Professor Anthony Bryk : Master Class and Public Lecture in Bristol 21st May 2014

Prof Tony Bryk (President of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching).  He will be providing a one day masterclass, followed by a public lecture on the Design-Educational Engineering and Development (DEED) approach to school improvement. This work has inspired several projects in the UK including a study into student engagement in Oasis Academy John Williams 

Tony Bryk masterclass

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Professor Tony Bryk

Tony Bryk was a leading figure in the Consortium on Tony BrykChicago School Research (CSSR).  Over twenty years they developed a theoretical and empirical framework which is holistic, participatory and based on understanding that “schools are complex organisations consisting of multiple interacting sub-systems. Each subsystem involves a mix of human and social factors that shape the activities that occur and the meaning that individuals attribute to these events. These social interactions are bounded by various rules, roles and prevailing practices that, in combination with technical resources, constitute schools as formal organisations. In a simple sense, almost everything interacts with everything else”.  (2010: 45). Bryk et al went on to identify essential school supports – agents, processes and structures – which were characteristic of improving schools, as measured by student engagement in learning and achievement.  Each of these supports, stimulated by leadership, focus on dynamic processes of change and learning and need to be implemented tenaciously and attended to as a whole. They provide an explanation of how the organisation and relational dynamics of a school, including parents and community, interact with work inside its classrooms to advance student learning.  Professor Tony Bryk Summary

Professor Bryk’s work in Design Educational Engineering and Development as a framework for sustainable improvement in schools has inspired the Hampshire Teaching Schools Alliance in their project ‘Deep Learning Across Transitions’.

As well as the Master Class Professor Bryk will be doing two public lectures one in Bristol on Wednesday 21st May 2014 17:00 – 1900: University of Bristol Bryk public lecture and one at the University of Winchester on Thursday 22nd May 2014 1700-1900, at the Stripe Auditorium: University of Winchester Bryk public lecture

To book for Bristolhttp://bristol.ac.uk/education/events/2014/1031.html

More information can be viewed here

To book for Winchester contact Rhona Rogers at Pioneer.alliance@harrison.hants.sch.uk 

Tony Bryk final

Research Metro Map

At the Festival of Postgraduate Research event held on Friday 21/02/2014 at Bristol, we presented a metro map of our research interests.

Not surprisingly there was a great deal of overlap in our research areas – which has been plotted on the metro map. Although it provided visitors to our stall with a great overview of our research interests, it was more important to us, as a research centre, to see the relationships between us.  What was interesting was being able to observe the emergence of a dialogue as we looked at the map on the day, not only in terms of shared interests but in the potential links.

metromap

We intend to continue the discussion to develop this map further in our seminar series over the next few months.

Copies of our individual research posters can be in the blog post Bristol Festival of Postgraduate Research 

 

 

 

Complexity, modelling and infrastructure futures: embedding learning in future business models

Professor Brian Collins is leading a multi-institutional research project the ‘International Centre for Infrastructure Futures’. A team from the University of Bristol is leading on the ‘learning framework’ for the business models which will enable us to learn from the projects and from each other. Here, Professor Brian Collins introduces the project and the challenges we face.

The deficiencies of our traditional, fragmented, sectoral approach to infrastructure creation and management are becoming more apparent as poorly appreciated interdependencies make infrastructures vulnerable to service disruptions and cascade failures. These lead to capacity limitations, inefficiencies, poor reliability, low adaptability and missed opportunities, which are further exacerbated by poor data and information about interdependencies in and between sectors at the organisational, commercial and policy levels. The resulting disjointed approaches to governance and policy create perverse incentives and conflicting actions, which then stifle collaborative innovation. ICIF is a new way of bringing together the stakeholders involved in renewing the UK’s infrastructure to exploit multidisciplinary, systemic thinking about infrastructure interdependencies when developing the novel business models needed to address future challenges. The Centre will develop a principled and generic learning process for creating innovative, performance based business models to exploit infrastructure interdependencies. For Professor Collins recent keynote at INCOSE follow this link.

2013 SCLL Seminar Series: Leadership, Learning and Social Justice

We are kicking off the new seminar series in style with two Visiting Professors, John West-Burnham and Howard Green both members of the Centre for Systems Learning and Leadership.

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GRADUATE SCHOOL OF EDUCATION
35 BERKELEY SQUARE, BRISTOL
30th October 2013,  1700-1830    

This seminar will explore the issues and implications of seeing education, and leadership in education, as key protagonists in the search for social justice and equity as essential elements of democratic society.

The central question is “To what extent is it the role of educators to become socially active in addressing issues of social disadvantage and working to ameliorate the negative influence of a divided and divisive society?”howardphoto1

The seminar will start with the exchange of ideas relating to the nature of social justice, equity in society and the moral and professional duty of leaders. The facilitators will then offer perspectives on social justice in practice at local, national and international levels.

One of the emerging themes to be explored is the model of leadership that emerges from seeing schools as agents of social change and a means of securing equity and extending democracy.

