Knowledge is a key term in many accounts of the contemporary world. What, to many teachers, is something that used to be stored in the mind is now talked about in terms of its production, its leveraging and its consumption. It has become an ubiquitous adjective in many public policy documents. In this framing, schools, among many other roles, are to prepare students for a knowledge society in which, presumably, they will do knowledge work. Just what this knowledge is, as Moore and Young (2001) suggest, is still unclear. Regardless of what knowledge is appropriate for a knowledge economy, a larger problem remains for schools and that is for much of their history they have been concerned largely, in the context of a knowledge economy, with the consumption of knowledge. This presentation is based on the work of two Queensland primary schools in Australia, which have embarked on an agenda that can be described as knowledge production. This initiative, while having some similarities with other approaches to knowledge work in schools, has developed a useful set of guiding ideas that will be discussed during the talk.
Professor Chris Bigum is a Professor in the Faculty of Education at Deakin University. His research and teaching interests are in the implications of new information and communications technologies for educational practice and policy. Specifically, these interests include: new literacy studies, actor-network approaches to the study of educational innovation, digital epistemologies, schools as knowledge producers, and scenario planning in education.
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