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Final version! Many, many thanks to all those who stayed with me over a long and bumpy path and contributed to the evolution of the final thesis and to those who gave their time and patience to examin it.

How do I Evolve Living-Educational-Theory Praxis in Living-boundaries?


My educational practice is concerned with enhancing children and young persons’ abilities to learn to live a loving, satisfying, productive and worthwhile life, for themselves and others. This thesis offers an original contribution to knowledge as a multimedia narrative. It communicates my ontological values of a loving recognition, respectful connectedness and educational responsibility, and social values of an inclusive, emancipating and egalitarian society. I clarify meanings of my values, as they emerge within living-boundaries through the evolution of my living-theory praxis, to form explanatory principles and living standards of judgment in my claim to know my practice.

Working as a senior educational psychologist responsible for implementing policy on high ability learning, I experienced the following concerns: Practice, theory and research often appeared to lose connection with the purpose of education; Theory and practice appeared to be developed independently, and without explanation or evaluation related to values ofeducation; Those involved with education appeared to be in discrete worlds, each vying to exert their hegemony over the totalising development of educational theory, practice and provision.

Emerging from my research I offer four original ideas:

1) Living-Educational-Theory praxis, highlighting the fundamental importance of educators creating ‘values-based explanation of their educational influences in learning’ (Whitehead, 1989a), as they research to develop praxis within living-boundaries.

2) Living-boundaries as co-creative space within which energy-flowing values can be clarified and communicated.

3) Inclusive gifted and talented education developed from an educational perspective, which enables each learner to develop and offer talents, expertise and knowledge as life-affirming and life-enhancing gifts. The knowledge is that created of the world, of self, and self in and of the world.

4) Living-Theory TASC, a relationally-dynamic and multidimensional approach to research and developing praxis, which integrates Living-Theory (Whitehead, 1989a) with Thinking Actively in a Social Context (TASC) (Wallace and Adams, 1993).

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