Monday 13th is the start of our 12 week term at BAPP. Last week we had some discussion group skype chats and generally got back into our Inquiring Selves. We had two Coffee shop Discussion Group chats.
On Monday 6th in the morning we discussed connecting ideas and mapping how things fit into a bigger picture .
On Tuesday 7th in the afternoon we discussed getting started, scheduling and library access.
Across both discussion the idea of Literature Reviews came up again and again.
I have noticed in the past that people start talking about the start of the module as if it was the start of a treasure hunt. As if you are looking for clues for things you have to find to be told what to write so you can pass. People have talked about the module as if they were on their own having to invent or forage for any information they can get to know what the key is to passing.
For instance often people reflect by saying “I came across an article by Gill Jones that said…” = this gives the impression you happen to find something.
Instead this should read “Gill Jones (2009) suggests that…” = you did the research and you know what you are talking about.
You don’t need to invent answers or hunt for someone who can tell you what to think so you can write it down and pass. Many people before you have thought about similar subjects. They have thought about things, raised questions, explored ways to look at the subject and mapped how their thinking fits with other people who have done the same thing. It is not about the luck of ‘coming across’ something it is about looking up key words and seeing what people have said or choreographed or created in order to better understand your own experiences. So not looking for articles that say what you think already BUT looking at what people have said about a topic that is new to you that expands your understanding of it. In other words it’s not a treasure hunt for evidence you are right about something. It is an inquiry into how what you have thought and experienced fits with other people’s thoughts and experiences. That is a literature review.
A literature review gives context to an idea because you look at many peoples ‘take’ on the idea.
It can help you connect ideas in new ways seeing how other people have made connections. It can give you structure helping you find out the areas within a topic that other people have noticed or organised into.
It can help you challenge your assumptions.
It gives you a range of perspectives, so it is not just the loudest voice is right. Or the highest hit on Google is the authority on something.
It is about you having considered knowledge about things because you have thought about a lot of other people’s ideas in relation to your own.
Also think about this: just because it is the first time you have heard something does not mean it is the first time it has been told to you. Someone with the answer is not always someone amazingly wise, often it is someone who told you something at the right moment for you to hear it. So it is not just about what people say it is about how meaningful you allow it to be.
Getting started back into things, connecting with people, and many of the other points we discussed we talked about all seemed to be about looking beyond your panic for the loudest voice to tell you what to do to get 100%. Instead this is about respectfully listening and contributing to debate. Start looking at the MDX library on-line where you can use Summon to explore journals and books. Visit each others blog and start discussions there. Not “can anyone tell me how to start Module Two?” but “I just finished reading Jenny Gladsons’s book (Maths in the Magic of Dance, 2017) about dancers in North Carolina who have used dance to develop a math curriculum for Kindergarteners, I had not thought about how closely dance and maths are linked. I am interested in other people’s experiences with arts in school?...”
Other people have posts about our discussions on Monday and Tuesday. Have a look at their links. Have a look at what they say and please leave comments on the post you read. Please comment here too.
Please leave a message on these comments with a book or choreography that you have found interesting as you are studing and say why.