Demystifying research methods: everyday experiences as socio-cultural co(n)texts for effective research methods in teaching and learning in institutions of higher learning in Africa
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The aim of the paper is to demonstrate how everyday knowledge can be incorporated into the classroom practices of institutions of higher learning to inform inclusive outcomes for linguistically and culturally diverse students. Using a metaphor of a marketer’s everyday interrogation of market conditions, a postgraduate guide to proposal writing and the funds of knowledge socio-cultural framework, we illustrate how forms of everyday and school knowledge can be used concurrently in the construction of socially responsive dialogic pedagogy. We argue for scholarship of teaching and learning (SOTL) in the South in which knowledge and theory generation is not a preserve of English only, but more so, of the complex interactions between English and the multiplicity of languages that students bring to the classroom. We conclude that SOTL in the South needs to be founded on the transfiguration of everyday knowledge and formal academic knowledge to facilitate the production of new and more powerful knowledge in multicultural postcolonial society. This would allow for inclusive pedagogy that caters for diversity in classrooms, and activity-based teaching and learning, networking students’ experiential, community/home and formal academic knowledge in the construction of new and powerful knowledge.