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Spring '10 abstracts

Page history last edited by Luke 10 years, 3 months ago
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DATE: Monday, May 10th, 2010

TITLE: Towards a Manifold Ontology of...er, Units?

Luke Conlin

 

ABSTRACT: Educational researchers have worked with ontologies of mind that differ with respect to the unit of cognition—i.e., the thing that is 'doing the thinking.'  Cognitivists take the cognitive unit to be the mind of the individual, in contrast to theorists who take cognition of the individual to be inseparable from the situation in which it occurs (e.g., De La Rocha, 1985), and even distributed across multiple individuals and artifacts (e.g., Hutchins, 1995).  In this talk, I will argue that researchers from all of these approaches have generally shared a commitment to a static and, well, ‘unitary’ unit of cognitive analysis.  I will further argue that the resources and framing account of cognition affords a dynamic unit of analysis (e.g., Scherr & Hammer, 2009) and therefore has the potential to bridge the divides between cognitivist, situated, and distributed views of cognition.  Finally, I will explore whether committing to a dynamic unit of cognition comes along with a commitment to there being more than one kind of cognitive unit. 

De La Rocha, O. (1985). The reorganization of arithmetic practice in the kitchen. Anthropology & Education Quarterly, 16(3), 193–198.

Hutchins, E. (1995). How a cockpit remembers its speeds. Cognitive Science: A Multidisciplinary Journal, 19(3), 265–288.

Scherr, R. E., & Hammer, D. (2009). Student behavior and epistemological framing: Examples from collaborative active-learning activities in physics. Cognition and Instruction, 27(2), 147–174.

 
 
DATE: Monday, March 1st, 2010
Victoria Winters
Abstract: Responsive curricula provide opportunities for students to pursue personally meaningful investigations in ways that make sense to them. A responsive classroom environment creates a setting for researching nascent abilities and initial ideas as starting points of science rather than obstacles to appropriate canonical understandings and practices. In this presentation, I share data and interpretations of students' inquiry in responsive classroom settings, and I seek feedback on how to make sense of what these students are doing.

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