Education - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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The discovery of the “Transcendental Man”: An introduction to the Age of Knowledge by S. Raynaud de la Ferrière and its application in Education

Date created: 
2018-09-25
Abstract: 

I apply R. de la Ferrière’s theory of the Age of Knowledge to explore the current educational terrain. The theory is based on the celestial precession of equinoxes. Civilizations go through great cycles of radical transformation in the religious, cultural, sociological, and psychological aspects of humankind. The new cycle began on March 21, 1948. Currently, humanity is situated in a transitional period moving from a state of believing to a state of knowing. Analysis into monumental societal transformations yields deeper understanding of humanity and can inspire changes in education that incorporate a long-term vision. His pedagogical thought rests on the belief that the most important event in the Age of Knowledge would be the discovery of the transcendent man. He claims that teaching something to a child is not the only important objective; teaching is also to shape a child’s spirit to develop that child’s capacity to observe and reflect, to apply critical thinking in their research, and to love the truth.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Heesoon Bai
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

Leadership durable et relève des directions d’école dans un milieu francophone minoritaire

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-08-03
Abstract: 

Alors que la relève des directions d’école constitue une problématique dans tous les conseils scolaires au Canada, ce travail analyse le discours de diverses directions d’école et de cadres supérieurs au sein d’un conseil scolaire francophone dans une province anglophone quant à leurs rôles, leurs fonctions, leurs tâches et leurs responsabilités. Il cherche également à connaître, sinon esquisser, le profil recherché pour la direction d’école par les dirigeants et les responsables chargés de l’embauche au conseil scolaire dans le contexte du milieu francophone minoritaire. La recherche s’est, en outre, donnée comme objectif d’examiner les pratiques déclarées exercées par les dirigeants au sein du conseil en matière d’embauche des directions d’école ainsi que leur positionnement pour assurer et soutenir la relève des directions. Les propos, recueillis lors d’entretiens semi-dirigés menés individuellement avec chaque participant, ont ainsi permis de cerner différents éléments qui offrent des pistes de réflexion pouvant éclairer la pratique de la relève des directions d’écoles francophones dans un contexte minoritaire et mettre en lumière les rôles et responsabilités de chacun des acteurs scolaires en vue de favoriser le développement d’un plan de relève; laquelle à son tour assurera la durabilité du leadership dans les établissements scolaires francophones. Les participants à cette recherche s’entendent pour dire en effet que la durabilité du leadership scolaire constitue un facteur essentiel pour assurer la pérenité des changements positifs intégrés dans les écoles en vue d’améliorer l’expérience scolaire de tous les acteurs : élèves, personnel, parents, partenaires communautaires, etc. L’analyse des entretiens permet enfin de dégager trois grands besoins: l’identification des candidats aspirant au poste de directions d’école, leur formation durant la transition à leur nouveau rôle et le développement professionnel continu par le biais de pratiques de mentorat et de soutien à la transition. Au final, des recommandations sont proposées afin d’orienter et de guider la planification de la relève des directions d’école dans un contexte francophone minoritaire, dans le but d’attirer, d’une part, des candidats potentiels pour les postes de directions d’école, et d’autre part, d’accompagner les directions d’école en poste dans leur parcours professionnel.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Cécile Sabatier
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ed.D.

A Qualitative Research Study on the Interplays between Plurilingualism and Identity

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-08-14
Abstract: 

The aim of this research study is to provide further insight into the interplays between plurilingualism and identity among first year academic literacy students in university. The participants were from a university located in Metro Vancouver, British Columbia. A qualitative methodology with an interpretivist ethnographic approach was used. I analyzed the data based on the theoretical concepts linking plurilingualism and agency (Coste & Simon, 2009; Marshall & Moore, 2013), multiliteracies and the ways in which identity can be negotiated (Cope & Kalantzis, 2009), discursive practices and their influence on identity (Gee, 2005) and lastly the concepts of identity negotiation and contestation (Blackledge & Pavlenko, 2001; Hall, 1996; Leung, Harris & Rampton, 1997). Participants revealed their perspectives on how they perceived their multi/plurilingualism and how they were able to use their languages across space and time. The participants expressed multiple layers of identity that intersected with ideas of legitimacy, competency, performance and agency in accordance with the physical spaces they occupied.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Marshall Steve
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

A Study of a Teaching and Learning Centre in a Post-Secondary Educational Institution

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-08-13
Abstract: 

