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Conceptualising decolonisation as praxis – Seminar three: Decolonising the curriculum, pedagogy and assessment

March 31 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

A BILT/CBH/UNESCO Global Chair/Bristol Conversations in Education Seminar series  

This online seminar will focus on efforts to decolonise the curriculum, assessment and pedagogy. Building on the theoretical insights developed in the previous seminar, it will consider what it means in practical terms to decolonise the curriculum and the implications for assessment and pedagogy. The seminar will make a case for decolonising the curriculum both in terms of realising epistemic justice but also to prepare future generations with the capabilities to lead sustainable livelihoods within culturally diverse, peaceful, just and democratic societies.

The seminar will explore the following questions.

  • How can we develop critical awareness amongst our students of coloniality through our teaching?
  • How can we embed understanding of the debt that Western knowledge owes to other cultures/ civilisations?
  • How can we retell the relationship between the disciplines and the development of colonialism?
  • How can we relate how and what we teach to ongoing relations of coloniality?

It will argue that new approaches to pedagogy are required that can connect with the background and lived experiences of students and that develop critical awareness of coloniality. We also stress the central importance of transforming assessment because of the way it incentivises student effort, shapes curriculum and pedagogy and because of how it can emphasise hierarchies of knowledge and influence student agency. The seminar will illustrate its central arguments through a series of vignettes that build on a course taught at Bristol entitled Decolonise the Future as well as the examples outlined in the introduction and drawn from Economics, English literature, Science, Engineering, History, Medicine, Law, Sociology, Management, Geography and Education. The seminar will critically reflect on the possibilities for change. It will draw out both the opportunities for change but also the difficulties and challenges involved in realising changes to often entrenched practices.

Joining the seminar

You will be sent the joining link close to the date, the seminar will run from 1 – 2:30pm (last 30 mins is for discussion)