NEXTEUK conference: the impact of Brexit and Covid-19 on teaching

In my short introduction to this roudtable about the impact of Brexit and Covid-19 on teaching I share the following observations:

Like any change, Brexit and Covid-19 can be perceived as threat and disruptive or as enriching opportunity

Both, Brexit and Covid-19, pull politics to the surface in all kinds of areas. For teaching in terms of getting students interested, motivated and connecting key concepts with the world that the care about it is an opportunity.

In my view, the current 2020 situation should remind us as educators of 3 things:

  1. The added value of thinking academically; disagreement is key but also active listening and the will to understand the other;
  2. Equipping our students with the tools to make sense of the world: Critical thinking so key but means more than criticising; Should ensure our students understand the difference between data, information and knowledge aka check your sources; But also in a complex world it needs multidisciplinary approaches to understand;
  3. Learning needs to be uncomfortable, but also very careful handling when it includes subjective experiences. How to balance objective expertise as academic, with subjective interpretations of direct effect; objective analysis, subjective interpretations – how much room is there/should there be?

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