The purposes of a Teaching and Learning Centre (TLC) include helping faculty improve their teaching and enhancing students’ learning. The functions of a TLC vary, depending on the needs of the higher education institution. However, it is important for faculty to utilize the services of a TLC to become more effective educators. Using a mixed methods approach, this study examined the faculty awareness level of a TLC, how innovative teaching ideas were being diffused, and how faculty (as clients) view the services offered by a TLC (as a service unit). A convergent design was used to collect data via an online survey and personal interviews. This study focused only on faculty and close to 1,700 faculty were invited to participate in this study. More than 200 faculty responded to the survey and from that pool, fifteen randomly selected faculty were interviewed. All the interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed, and analyzed to uncover themes that emerged from the data. There seemed to be a low faculty awareness level of the TLC within the institution in this study. Faculty felt that the TLC needed to “connect” more with them because there was a lack of marketing of the TLC to present itself more visibly within the institution. There was a concern regarding the lack of diffusion of innovative teaching ideas reported by the majority of interviewed faculty voiced such opinion. It was suggested that more communication channels needed to be used for diffusing new teaching ideas. Also, most faculty felt that there was a need to improve the service quality from the TLC personnel. Results from this study indicated that there was a need for the TLC to improve its communication strategies (e.g., marketing and social media) so that faculty could be better and more frequently informed about the unit. Future research projects may include marketing strategies and service quality of the TLC, as well as the nature of the management support of the unit.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
David Kaufman
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ed.D.

Describing the Canadian post-secondary career centre landscape: An exploratory survey

Date created: 
2018-08-25
Abstract: 

Despite growing interest in post-graduate employment outcomes, limited empirical literature exists about how post-secondary career centres in Canada currently operate. Through a national survey, this study sought to describe the external conditions and the internal organizational factors that influence career centre operations, the philosophical orientations of career centres, the career services offered to various stakeholders, the measures of success that are collected and reported, and the human, financial, and space resources available to operate. The Anglophone survey was designed using a Delphi panel of experts to ensure the comprehensiveness of the questions and tested using a pilot group of local career centre staff. Representatives from 63 career centres across Canada responded to the national survey from a variety of career centre types within university, college, or polytechnic institutional settings. The findings, which reveal the current landscape influencing career centre operations, are generally presented as descriptive statistics including means, medians, ranges, and frequencies. Using Hackman’s (1985) theory of power and centrality in resource allocations as the lens for analysis, the researcher hoped to identify relationships between resources available to career centres and the operational choices that they make. For each of the six themes, the differences in how career centres have responded operationally across geographic region, institutional type, and career centre type were identified using chi-square and analysis of variance methods, providing a rich description of the Canadian post-secondary career centre landscape. Another contribution made by this study includes a framework for determining the centrality of non-academic units using Hackman’s (1985) theory. The primary findings of this study are that career centres should rethink their focus on day-to-day differences and work together toward solutions for providing outstanding career development services for post-secondary students and that it is time to consider setting minimum qualifications for career development professionals in Canada.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Michelle Nilson
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ed.D.

Young adults’ accounts of recovery from youth non-suicidal self-injury: An interpretive phenomenological analysis

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-07-31
Abstract: 

Non-suicidal Self-Injury (NSSI), defined as an intentional act of self-harm or injury, without the intent to die, is a mental health issue with concerningly high prevalence rates and associated negative clinical outcomes for youth, internationally and in Canada. Several theoretical explanations and treatment protocols for NSSI exist and have been the subject of research over the past few decades. According to recent meta-analyses, current available specialized NSSI treatment approaches have only modest success in reliably and consistently facilitating recovery for youth who engage in NSSI. There is currently a need for a more nuanced and workable understanding of the mechanisms and factors that facilitate recovery from adolescent NSSI. This study intended to add to the growing body of phenomenological inquiry into recovery from NSSI, and examined, through in-depth personal accounts, the effective mechanism of change involved in recovery from youth NSSI. Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis, a qualitative method, with established precedence studying personal meaning making of accounts of lived illness experiences, was employed to study the question, “What do youth, who self-identify as having recovered from youth NSSI, understand to have facilitated or made their recovery possible?” Implications for mental health professionals working with self-harming youth are discussed based on analysis of the interview data obtained.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Masahiro Minami
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

Bringing the magic of life: The power of co-constructing digital storytelling with people with dementia

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-08-09
Abstract: 

