Lecturers’ curational abilities: selecting & structuring educational resources in higher professional education

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterAcademic

36 Downloads (Pure)


In today’s era of content abundance, education has to deal with changed practices for the dissemination of knowledge. Many digital resources are available, and they have the potential to take the place of textbooks. ‘The role of the classic textbook as the key, immutable reference point for any class subject, is rapidly fading’, says Good (2016). Educational publishers like Pearson see a decline in textbook use (Sweney, 2017), and a study at a Dutch university of applied sciences (Leighton, 2015) indicates that lecturers in higher education move away from core textbooks towards a variety of materials, including powerpoint slides, websites, and videos. Baron & Zablot (2015) complement this, saying ‘teachers now have the possibility to create and modify resources’. This development carries the risk that the structure, continuity and coherence textbooks are supposed to provide (Littlejohn, 2011), disappear. One could argue that when structure and coherence disappear from learning materials, the quality of education is at risk. To make the most of (digital) materials that teachers select, they must be organized well (Deschaine & Sharma, 2015). In order to do that, lecturers will have to act as skilled curators when selecting and structuring learning materials. Central in the concept of curation is that it goes beyond selection: providing coherence and context is what sets out curation from mere selection (Bhaskar, 2016). Considered from the perspective of teaching, curating means selecting and structuring learning content for students, while also providing them with context and coherence. The notion of lecturers as curators has been discussed by Siemens (2008), who describes the changing roles of lecturers and identifies ‘curational educators’ as those who ‘acknowledge the autonomy of learners, yet understand the frustration of exploring unknown territories without a map’. So far, the literature mainly focusses on providing students with curational skills, since these are important 21st century and media literacy skills (e.g. Jenkins et al., 2009; Potter, 2012). Little empirical research has been done when it comes to curational roles of lecturers. This proposed poster provides a mixed-methods research design for a PhD study.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 26 Oct 2018
EventInternational Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning: Toward a Learning Culture - Bergen, Norway
Duration: 24 Oct 201827 Sept 2019
Conference number: 2018


ConferenceInternational Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
Abbreviated titleISSOTL


Dive into the research topics of 'Lecturers’ curational abilities: selecting & structuring educational resources in higher professional education'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this