Reviews

Changing higher education

This book discusses the changes that have occurred over the last 30 years in British higher education (HE) and current and future developments. The editor, Ashwin, begins with an introductory chapter that presents the main themes, provides a clear picture of relevant changes and puts them in context. Additionally, he introduces the three main sections of the book, including an overview of all the chapters. This is particularly useful as it allows the reader to know what to expect, and skip to relevant sections if appropriate.

Apart from the introduction and thought provoking conclusion, the remainder of the book is broken down into three sections: the development of students’ learning in HE, the development of learning technologies in HE and the development of teaching in HE. Contributors include a number of well-known authors from a variety of countries.

The first section includes chapters ranging from discussions about participative assessment and non- traditional learners to postgraduate research students’ learning and the concept of learner centredness. Boud discusses learner centredness using a semi-autobiographical account to describe four learner-centred innovations in learning and teaching, for example, problem-based learning. He uses the examples to illustrate that learner centred means different things to different people, and that these differences can be incompatible and therefore cause contradictions.

The second section contains two chapters about learning technologies. Laurillard looks at the introduction and growth of e-learning. She suggests that e-learning needs to evolve

...

Apart from the introduction and thought provoking conclusion, the remainder of the book is broken down into three sections: the development of students’ learning in HE, the development of learning technologies in HE and the development of teaching in HE. Contributors include a number of well-known authors from a variety of countries.

The first section includes chapters ranging from discussions about participative assessment and non- traditional learners to postgraduate research students’ learning and the concept of learner centredness. Boud discusses learner centredness using a semi-autobiographical account to describe four learner-centred innovations in learning and teaching, for example, problem-based learning. He uses the examples to illustrate that learner centred means different things to different people, and that these differences can be incompatible and therefore cause contradictions.

The second section contains two chapters about learning technologies. Laurillard looks at the introduction and growth of e-learning. She suggests that e-learning needs to evolve with the educational change process if it is to improve HE. McConnell addresses various theoretical and practical issues which should be considered when introducing e-learning. He particularly focuses on the importance of fostering collaboration in all learning including e-learning.

The final section includes two chapters about the development of teaching in HE. Beaty discusses the accreditation of teaching in HE, a topic which is touched on in previous chapters. She examines the history of teacher accreditation in the UK and concludes with a brief discussion about the international picture. Stefani discusses the importance of the scholarship of teaching, starting by defining what it means, investigating various views and developments and concluding with a discussion of how the scholarship of teaching can be encouraged.

This book is well-constructed and interesting. Rather than concentrating on one discipline, instead it gives a wide range of information that is applicable to all disciplines in HE, including nursing.

Want to read more?

Subscribe for unlimited access

Enjoy 1 month's access for £1 and get:

  • Full access to nursing standard.com and the Nursing Standard app
  • Monthly digital edition
  • RCNi Portfolio and interactive CPD quizzes
  • RCNi Learning with 200+ evidence-based modules
  • 10 articles a month from any other RCNi journal

This article is not available as part of an institutional subscription. Why is this?