Deakin University

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Collaborative reflective experience and practice in education explored through self-study and arts-based research

Version 2 2024-06-03, 21:44
Version 1 2016-10-28, 08:28
journal contribution
posted on 2024-06-03, 21:44 authored by Shelley HanniganShelley Hannigan, Jo RaphaelJo Raphael, Peta WhitePeta White, LA Bragg, John Cripps ClarkJohn Cripps Clark
Eight teacher educators used self-study methodology to engage in reflective practice to overcome their isolation as individual teachers and researchers, and to facilitate professional development. Their research question asked: How can we continue to develop our teaching practice to ensure we are high quality, contemporary teacher educators? They contributed collaboratively in one overarching research project as well as through several focussed projects that explored issues in their individual teaching practices including: sustainability, creativity, curriculum design, pedagogy, assessment, and the learning experiences for students. This paper explores the outcomes from collaborative inquiry that five of the eight educator/researchers engaged in during a research-writing retreat. It documents their experience using arts-based strategies in which drawings were created about their experiences of engaging in a collaborative project and smaller focussed self-study projects. Analysis involved inquiring into each other’s drawings through recorded conversation. The metaphoric representations found through analysing the drawings provided insight into participants’ teaching practices and identities as teacher educators. Six months later when the participants had developed their projects further and used other artsbased methods to understand these experiences, they reflected on the key issues for their teaching practices that had arisen from undertaking this Collaborative Reflective Experience and Practice in Education research. Arts-based inquiries and reflective analysis over six months, constitute this paper. The experiences and analyses are shared to show how creating and sharing metaphoric meaning of visual representations is useful in self-study research to drill down into the real issues. Importantly, this in-depth sharing provides authentic interdisciplinary links when individual educators share their own approaches to teaching in their disciplined area. Findings suggest that gaining new insights into each other’s discipline-based approaches to teacher education through these methods, revealed different responses to pedagogical challenges and allowed for new possibilities for understanding the landscape of teacher education.



Creative approaches to research






Melbourne, Vic.





Publication classification

C Journal article, C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2016, Creative Approaches to Research




RMIT Publications