Homeschooling: Between Croatian aspirations and Slovenian reality
pp. 7-22 | Published Online: March 2020 | DOI: 10.22521/edupij.2020.91.1
Gita Mateja de Laat, Katarina Dadić and Rona Bušljeta Kardum
In this study we describe a short history of homeschooling in Europe, with particular emphasis on Slovenia and Croatia. We describe the legal frameworks of both countries, with a focus mostly on Slovenia where homeschooling is legal, whilst in Croatia it is not legal. To find out how parents think about homeschooling and especially their thoughts about legislation on homeschooling, we conducted interviews with five Slovenian families who are already homeschooling their children and five Croatian families who aspire to do so, with the intention to gain clearer insight into the concrete reality of homeschooling in both countries. We address both the legislation and human experiences in order to examine to what extent the Slovenian example could form a basis for the creation of an authentic Croatian homeschooling model.
Keywords: Homeschooling, children, parents, education, pedagogical pluralism.
Quality Assurance Practices Applied in PTTCs: Listening to the Student Teachers’ Voice Through Focus Group Discussion
pp. 23-42 | Published Online: March 2020 | DOI: 10.22521/edupij.2020.91.2
Ensuring the quality of education is the major concern affecting all tertiary and higher education institutions in Uganda, including Primary Teacher Training colleges (PTTCs). The primary aim of the current study was to provide the students’ perspective on quality assurance (QA) practices applied in Uganda’s PTTCs. The study applied a qualitative research design based on focus group discussion. Four PTTCs were purposively selected, which were Buloba (BLK), Ggaba (GBK), which are both private PTTCs; and Kibuli (KIB) and Rakai (RBK), which are both public PTTCs. The study identified “continuous improvement,” “accreditation,” “self-evaluation,” “external examinations,” and “student involvement in QA” as the QA practices applied in Uganda’s PTTCs. Furthermore, the study also revealed several challenges to the successful implementation of QA in PTTCs, which were “negative attitude towards quality assurance,” “lack of skilled manpower regarding QA,” “improper communication,” and “lack of financial resources for QA implementation.” The study concluded that although this research was limited to primary teacher training institutions in Uganda’s educational setting, and on an interpretative qualitative paradigm, it is anticipated that the study’s findings will provide an understanding on the QA practices implemented in Uganda’s PTTCs through listening to the students as the primary stakeholders of primary teacher education.
Keywords: Quality assurance practices, primary teacher training colleges (PTTCs), student teachers’ voice.
Why are There Different Grading Practices Based on Students’ Choice of Business Major?
pp. 43-57 | Published Online: March 2020 | DOI: 10.22521/edupij.2020.91.3
There is a considerable amount of focus on the grading systems applied in higher education, as it is an important tool for ranking undergraduate students’ in terms of their academic success. Several studies have suggested that different grading practices exist among various colleges. This is also the case in Norway, even though the intention is to ensure that the same score is awarded independent of the individual institution. This study will explore the grading practices within a business school in Norway. Since the students can choose different pathways in their third year of undergraduate study, the academic composition of students can vary. Students with good grades mostly prefer Accounting or Finance, whilst those performing below average tend to select Marketing or Management. This composition variance causes differences in the grading pattern, as it is relative easier to achieve a good grade where the peer students are less qualified. This also has a gender effect, since females generally opt to study Marketing or Management, hence the average female student may benefit from a less rigorous grade assessment within these fields.
Keywords: Grading practice, higher education, business school, business courses, gender.
Tracking Learning and Teaching Chains and Their Variations in the Development of Mixed-Methods Methodology
pp. 58-73 | Published Online: March 2020 | DOI: 10.22521/edupij.2020.91.4
Recently, inspirational articles on research methodology have been written on the development of the mixed-methods approach. This area of study concerns methodological trends in the construction of research designs. One may ask, whether it is possible to construct a notional piece of investigation, potentially highlighting a research design that successfully seeks to identify a causal mechanism. The purpose of the current study is to consider how to construct a research design that would illustrate the application of methodological ideas in the context of educational research, such as school education and learning. This study produces three dimensions of causal mechanism: a horizontal dimension (chain length), a vertical dimension (possibilities of different variations), and tentatively a hypothetical causal network dimension (including context factors).
Keywords: Mixed methods, causal mechanism, research design, teaching, learning.