displace previous case studies? Is thought given to how this might create an imbalance in the parts of the world covered, or the extent to which this reinforces partial views of the world?

Is there a tendency for these topics to skew curriculum offerings away from ‘physical geography’ or what might be considered important disciplinary knowledge because of their nature? Are more news stories likely to be what might be termed 'human' or 'environmental geography'?

I'd be interested in your thoughts on the questions below. 
Please provide as much detail as you are happy to provide.

You can fill in the survey on the embedded form below, or by clicking this link.

I am very grateful for any and all contributions.

If you want to let me know more thoughts, feel free to add a comment on the blogpost below, or DM me on Twitter: @GeoBlogs.

The application process for next year's Fawcett Fellowship will be open shortly, and I shall let you know all the details as soon as they are available.


Popular posts from this blog

Jonathan Meades on Sustainability

On the trail of the 'Detectorists'