Authors Smith and Duckworth are UK-based professors of education, and Duckworth is also a co-lead for the Social Justice in Education Network. The authors based Transformative Teaching and Learning in Further Education: Pedagogies of Hope and Social Justice on conclusions from the Transforming Lives research project that provided an opportunity to “affirm the primary purpose of education” (p. 9). This research developed “case studies from college and adult education settings” (p. 10). The authors looked at the research in relation to the impact of education and how it can be transformative as Transformative Teaching and Learning in Further Education: Pedagogies of Hope and Social Justice provides testimonies from teachers and students.
Students, teachers, researchers, and policy makers could find Transformative Teaching and Learning in Further Education: Pedagogies of Hope and Social Justice to be a valuable resource as the authors explain the sometimes not appreciated and not measured “holistic” benefits of further education. The authors argue that college and lifelong learning can have a positive impact on social justice issues not only for individuals, but also for families and communities. Consider these snippets from students about the positive impact education has had for them.
“When you can’t read and write out there, it’s really hard. And it’s scary. Now I can actually read and write and sign my own name. When I go to the doctor I can sign a note… You need educations to learn about everything that’s going on outside” (p. 76).
“Given the opportunity to further myself, that’s a no-brainer. But then coming to college, that first day, I was like” I’m not sure I can do this…It’s changed me. I can do things, I am capable…Now I feel like I’ve got a bit of respect. It’s definitely life-changing” (p. 84).
These snippets speak for themselves as does the following from a teacher.
“I think she then made another change in just kind of…from going there to get the course done for the sake of getting a qualification to actually wanting to learn and develop. I think it’s one of the reasons I’m teaching as well because of the impact she had on me” (p. 92).
By Jeanette Evans