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

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The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on B.C. secondary school students’ schooling experience: A survey inquiry and thought experiment

Date created: 
2021-12-03
Abstract: 

Attending school in-person in the year 2020-2021 was a different experience for many secondary school students in British Columbia. Safety measures such as mask-wearing and reduced interpersonal interaction were introduced nationwide. I conducted exploratory research to understand B.C. secondary school students’ in-person schooling experience in this survey study. Survey items in this present study investigated the impact of COVID-19 at school and students’ perceptions of school climate. In addition, I included a thought experiment where participants were randomly assigned to improved COVID-19 scenario or worsened COVID-19 scenario and asked to think about how their perceptions of school climate might change in response to the assigned scenario. The result of the present study showed about half of the participants worried about getting COVID-19 while they are at school, and almost all participants reported attending school in person felt different this year and preferred that school go back to the way it was before the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, there was a small but statistically detectable correlation (r77 = -.29, p = .01) between participants’ perceptions of the impact of COVID-19 at school and their perceptions of school climate. Furthermore, based on the results of the thought experiment, the COVID-19 progression on participants’ perceptions of school climate appeared to have a greater impact on students’ perceptions of peer relationships than student-teacher relationships. In conclusion, this rapid survey during the COVID-19 pandemic provided timely feedback and opinions from students about their in-person schooling experience during this unusual year.

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

The Raven knows my name: Contemplation and practice on an off-grid island

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-08-04
Abstract: 

Students often confront grief, anxiety, and despair as they learn about ecological decline and their complicity in a deleterious system. Ecological grief afflicts students even as the world requires much of them by way of action and reform. However, the middle and upper-class in modern Western societies, accustomed to comfort and consumption, often find it hard to diminish their ecological impact. This dissertation explores the following question: How do we do what we are not inclined to do even as we suffer from ecological grief? Informed by Zen tradition and practice, the author explores contemplation as a way of dealing with ecological pain. Working through Pierre Bourdieu’s theory of habitus, the suite of ruling dispositions shaped by practice, the author examines how inclinations are shaped by everyday activities. The research project involves a ten-and-a-half-month retreat on an off-grid island on the West Coast of British Columbia. Using a combination of contemplative practice, phenomenological inquiry and portraiture, the author documents the disruptions to his urban habitus, the practices related to living in a wild place, and how such practices are relevant to educators aiming to promote dispositions that cohere with a more ecologically sound way of life. Through stories and reflections from each season, the author relates experiences of living in the woods and interprets their significance to environmental education. Significant themes include: embodiment, awareness, water, askesis, time, and contemplation. The author also describes discontinuities and adjustments upon his return to the city and elaborates on their significance in relation to ecological grief and habitus. The last chapter explores the dimensions of ecological grief and suggests approaches to working with anxieties, ambivalences, and aspirations associated with the ecological decline. This study presents an analysis of the various dimensions of practice and suggests profiles of practice to help reshape existing dispositions.

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

Balkanization of identity: Rebuilding fragmented identities through narratives

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-05-25
Abstract: 

Despite extensive research on the politics of war and Yugoslav refugees during the civil war, there has been scant research on identity building in their children. I present the term, “balkanization of identity” to conceptualize experiences of 1.5 generation Balkan women in diaspora. This describes the fragmentation of identity through violence and/or trauma. In this population, this primarily occurs through transgenerational trauma, patriarchal violence, and migration. Women have long been silenced in collective narratives and national identity-building in the Balkans. Yugoslav feminists have used the re-appropriation of gendered oral traditions as resistance against patriarchal violence. Following their tradition and that of narrative therapy, narrative inquiry was used as a methodology. Transcription was guided by the feminist methodology, the Listening Guide, and data analysis followed the Thematic Content Analysis Method. Findings suggest that for this population, identity is relational and transgenerational, rooted in history and politics, and dynamic and uncertain.