Hampshire Teaching Schools Alliance: Becoming Research Teachers focused on improving Deep Learning Across Transitions

Screen Shot 2013-10-06 at 18.40.50The Hampshire Teaching Schools Alliance has formed a Networked Improvement Community with structured social arrangements which joins academic research, clinical practice and commercial expertise in sustained programmes of Design Educational Engineering and Development (Bryk et al 2010).  This is an approach to improvement which is being developed in education by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teacher Education

Pioneer Teaching School AllianceIt  offers a productive synthesis across the research-practice divide. It aims to meld the conceptual strength and methodological norms associated with traditional research  with the contextual specificity, deep clinical insight and practical orientation characteristic of action research.

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Participants in a Networked Improvement Community endorse shared, precise, measureable targets which achieve a shared purpose.  They address shared,complex problems and participate in whole systems designing processes aimed at clarifying the problem/challenge/solution space. On the basis of rich data from this process they design interventions which may lead to improvement.  These interventions are rapidly prototyped, and  participants agree to use what is learned from working toward meeting the targets, to setting new targets aimed at ever more ambitious goals. In this regard, shared measureable targets help a community stay focused on its core purpose, from the community’s perspective. They catalyze discussions among participants as to why we should attend to this rather than that. They demand about what is likely to afford more immediate progress.  They introduce discipline in priority setting as it interacts with the individualistic rhetoric of “I am interested in…”

The problem identified in the HTSA NIC is the problem of student progress in learning and achievement across key transitions.

Our shared understanding of the problem we are seeking to address is that we lack a common approach to teaching, learning and assessment across transitions. Specifically we tend to:nsitions in education. Throughout 2012/13 academic year, as well as setting in place the social arrangements, they have engaged in a systems analysis of the problem. This is presented in the first diagram below, Problem Solution Space. From here the potential solutions were identified in the second diagram: Driver Diagram.

  • create dependent learners
  • lack a shared language and repertoire of learning routines & practices
  • lack pro-active and shared rich student academic & learning assessment data
  • lack trust between teachers in different contexts
  • are influenced by anxiety about performance criteria

Our shared hypothesis:

If we focus on a common approach to developing self-directed learning and knowledge construction for students across the transitions then we will enable students to maintain progress in learning and performance because they will carry this competence into their new context, which will have key pedagogical characteristics in common with the one they have left.

Our shared purpose is: 

To design and implement approaches to teaching and learning which facilitate deep & self-directed learning in students which they carry across the transition, which is recognised and supported in the new context, and which leads to sustained progress and improved attainment.

In order to do this, our initial focus is on teacher professional learning – how we work together, harness our collective intelligence and learn across the Alliance. We work creatively within a common, disciplined framework with shared design principles.

Design Principles

(Key practices which are (i) disciplined and pervasive characteristics of our shared approach to pedagogy, (ii) evidence based and (iii) communicated to our communities in many different ways)

Developing Deep & Self-Directed Learning through

  • a shared language for learning and knowledge construction
  • a common approach to teaching as learning design
  • a common set of assessment strategies – using rich data
  • a common set of values which pervade the learning environments
  • authentic pedagogy for deep engagement

Project Methodology

A shared question  & a context specific response

#Each Project will make a unique contribution to addressing the question of what type of pedagogical practices  contribute to the development of deep and self-directed learning across the transition.

Who will we work with?

Each project team works collaboratively with a year group before and after the transition (for example year 5 and year 7)  using the rapid prototype methodology based on the Plan Do Study Act cycle.

A rapid prototype is a short, small project (24 weeks) designed and implemented by the teacher/researchers following the Plan, Do, Study, Act cycle. It addresses all or some of the project’s shared design principles but in a way which is appropriate for that particular context. It is evaluated locally – and using disciplined metrics which are agreed by the whole group. Eventually the project will harvest the learning from all the prototypes, which can be scaled up across the communities.

There will be two prototypes, one between December and March and the second between April and June. The second one is improved in the light of the evaluation of the first one.  Each project team is responsible for designing and implementing their own research project, including data collection and analysis methods and presentation of findings.  Two project workshops will provide a collaborative learning event for each cycle where each group presents their findings – what works, and key concepts.  These will be synthesised & shared for improvements in the next prototypes.

Each prototype will contribute its learning to the whole via the Evidence Hub in the form of stories of significant change, videos, etc.  Each project will have an academic critical friend from a local University. Each project will adopt the Ten Up methodology across the cohort.  From the target year group, focus on 10 students to study in depth as case studies for professional learning, whilst the whole year group benefits from the intervention.  These students could also provide case studies for students in the partner HEIs who need data and can add value.

Overall Disciplined Evaluation Framework

Each project will commit to working with the shared, disciplined evaluation framework for the whole project.  As well as contributing equally to the whole project systems designing and solutions space, they will agreed to collect and provide data which will be used to evaluate the project as a whole, over the four year lifecyle.  This whole project data is designed to measure the target outcome which is ‘student self-directed learners’ and the relationship between this outcome measure and student progress across transitions. It will also enable the project to idenfity a ‘control group’ in another teaching schools alliance elsewhere in the UK if appropriate, which is not addressing the problem of transitions in this way.

Learning to Achieve  is a handbook for teachers who want to understand more about implementing learning power.