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Title: Difficulty and challenge in curriculum, teaching and learning : a contribution to pedagogy, using insights from in-school and out-of-school education of gifted and talented pupils
Author: Lambert, Mike
ISNI:       0000 0004 2691 3537
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2009
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This study examines the concept of ‘difficulty and challenge’ in curriculum, teaching and learning of young learners. It draws its data from the inschool and out-of-school experiences and perspectives of high-attaining, ‘gifted and talented’ pupils, mainly of late primary-school and early secondary-school age, and from their educators. The study is based on a largely interpretative paradigm and draws from ideas of grounded theory. It treats with caution the notion that such a study will produce a ‘theory’, as advocated in much of the grounded-theory literature, setting out instead to produce a ‘persuasive perspective’ on its theme. Data are largely qualitative in nature, analysed through coding and grouping of principal concepts and sub-themes. Some quantitative data are used to substantiate the analysis. The investigation’s sources of data were decided upon as the study progressed in response to the growing conceptualisation of its theme. Its beginnings were with pupils in out-of-school ‘Advanced Learning Centres’ (ALCs) for gifted and talented pupils, progressing to gifted and talented pupils and their teachers in primary schools, then to summer schools organised for older pupils by the National Academy of Gifted and Talented Youth. Finally, specialist teachers and initial teacher-training tutors provided more in-depth consideration of the topic. Data came from a survey of ALC pupils across England, from observations of classroom practice using a specially designed observation framework, and from group and individual interviews. Using the data, a visual configuration of difficulty and challenge is constructed in the study, and a glossary of key terms and their definitions is built up in stages. The implications of these outcomes for educational practice are considered. The study contributes to pedagogical understanding and development of this important aspect of the teaching and learning of gifted and talented pupils and informs pedagogical thinking relating to all learners.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: University of Wolverhampton. School of Education
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: LB Theory and practice of education