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

An exploration of mother’s beliefs and parenting behaviours surrounding adolescent substance use and impaired driving

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-05-21
Abstract: 

There is pressing need to manage adolescent substance use to prevent impaired driving. Adolescent impaired driving is more common than imagined and is damaging to the health of Canadians and the economy. Parenting is argued to be the most promising prevention strategy available. In this qualitative study, I explored four mother’s beliefs and self-reported parenting behaviours surrounding adolescent substance use and impaired driving. The data revealed that mother’s beliefs about the nature of adolescence as a developmental period contextualize their responses to their adolescent’s substance use. Specifically, mother’s beliefs regarding adolescence as a period of exploration, questionable decision-making, and the need for autonomy appeared to relate to the parenting behaviours of communication, monitoring, and the use of consequences, respectively. Case evidence, in the context of the literature, is presented to illustrate how these parent behaviours may shape their children’s experiences of substance use and the likelihood of impaired driving.

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

Where teachers teach: Portraits of arts educators and their classrooms

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-04-21
Abstract: 

As an Arts based educator, I am particularly interested in exploring Arts classrooms. Places tailored for teaching the Arts are so unique—they are unlike regular classrooms that have no specific purpose other than teaching students. I am so inspired when I enter pedagogically invigorating environments that educators create for their students; I feel their creativity and the excitement all around the room. Such creative potential. For this inquiry, I explored an array of Arts areas: Visual Arts, Music, Drama, Creative Writing, and Dance. Each have somewhat predictable attributes that pertain to the medium, but each hold their own individual personalities. Although the rooms themselves were radically different, each radiated the heart and dedication of the educator, each space came to signify the educator’s commitment to learning. My thesis is a series of portraits of arts teachers, their classrooms, and our encounters.

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

Serious learning: Older adults in university continuing education

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-06-07
Abstract: 

Non-credit programs for older adults have had a peripheral but growing role in Canadian universities since the 1970s (Ratsoy, 2016; Findsen & Formosa, 2011). As the population ages, interest in such programs is increasing, but they remain relatively neglected in research (Findsen, 2018; Kops, 2017; Snyder & Taylor, 2012). Adding to the literature that takes older adult learning more seriously, this case study describes in depth the experience of learners in a continuing studies program for older adults in a Canadian university, anonymized as the “Seniors Program.” Through critical reflexivity and narrative inquiry, using insight from my perspective as a member of the Seniors Program’s administrative team, I tell a story of the program which includes: the problem of exclusion of so many from older adult learning at university; the persistence of older paradigms of learning; the contrast between passively accepting facts and actively exploring mystery as a learner; the question of whether older adult learners in general are significantly different from younger; and ageism and issues of gender. To illustrate these themes, I describe a specific initiative in the Seniors Program, the introduction of courses and events exploring end-of-life issues. I address the unacknowledged complexities of older adult learning, and the potential and challenges of programs for older adult learners in university settings.

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

Le discours des enseignants d'immersion française en Colombie-Britannique sur l'intégration des perspectives autochtones dans leur pratique

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-06-30
Abstract: 

Integrating Indigenous perspectives in British Columbia is a requirement for teacher education programs as well as in the K-12 school programs. This doctoral research aims to study the successes and challenges of integrating Indigenous perspectives specifically for French immersion teachers in the K-12 programs. Very little research has focused on the integration of Indigenous perspectives in French immersion programs in Canada. In British Columbia, in particular, there has been no research on this topic. In this qualitative multiple case-study research, semi-structured interviews were conducted with six French immersion teachers. The theoretical framework informing this research is based on the following field of studies : White supremacy and privilege studies in the context of settler colonialism; antiracist education; curriculum studies and decolonization. For presenting this research, we chose a manuscript-based format thesis that includes three publications (Côté, 2019a, Côté, 2019b, Côté, submitted). First, the lack of research done in French is explored on two distinct levels: (1) decolonization, settler colonialism and White supremacy, and (2) the integration of Indigenous perspectives in the preservice teacher education program as well as in the K-12 school programs. Second, the similar challenges encountered by both French and English teachers are explored. Also, two challenges unique to the French immersion program are briefly presented.

