Communities of practice: Learning together to teach together
The 2016 Annual SCoTENS Conference theme is intended to facilitate an open and engaging exploration of the value of collaborative learning to support teachers’ professional practice. The Conference will draw upon the expertise of the key learning theorist Etienne Wenger whose scholarship on learning and particularly his concepts of ‘communities of practice’ and ‘boundary’ have enriched our understanding of how we learn and how we teach. Wenger reminds us that we all participate in multiple communities of practice and how this multi-membership often involves crossing boundaries and negotiating meaning with others outside our immediate CoP. Boundary, he suggests, is not only for outsiders, it keeps insiders in but in weaving and crossing boundaries we extend the possibilities for action and mutual engagement. SCOTENS 2016 offers us a chance to reflect on the important communities of practice of which we are a part and how we can continue to collaborate to extend and enrich our professional practices. Keynote addresses on the conference theme of learning together to teach together are designed to invite delegates to collaborate and talk about their practices. Workshops are built around cross-border partnerships and will seek to develop our understanding of collaborative professional learning. We look forward to welcoming you to our conference and hearing what you have to say.