About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 5495-5502
Publication year: 2014
ISBN: 978-84-617-0557-3
ISSN: 2340-1117

Conference name: 6th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 7-9 July, 2014
Location: Barcelona, Spain

INNOVATING AND TRANSFORMING LEARNING AND TEACHING IN HIGHER EDUCATION: APPLYING A COMPREHENSIVE WHOLE BRAIN MODEL

P. Du Toit, T. Bothma, A.L. De Boer, D. Scheepers

University of Pretoria (SOUTH AFRICA)
In this paper we report the design of a comprehensive Whole Brain® Model for learning and facilitating learning that academics can use to accommodate the diversity of thinking preferences in their higher education practices. It is based on more than 14 years of research at the University of Pretoria, South Africa. Data obtained are from fields such as engineering, medicine, education, information science and academic staff development. It is important to realise that a preference for a particular thinking style and an avoidance of another are of equal importance when it comes to quality learning. Herrmann (1996) uses the term ‘turn-on’ work for authentic and academic tasks to be executed. It concerns work that is interesting, stimulating, pleasurable and satisfying – tasks that give a sense of fulfilment. And if individuals are given a choice, that is exactly what they select to do. This selection most often than not would be based on their preferred style of thinking. This has an effect on students’ academic development as prospective professionals who in future will need to operate in the world of work – real life. When students are accommodated according to their preferred way of thinking constant external reward is not required as executing tasks becomes rewarding in itself. However, when developing the full potential of students is kept in mind areas of avoidances should also be addressed. This is of importance seeing that as professional one should be able to execute different types of tasks. Any curriculum should make provision for both enhancing preferences and challenging avoidances.

As lecturers gain more experience with the Whole Brain® Model they tend to try to change their higher education practice. The more comfortable they become with the Whole Brain® Model, the more willing they are to innovate and transform their practices by applying the principles of whole brain thinking.

Research questions:
The following overarching research questions pertain to all projects reported:
- How can whole brain thinking contribute to enhancing quality of learning in higher education?
- How did the outcome of the innovated and transformed higher education practices contribute to the designing of the comprehensive whole brain model?

Research design:
A mixed methods approach was followed. As the focus is on innovating and transforming higher education practice many sub-projects had action research as core. The Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument (HBDI) was used to obtain both quantitative and qualitative data. Other data instruments used were questionnaires and interviews, photo and video evidence.
@InProceedings{DUTOIT2014INN,
author = {Du Toit, P. and Bothma, T. and De Boer, A.L. and Scheepers, D.},
title = {INNOVATING AND TRANSFORMING LEARNING AND TEACHING IN HIGHER EDUCATION: APPLYING A COMPREHENSIVE WHOLE BRAIN MODEL},
series = {6th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN14 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-617-0557-3},
issn = {2340-1117},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {7-9 July, 2014},
year = {2014},
pages = {5495-5502}}
TY - CONF
AU - P. Du Toit AU - T. Bothma AU - A.L. De Boer AU - D. Scheepers
TI - INNOVATING AND TRANSFORMING LEARNING AND TEACHING IN HIGHER EDUCATION: APPLYING A COMPREHENSIVE WHOLE BRAIN MODEL
SN - 978-84-617-0557-3/2340-1117
PY - 2014
Y1 - 7-9 July, 2014
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 6th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN14 Proceedings
SP - 5495
EP - 5502
ER -
P. Du Toit, T. Bothma, A.L. De Boer, D. Scheepers (2014) INNOVATING AND TRANSFORMING LEARNING AND TEACHING IN HIGHER EDUCATION: APPLYING A COMPREHENSIVE WHOLE BRAIN MODEL, EDULEARN14 Proceedings, pp. 5495-5502.
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