The number of people living with dementia is continuing to increase. Past research found benefits of digital storytelling for persons with dementia, including enhanced relationships, communication, improved well-being, and social citizenship. My research explored the experience of digital storytelling for people living with early stage dementia as part of a cross-Canada project including three sites: Edmonton, Vancouver and Toronto. The Vancouver research was conducted as my thesis research. In Vancouver, six participants were recruited from retirement residences, a care facility, and the Alzheimer Society of B.C. I met with participants for 6 to 16 sessions to create digital stories. Data collected included observational field notes, audio recordings from the sessions, and interviews that were transcribed and analyzed. The process illuminated the experience of digital storytelling for people living with dementia. Aspects of participant’s experience included creating a legacy, dementia awareness-raising, facilitated reminiscence, engagement in the process of creation, and generativity.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
David Kaufman
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

Connecting, sharing and reshaping life stories: Experiences, benefits, and challenges of older adults in a digital storytelling course

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-07-23
Abstract: 

There is a global demographic shift with older adults increasing in number. With this shift comes many challenges and opportunities. Older adults may benefit from increasing their digital literacy skills, sharing their life experiences through story, and participating in lifelong learning. This thesis evaluates a project that provided these opportunities. The theoretical lens used is a combination of a life course approach, narrative theory, and social constructivist theory. The thesis used a case study approach that examined 15 offerings of a digital storytelling course attended by a total of 98 older adults. Each course ran for 8-10 weeks (two hours once a week). Data collection for the research conducted involved background information (including participant computer skill level), post course evaluation forms, focus groups, and a questionnaire handed out to viewers during a “Sharing our Stories” event. The findings indicated that there were more female participants than male participants and over half of the participants had immigrated to Canada at one point in their lives. There were a range of digital skill levels at the start of the course, with most participants claiming to be beginner or intermediate. Results suggest that most older adults who completed the digital storytelling course reported an increase in digital literacy skills (computer, software, and Internet) and digital storytelling skills. Educationally, the course was also seen to be beneficial as participants suggested they had learned something new, whether from the program, the process, or both. However, sometimes the technology posed a challenge and time constraints were highlighted as being an issue. Participants also reflected on their stories and lives, at times reliving them and reshaping their stories. The artefact created through digitizing a story was considered as a way to connect to future generations and current family. The digital storytelling course appeared to create social connectedness to self and to others (in the past, present, and future). These findings suggest that courses using story and technology and creating a community of learners can be a beneficial approach for older adult learning environments. This thesis research contributes to the field of older adult education and educational technology by providing a deeper understanding of older adult learning with storytelling and technology and the benefits and challenges this provides. It also offers insights into the experiences of older adults within a digital storytelling course and examines the way in which storytelling and multimedia can play a role in lifelong learning.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
The accompanying video is an example of a digital story created by one of the participants in the course.
Supervisor(s): 
David Kaufman
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

Art as a means to locate and disrupt embodied prejudice with emotional sensations on the body: The artful and transformative telling of stories of stigma and HIV.

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-07-11
Abstract: 

This arts-based inquiry investigates how the arts can challenge the embodiment of prejudice and bias by its ability to inspire, through sensations on the body, a transformative empathetic experience in an individual. I located implicit bias through sensation awareness on my body by accessing associated embodied memories and disrupted such bias with the deliberate intervention of art imagery. I then, collaborated with a former dancer living with HIV and followed my felt sensation responses to artfully tell of her experiences with stigma using dance to create two videos that inspire transformative, empathetic sensation responses that disrupt my learned embodied resistances around HIV and help me better understand her experience. Through this research I learned what it means to be an artist researcher in an artistic endeavour of inquiry in the receiving and telling of difficult stories. Engaging through sensation awareness as inquiry, meaning-making and storytelling is an emergent reciprocal process of listening, receiving and offering. Remaining open to receive sensations on my body required that I be attentive to the storyteller throughout the creative process.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Lynn Fels
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

Unforgiveness: An alternative space for people who cannot forgive

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-07-26
Abstract: 

There is a gap in the current instantiations of forgiveness that prevents people who cannot forgive from exploring alternatives beyond the dyad of forgiveness and vengeance. As such, it is imperative to not only recognize the gap, but also to endeavour to create a space whereby those who cannot forgive can assemble alternative responses to harm and wrong-doing. This thesis explores the possibilities of describing such a space of unforgiveness that can become a vector for those who cannot forgive to constitute an alternative to the prevailing injunction to forgive. Forgiveness is fundamentally a moral concern, which, in turn, has implications for moral education. I focus here on the educational possibilities that could emerge for people who cannot forgive. Such possibilities include the recognition of anger and other so-called negative emotions as legitimate and teachable responses to harm and wrong-doing.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Ozlem Sensoy
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.