Making us: Methodologies of researching learning and teaching in the university studio

Megan McPherson
2014 Conference

Scholarship of learning and teaching in studio pedagogies is a paramount concern in the university because of the claims of pedagogical need, innovation and evidence. In this paper, I focus on thinking through how embodiment in the studio can enable different knowings, building evidence to support and problematise claims about studio pedagogies. The paper draws on findings from a current study of the crit in the university studio that used mixed methods and critical feminist theory in order to posit that the crit makes ‘becoming’ and being an artist in multiple ways. I am thinking through Barad’s notion of intra-action (2007) in this context of learning and teaching in the studio, as a mutual process of making. The crit makes relations to the pedagogy of the studio, materially, spatially, temporally and simultaneously that are complex to unpick and untangle. I argue that the crit is an embodied act; it is a ‘made’ pedagogic space of action, affect and sensation. The crit contributes to learning in the studio as a mutual process of making; pedagogically of its localised context, and acculturated to local notions of art production, and expectations and imaginations of becoming an artist.

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About the author

Megan McPherson is a practicing artist, educational researcher and has taught in the university art studio for 15 years. Megan is a PhD scholar in the Faculty of Education, Monash University where she is conducting an interdisciplinary research study of the role of the crit in studio pedagogies. She is interested in emerging research design and methodologies, feminist critical theory and professional practice in the arts and education. Her research work in the university has included a number of studies that have investigated peer learning and peer assessment in the creative industries, elearning approaches in the university studio, and professional development for teaching in new generation learning spaces. Megan is currently working on a number of research projects that are investigating academic identities and practices through and with artifacts and texts.