Learning Theories in BSL: Bloom’s taxonomy


This video was created in partnership between the educational development team at Westminster University and City Literary Institute as an outcome of a successful bid to create blended teaching and learning resources for Initial Teacher Education in 2013.  The following is an excerpt from an article submitted to FE News by Rebecca Eliahoo of the University of Westminster, and gives background to the project, City Lit’s background in deaf education and British Sign Language (BSL).  There is also a link to the full article below the excerpt.

Specialist teacher educators, interpreters and online technologists have developed ground-breaking videoed and signed materials (using British Sign Language – BSL) for deaf teacher trainees at the City Literary Institute in London. These innovative resources will support a pre-service Award in Education and Training and an in-service Certificate in Education and Training.

The videos are part of a highly successful collaborative project with the University of Westminster and five of its partner colleges, which won an LSIS Phase 2 Research bid for £60,000 to produce blended learning resources for Initial Teacher Education in 2013.

There is long and rich history of deaf education at City Lit, which is a Special Designated Institution for Adult Learning. In 1919, after the First World War, City Lit started a Deaf Education department, to help servicemen whose hearing had been impaired, following shelling during the war. According to Action on Hearing Loss, there are now 3.7 million deaf people employed in the UK and one in six people in the UK have some form of hearing loss.

British Sign Language became a nationally recognised language and, by the 1990s, City Lit had developed a reputation for teacher training for BSL tutors. Although several organisations in the UK run deaf awareness, BSL and lip-reading courses, there are only a few filmed resources for Deaf teacher education and these tend to focus on practical tips and hints for teaching. The team at City Lit wanted to produce good quality videos in BSL which would encourage a deeper understanding of theories of learning and how these can be integrated into the teaching practice of deaf teacher trainees.

The video project was a fertile collaboration between teacher educators, interpreters, online technologists, film-makers and editors, says City Lit’s head of teacher education Khorshed Bhote: “The teacher training co-ordinator for deaf education, Olga Lamb chose interpreters who had done initial teacher training courses at the college, so they understood the educational jargon. The teacher education department had an advisory role and peer reviewed the videos suggesting changes and checking academic content”.

It was important to use practical examples from teaching. Although Olga Lamb works with Deaf teacher trainees who want to teach BSL, the teacher education department at City Lit also has Deaf teacher trainees in hearing classes who teach IT and Art, not just BSL. So the examples used related to SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timed) learning objectives, thus matching several different levels of Bloom’s taxonomy and linking to Bloom’s concepts of ‘mastery’ and developmental tasks.

To read the full article, click here.

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