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Students' experiences of threshold capability development with intensive mode teaching


Male, S and Alam, F and Baillie, C and Crispin, S and Hancock, P and Leggoe, J and MacNish, C and Ranmuthugala, D, Students' experiences of threshold capability development with intensive mode teaching, Research and Development in Higher Education: The Shape of Higher Education (Proceedings of the 39th Annual Conference of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia), 4-7 July 2016, Fremantle, Australia, pp. 192-201. ISBN 978-0-9945546-2-8 (2016) [Refereed Conference Paper]


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Copyright 2016 The Authors

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This study focuses on the student experience of passing through critical transformatory thresholds, facilitated by intensive mode teaching. Intensive mode teaching (IMT) involves students engaging in facilitated learning activities or classes over longer periods each day, and over fewer days than is traditional in the discipline. Threshold concept theory and the related threshold capability theory provide a particularly appropriate theoretical basis from which to study the transformation of studentsí learning in this mode. Threshold concepts are assumed to be transformative for students because they open new ways of thinking and knowing. With threshold capabilities students can apply threshold concepts to respond to previously unseen problems. Threshold capabilities are necessary for future learning or practice in a discipline and must be central to curriculum design. As IMT is becoming increasingly popular it is important to ensure that studentsí experience of learning with IMT is optimal. We investigated studentsí experiences of threshold capability in eight intensive mode units at four universities, including undergraduate and postgraduate units in business and engineering. The approach included an exploratory phase with students and teaching team members, rationalisation, and surveys based on identified themes. Studentsí responses revealed that their experiences of threshold capabilities were not always as intended by academics. In some units, concepts that were not central occupied time that students could not readily afford. Students reported that factors that helped their learning included extended in-class discussion and group activities. The opportunity to ask questions was significantly more important to learning in intensive than other modes.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Conference Paper
Keywords:intensive mode teaching, threshold concepts, threshold capabilties
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Education systems
Research Field:Higher education
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Learner and learning
Objective Field:Learner and learning not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Crispin, S (Professor Stuart Crispin)
UTAS Author:Ranmuthugala, D (Professor Dev Ranmuthugala)
ID Code:114968
Year Published:2016
Deposited By:NC Maritime Engineering and Hydrodynamics
Deposited On:2017-03-03
Last Modified:2019-09-18
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