ELP Guest Seminar with Professor Megan Watkins and Professor Greg Noble

Published: 12 October 2023

Professor Megan Watkins and Professor Greg Noble (Western Sydney University) present 'Habituating a Scholarly Habitus: The Pedagogical Practices of the Home'.

Wednesday 15th November 2023
Room 432, St Andrew's Building, 11 Eldon Street, Glasgow G3 6NH

Habituating a Scholarly Habitus: The Pedagogical Practices of the Home

While a significant body of research in the sociology of education emphasizes the role of the home in providing young people with the resources and capacities needed to succeed at school, surprisingly little of this research actually explores how this is accomplished. In the current context of social anxieties around the rise of tutoring colleges and the perceived emphasis on continuous and intensive study amongst Asian-Australian families, a micro-sociology of home-based educational practices is called for. This seminar, drawing on findings from the Australian Research Council project, Schools, Ethnicity and Parenting based in six ethnically and socio-economically different schools in Sydney, examines the everyday practices of home-based study. Extending the insights of previous research into embodied habituation (Noble and Watkins, 2003) and the formation of a scholarly habitus (Watkins and Noble, 2013), and positioned against simplistic critiques of homework, we argue that educational dispositions are not simply the automatic transmission of class or ethnicity. Rather, they are an accomplishment realised through the situated and extensive structuring of the spaces and routines of family life, embodying regimes of disciplinary practice, patterned in relation to class and ethnicity, but never simply so.

About the speakers

Megan Watkins is Professor in the School of Education and Fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society, Western Sydney University. Her research interests lie in the cultural analysis of education and the formation of human subjectivities. In particular, her work engages with issues of pedagogy, embodiment, discipline and affect and the interrelation of these to human agency. These interests mesh with her exploration of the impact of cultural diversity on education and the ways in which different cultural practices can engender divergent habits and dispositions to learning. Megan is currently undertaking research into the impact of Asian migration on Australian society in two Australian Research Council Projects: ‘Schooling, Parenting and Ethnicity: Asian Migration and Australian Education’ and ‘Civic Sinoburbia? New Chinese Migrants and Everyday Citizenship in Sydney’. Her most recent book, with Greg Noble, is Doing Diversity Differently in a Culturally Complex World: Critical Perspectives on Multicultural Education (Bloomsbury, 2021).

Greg Noble is Professor at the Institute for Culture and Society, Western Sydney University. He has been involved in research in multiculturalism for almost four decades, with a special interest in the relations between youth, ethnicity and gender; migration and intercultural relations; cultural pedagogies and Bourdieusian theory; and multicultural education. As well as Doing Diversity Differently, his books include: Fields, Capitals, Habitus (2021), Disposed to Learn (2013) and On Being Lebanese in Australia (2010). He is currently working on a book called Migrant, Habitus. He is also working on the ARC projects ‘Schooling, Parenting and Ethnicity’ and ‘Civic Sinoburbia’.


First published: 12 October 2023

<< Events