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Stellenbosch University Staff Members win People’s Choice awards at International Conference
Author: Claudia Swart
Published: 01/04/2016

Stellenbosch University Staff Members win People's Choice awards at International Conference


The Second Legitimation Code Theory (LCTC2) conference took place at the University of Sydney in Australia between 3 and 7 July. 


Keynote speakers included Prof Karl Maton (Director of the LCT Centre for Knowledge-Building), Prof James R. Martin (Deputy Director of the LCT Centre for Knowledge-Building) and Prof Chris Winberg who holds a South African National Research Foundation Chair and is Director of the Work-integrated Learning Research Unit in the Education Faculty of Cape Peninsula University of Technology, South Africa.


Two Stellenbosch University Staff members, Dr Marnel Mouton (Botany and Zoology) and Dr Hanelie Adendorff (Center for Teaching and Learning) received People's Choice awards at the conference.


In her paper titled LCT to facilitate transition from high school to first year biology", Dr Mouton described how she had used Legitimation Code Theory (LCT) to amend the curriculum of the first year extended degree programme Biology module to enable cumulative knowledge building and epistemological access for these first year students. This work builds on the work of Kelly-Laubscher and Luckett (2016) who looked at reasons why students, especially those from previously disadvantaged backgrounds in South Africa, who perform relatively well in high school biology struggle with the subject in first year. Through this work, Dr Mouton, had shown that LCT is not only valuable as analytical framework, but also as a tool for curriculum planning.


Dr Adendorff's paper titled: #ScienceMustFall: A struggle for control of the legitimation device?" offered a cursory first attempt at understanding the #SMF conversation that played out in social media towards the end of 2016. She employed LCT to analyze elements of this interaction as it played out in social media circles. The theory allowed her to look at the organizing principles of knowledge practices and illuminated some of the deeper issues connected with the broader decolonization discussion and in doing so, offered a starting point for a conversation about this topic. In the paper, she argued, amongst others, that a lack of understanding for how specific actions are perceived and the reasons for such perceptions could result in well-intentioned decolonization attempts to fail.


Other staff members who attended the conference include Dr Robbie Pott from Process Engineering, whose paper “Using the semantic wave to improve learning in fluid mechanics" was selected for an extended paper slot; Dr Ilse Rootman-Le Grange (BLC in Science) who analysed assessment in first year Chemistry; Dr Karin Wolff (CTL advisor in Engineering) who looked at curricular knowledge in Engineering; Dr JP Bosman (CLT director) who studied meaning making in the SU Blended Learning Short Course) and Dr Cecilia Jacobs (CTL Director) and Mr Gert Young (CTL advisor in EMS) with their paper reporting on programme renewal at SU.