University of Pretoria, South Africa
Keynote: Appreciative education to enhance quality outputs through assessment and feedback practices
Time : 9:30-10:00
Prof Isabel Coetzee is a senior lecturer at University of Pretoria for past 19 years involved in the education and training of pre-graduate and post-graduate students. Her area of clinical expertise is Critical Care Nursing Science.. She has supervised post-graduate scholars to completion a total of 30 Masters and 1 PhD students.. Currently she is supervising 15 Masters and 7 PhD students. She is an external examiner at several national and international universities, has examined 30 Masters dissertations and 9 PhD thesis. Prof I Coetzee has presented at various National and International Conferences relating Critical Care, Higher education and Practice development aspects. She has 18 published article in National and International Journals and is a co-researcher in a International Practice development research project with NRF Funding. She is a Fellow of the Academia of Nursing in South African (FANSA), as well as the South African representative of the World Federation for Critical care nurses (WFCCN). She is a recipient of the Critical Care Society of South Africa`s Presidents` Nursing Award for outstanding contribution to Critical Care in South Africa.
Traditionally, educators focus on the negative aspect of a learning activity, module, or programme as evidenced in the examples of questions usually asked: What is wrong and why are the students performing so poorly? What is causing conflict between students and preceptors and who is responsible? Being asked to answer questions in a negative language, students may experience feelings of failure and negativity that, in turn, has an adverse effect on innovation and creativity. These types of questions may cause students to be demotivated and unable to plan actions to improve their academic performance and outcome. The aim of this article is to enhance educators’ awareness of the value and importance of appreciative feedback. Furthermore this article will guide educators in higher education institutions on how to facilitate learning in an appreciative manner and in turn increase quality outputs. The findings of this article are based on an in-depth literature review and findings from my doctoral study. The findings illustrated the importance of the educators to focus on (1) assessment for learning, (2) assessment of learning, (3) important questions to ask when giving feedback, and (4) giving appreciative feedback. The results have implications for educators/facilitators’/preceptor as well as for the student. The power of appreciative education lies in the way in which students become engaged and inspired by focusing on their own positive educational experiences. The emphasis is firmly on appreciating the activities and responses of people (students) rather than concentrating on their problems, furthermore it challenges people (educators/students) to rethink their ideas on how people work, how changes happens, and how research can contribute to this process.