Threshold knowledge

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Threshold knowledge is a term in the study of higher education used to describe core concepts — or threshold concepts — which, once understood, transform perception of a given subject, phenomenon, or experience. [1] Introduced by Jan Meyer and Ray Land, [1] [2] [3] [4] Meyer and Land also discuss the related idea of troublesome knowledge, ideas that appear alien or counter-intuitive. [1] [3] [4] The theory holds that:

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... there are certain concepts, or certain learning experiences, which resemble passing through a portal, from which a new perspective opens up, allowing things formerly not perceived to come into view. This permits a new and previously inaccessible way of thinking about something. It represents a transformed way of understanding, or interpreting, or viewing something, without which the learner cannot progress, and results in a reformulation of the learners' frame of meaning. The thresholds approach also emphasises the importance of disciplinary contexts. As a consequence of comprehending a threshold concept there may thus be a transformed internal view of subject matter, subject landscape, or even world view. Typical examples might be 'Personhood' in Philosophy; 'The Testable Hypothesis' in Biology; 'Gravity' in Physics; 'Reactive Power' in Electrical Engineering; 'Depreciation' in Accounting; 'Legal Narrative' in Law; 'Geologic Time' in Geology; 'Uncertainty' in Environmental Science; 'Deconstruction' in Literature; 'Limit' in Mathematics or 'Object-oriented Programming' in Computer Science. [2]

These ideas have been explored by several subsequent researchers in a variety of disciplinary contexts including:

The theory has also been criticised. [13]

See also

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References

  1. 1 2 3 Meyer J H F and Land R 2003 "Threshold Concepts and Troublesome Knowledge: Linkages to Ways of Thinking and Practising" in Improving Student Learning: Ten Years On. C. Rust (Ed), OCSLD, Oxford.
  2. 1 2 Meyer, Jan; Land, Ray; Baillie, Caroline, eds. (2010). Threshold concepts and transformational learning (PDF). Educational futures: rethinking theory and practice. 42. Rotterdam; Boston: Sense Publishers. p. ix. ISBN   9789460912054. OCLC   649651179.
  3. 1 2 Meyer JHF, Land R (2005). "Threshold concepts and troublesome knowledge (2): Epistemological considerations and a conceptual framework for teaching and learning" Higher Education, 49(3), 373-388.
  4. 1 2 Land, R., Cousin, G., Meyer, J.H.F. and Davies, P. (2005), "Threshold concepts and troublesome knowledge (3): implications for course design and evaluation", in C. Rust (ed.), Improving Student Learning − equality and diversity, Proceedings of the 12th Improving Student Learning Conference. Oxford: OCLSD.
  5. Korosteleva, E. A. (2010) Threshold Concept Through Enactive Learnings: How Effective Are They in the Study of European Politics?, International Studies Perspectives, 11, 37-50.
  6. Park EJ, Light G (2009). "Identifying Atomic Structure as a Threshold Concept: Student mental models and troublesomeness" International Journal of Science Education, 31(2), 233-258.
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  8. Clouder L (2005). "Caring as a 'threshold concept': Transforming students in higher education into health (care) professionals" Teaching in Higher Education, 10(4), 505-517.
  9. Bradbeer J (2006). "Threshold concepts within the disciplines". Planet, no. 17, 16-7.
  10. Lucas, U., Mladenovic, R. (2007), "The potential of threshold concepts: an emerging framework for educational research and practice." London Review of Education, 5(3), 237−248.
  11. Bulmer, M., O'Brien, M., Price, S. (2007) "Troublesome concepts in statistics: a student perspective on what they are and how to learn them", UniServe Science, Proceedings of the Assessment in Science Teaching and Learning Symposium, University of Sydney, September 28−29, 2007, 9–15.
  12. "Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education". Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL). 2015-02-09. Retrieved 2017-10-19.
  13. Rowbottom DP (2007). "Demystifying threshold concepts". Journal of Philosophy of Education, 41(2), 263–270. doi : 10.1111/j.1467-9752.2007.00554.x