Using an International Videoconference in Problem-Based Inquiry Projects: The Role of Public Voice, Audience, and Positionality, pp. 3 of 14

The Participants, Project, and Context for the Videoconference

The participants in this study were all secondary age students from the U.S. state of Utah and the Republic of Macedonia. These two sites were chosen because of my previous connections with educators in Macedonia and my position at the time in Utah. I had worked with the teachers in both Utah and Macedonia on previous civic education projects, and thought they could collaborate well together. The Utah teacher taught civics and psychology courses, and the Macedonian teachers taught English; one teacher taught Macedonian speaking students and one taught Albanian speaking students. I also thought these two groups of students would be a good pairing for the project because of the similar split in each context between ethnicities and religions.

Site

Ethnicity

Religion

Course

Age Range

Utah, US (59)

 

 

Civics

16-18

 

Latina/o (26)

Catholic (24)

 

 

 

White (33)

Church of Latter Day Saints (LDS) (35)

 

 

Macedonia (45)

 

 

English Language

16-18

 

Albanian (21)

Muslim (21)

 

 

 

Macedonian (24)

Orthodox (24)

 

 

For this article, I will focus on one group of twelve Utah students that developed their problem-based inquiry project around the topic of marriage equality, and specifically, defining marriage in both a legal and religious way.

An Inspiring Quote

"[Open-mindedness] includes an active desire to listen to more sides than one; to give heed to facts from whatever source they come; to give full attention to alternative possibilities; to recognize the possibility of error even in the beliefs that are dearest to us."

~ John Dewey, How We Think

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