From herb garden to wiki: Responding to change in naturopathic education through scholarly reflection

Airdre Grant, Meg O'Reilly

Abstract


The study of naturopathy in Australia has undergone a number of significant changes that have impacted dramatically on scholarly and academic practice. Naturopathic education has shifted from apprenticeship style with a charismatic teacher, to several private colleges offering advanced diplomas/degrees with Government accreditation, and into the university system. In the university context, reflective practice and scholarship have been key to effective responses to change. These changes include the introduction of new models of technology and delivery, access to greater resources and collegial networks and adoption of innovative teaching approaches; all of which have had a significant impact on a developing pedagogy in naturopathy. Utilising a ethnographic methodology, interviews were conducted with ten naturopathy lecturers to investigate their scholarly reflective approaches to decision making and pedagogy. Some of the changes to academic practice within this context and the innovations arising are discussed. These innovations, whilst increasingly common in higher education, are new pedagogical approaches within the contexts of naturopathy, a discipline that traditionally has sat outside formal learning structures.

Keywords


Reflective decision making, integrative teaching practices, technology innovations

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ISSN 1527-9316