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

The power of discourse in high school adapted science with English language learning students

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-04-19
Abstract: 

The significance of teacher and student interactions in classrooms as a means of enacting curricula, analyzing learning gains and embedding classrooms into broader societal power relations needs to be emphasized. In the context of science classes with English language learners (ELLs) in Canadian high schools, language learning and content learning goals are intertwined. In this study, I focused on the question of how I can help ELLs master science literacy, ommunicative literacies, and knowledge-based critical reasoning skills without simplifying the curriculum. I designed and delivered lessons for an adapted (transitional) science class of fourteen grade 10 ELLs over two semesters. I video-recorded all class activities and analyzed the data using the Communicative Approach framework, the Genre Egg framework, the Cognitive Discourse Functions construct, the 5R Instructional Model, and the Teacher Language Awareness construct. My data showed that adopting pedagogical practices via dialogic discursive interactions that create room for different points of view benefited ELLs in acquiring academic literacy. Furthermore, language accommodation did not seem to hinder or shift dialogic discourses into presentation and lecture-style authoritative teaching. However, the data also revealed the challenges of advancing content and language objectives in the same lesson under time constraints and given the reality of teacher training for adapted teachers in science. I argue that raising the content awareness of language teachers and the language awareness of content teachers has the potential to promote a genre-based, dialogic pedagogical approach in legitimizing learners’ views while offering access to dominant science perspectives in order to help ELLs develop criticality and maintain science identities as valued members of a high school science community. I reflect on the challenges in doing this and some of the strategies to overcome them. I conclude that the future of adapted teaching needs to endorse rigour as opposed to simplifying content, promote dialogicity instead of unilateral information-giving, utilize learners’ diverse pools of knowledge and experiences rather than leave them out of the curriculum, teach text-in-context as opposed to isolated language lessons, and foster critical thinking via reasoning and argumentation of today’s global issues to truly benefit language learners in developing science literacy.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Roumiana Ilieva
Angel Lin
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

All about Timmerman: an autobiographical mapping of benchmarks of artistic exploration, intellectual awareness and evolving identity from early childhood through to senior adulthood

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2021-03-31
Abstract: 

This dissertation is the author’s mourning diary. By way of discursive and poetic, epigraphic and fragmented, graphic and photographic modes of narrative inquiry, he marshals his grief in the aftermath of his parents’ deaths toward recasting broken and dysfunctional parental pedagogies—pedagogies that arrested his artistic aspirations and creative undertakings not only in childhood but over the vast terrain of his adult life—into a new and self-governed curricula; a curricula of self-love providing unencumbered throughways toward uninhibited self-expression and a fracture-free personhood by which to pursue new creative horizons in his senior years.

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

Transnational feminist analysis of intimate partner violence in South Asia: A scoping review

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-08-11
Abstract: 

Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) has been recognized as a global public health concern affecting millions of people across the world. Women in South Asian countries of India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are increasingly vulnerable to physical, sexual, and emotional abuse. The purpose of this study is to conduct a scoping review of the literature on the available interventions and support systems provided to survivors of IPV through a Transnational Feminist lens. This thesis offers a critical and grounded engagement with literature from South Asia that challenges a Western centered understanding of women from ‘Third World’ cultures and underscores the importance of feminist engagement with larger structures that keep women disempowered. This thesis details the search methods, inclusion criteria and the summary of results.12 articles were included for final analysis. Due to the growing epidemic of IPV and the limited literature available on this issue, specifically examining the impact of interventions and support systems on survivors of IPV, the findings of this review support the need for an examination of systemic injustices impacting women and increased collaboration across sectors for a unified response to IPV.

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