student profile: Ms Melissa Law


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Thesis work

Thesis title: Is there a cross-cultural perspective of Values and Civics/Citizenship programs at schools? A theoretical consideration of classical Confucian pedagogy for character development in modern education

Supervisors: Anthony WELCH , Timothy ALLENDER

Thesis abstract:

The purpose of my research is to identify and make explicit how teachers teach Value and Civics/Citizenship programs or equivalent programs based on their own cultural values. Specifically, to investigate how three East Asian and three ‘Anglo’ teachers understand and frame values based on the same Values and Civics/Citizenship program in the state school system. Are there residues of Confucian thought and values evident in East-Asian teachers' understanding, that are not there (in the same way) among ‘Anglo’ (or at least non-East-Asian) teachers? In addition, Values education will be discussed alongside “classical Confucian pedagogy” with implications for how these programs can be explicitly taught to increase the Eastern perspective in the multicultural setting of modern education (Wu, 2014). Models of Values and Civic/Citizenship programs being taught in Australia and aboard will be discussed based on current research. Qualitative data will be collected from teachers using semi-structured interviews, surveys and observation. The data will be analysed to show how school teachers are teaching or not teaching Values and Civic/Citizenship programs. A theoretical framework of classical Confucian pedagogy of virtues will be used to analyse Australia’s current model of Values and Civic/Citizenship education. It is argued that classical Confucian pedagogy can provide a theoretical framework for analyzing current Values programs for internal self-development and refinement of character as it can perpetuate all aspects of a person’s career and personal life. This inner attainment of cultivation of values may continue to fuel continuous acquisition of knowledge and skills as it is built on the ethic of self-willed, high engagement in learning for both teachers and students with the practice of reflection towards the goal of self-regulation. The significance of this reasearch will contribute to the understanding of how cultural value can impact lesson delivery of Values education and aid in answering the question of ‘is there a cross-cultural perspective of Values and Civics/Citizenship programs at schools?’�br /�

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