MCU at the 6th ISCAR Congress

On July 30—August 7, MCU participated in the 6th Congress of the International Society for Cultural-Historical Activity Research (ISCAR) in Natale, Brazil. The ISCAR Congress aims to bring together theorists, researchers, and practitioners who use the works of Vygotsky, Leontiev, and Luria in their activities.

The staff of the MCU Institute of Lifelong Learning has represented MCU at the Congress. Marina Shalashova, Director of the Institute, Tatiana Kovaleva, Head of the Laboratory of Lifelong Learning Personalization, and Vadim Karastelev, a senior research fellow at the Laboratory of Lifelong Learning Personalization, have delivered the presentation “Interactive Questioning as the Means of Realising the Longlife Learning.”

The scholars commented on their report:

Our work bases on the three types of eliciting students’ answers:

the first type is the inquiry, the widest-spread one. It presupposes that educators ask the questions they know the right answers to, get students’ one, and compares them in the learning process. There is no need for interaction between students, even in cooperative learning.

The second is the active type used in problem-based learning. It bases on the fact that students communicate in groups while searching together for solutions to the problem put by the teacher. At the same time, the role of the teacher is leading, and they assess the students’ answers.

The third, interactive type of asking questions — the one we use — is based on the fact that neither teacher nor students know the right answer that may not even exist. Meanwhile, the focus is on meaningful interaction between students. In this case, students, unlike in two other types, take responsibility for their questions and begin to relate reflexively to their thinking and activity, entering the process of lifelong learning.

We focus on the development of the techniques of interactive asking, based on Lev Vygotsky’s cultural-historical theory.