islPAL - International Society for Leadership in Pedagogy and Learning

Pedagogies and Learning

Barbra McKenzie

Dr Barbra McKenzie is a Senior Lecturer in Language and Literacy in the Faculty of Education at the University of Wollongong, Australia. Her research interests include:

  • Sensemaking Theory in organisations.
  • The link between teacher professional learning and classroom practice (the focus of her dissertation).
  • The role of the practicum in supporting pre-service and the role played by both intertextuality and visual literacy in children's learning.

She is a member of an executive board that supports NCTE and a member of a team recently awarded two research grants (2006 and 2009) funded by the Australian Research Council that focus upon the nexus between literacy policy, research and practice.


Keynote Overview

The Getting of Wisdom: Unlocking Tacit Knowledge

A favourite quote about the role and value of wisdom indicates that it is 'knowledge rightly applied' (unknown source) and now, more than at any time in the past we need to acknowledge and facilitate access to our combined educational wisdom. An increase in pressure regarding the role of education and its role and value in a global sense has raised the stakes (Chinnammai, 2005) as countries increasingly compete in international spheres that require the provision of a highly literate and articulate workforce. In our more finite national educational environment we are experiencing one of the most ambitious and far reaching changes to education in decades (ACARA, 2010). A large proportion of our teaching workforce is fast approaching retirement (ABS, 2006) - they are the current holders of years of knowledge and experience. A generation of new teachers will eventually take their place - how can we ensure that we provide less experienced teachers with access to that wisdom?