To what extent is ‘thinking on your feet’/reflection-in-action relevant to the role of Further and Higher Education Examination Invigilators? Implications for examination policy and practice

Main Article Content

Mark A Minott

Abstract

The aim of this small-scale grounded approach qualitative study was to examine the extent to which the skill of ‘thinking on your feet’/reflection-in-action is relevant to the role of Further and Higher Education Examination Invigilators particularly during the phases of an examination where students are present. The importance of this study rested in the fact that there is a paucity of research which examines the role of examination invigilators at the further and higher education levels. Therefore, it aids in filling a literary gap and gives them a ‘voice’ in the research literature. Study participants were six examination invigilators, working in a London Further Education College. Purposeful convenience or opportunity sampling was used in their selection. Interviews and documentary analysis were the research methods used. The main research question was: ‘To what extent is ‘thinking on your feet’/reflection-in-action relevant to the role of Further and Higher Education Examination Invigilators? This also formed the topic for this paper’. The findings revealed the fact examination invigilators have a common understanding of the research term ‘thinking on your feet’/reflection-in-action, and rated it relevant, very relevant and extremely relevant to their role. Relevance was linked to its usefulness i.e., usefulness in various circumstances; decision making; preventing mistakes and uncovering students’ duplicity. The implications of the findings are discussed.

Article Details

Section
Original Research

References

Author (2018).

Author (2009).

Adler, S. (1994) ‘Reflective practice and teacher education’ in Ross E Wayne (editor) Reflective practice in social studies, National Council for the Social Studies Washington DC USA

Baker, N. (2017). A Job Description for an Exam Invigilator. Retrieved from: https://careertrend.com/about-6626876-job-description-exam-invigilator.html.

Bindels, E., Verberg, C., Scherpbier, A., Heeneman, S., & Lombarts, K. (2018). Reflection revisited: How physicians conceptualize and experience reflection in professional practice – a qualitative study. Bmc Medical Education, 18(1), 1-10. doi:10.1186/s12909-018-1218-y

Bond, J. (2011). Thinking on Your Feet: Principals' International Journal of Educational Leadership Preparation 6 (4). Retrieved from: https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ974347.pdf

Bush, T. (2002). Authenticity – reliability, validity and triangulation. In: A. Briggs, M. Coleman & M. Morrison (Eds.), Research methods in Educational leadership and Management. London: Sage

Cortazzi, M. (2002). ‘Analyzing narratives and documents’ in Coleman Marianne and Briggs Ann R.J Research Methods in Educational Leadership and Management Paul Chapman Publishing London; Sage

Emerald-insight. (2006). "How thinking on your feet can be taught: Improvisation needn't be as risky as it seems", Development and Learning in Organizations: An International Journal, 20 (5) 31-34. https://doi.org/10.1108/14777280610688041

Ghaye, T. & Ghaye, K. (1999) Teaching and Learning through Critical Reflective Practice. London: David Fulton.

Giles, C (2017) Exam Invigilator Duties. Retrieved from: https://www.ehow.co.uk/about_6626876_job-description-exam-invigilator.html.

Glaser, B. & Strauss, A. (1967). The discovery of Grounded Theory: Theories of qualitative research. Mill Valley: The Sociology Press.

Glaser, B. (1978). Theoretical Sensitivity. Advances in the Methodology of Grounded Theory. Mill Valley: The Sociology Press.

Guba, E. G. & Lincoln, Y. S. (1998). Competing paradigms in qualitative research. In N.K Denzin and Y.S. Lincoln (Eds.), The landscape of qualitative research theories and issues (pp. 195–220). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Hurwitz, S. (2006). Can you learn to think on your feet? Improvisational actors and jazz musicians do it all the time. Here's what you can learn from their techniques. Across the Board, 43(2), 16-22.

King’s College London. (2019).Job Description: Examination Invigilator. Retrieved from: https://www.kcl.ac.uk/campuslife/acservices/examinations/invigilators/invigilatorJD.pdf

LaRossa, R. (2005). Grounded Theory Methods and Qualitative Family Research. Journal of Marriage and Family, 67(4), 837-857. doi: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1741-3737.2005.00179.x

Mindtool content team (2019) Thinking on Your Feet. Staying Cool and Confident Under Pressure. Retrieved from https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/ThinkingonYourFeet.htm.

On campus Coventry University (2016). Exams Invigilator. Retrieved from: https://www.cambridgeeducationgroup.com/ugc-1/1/9/0/exam_invigilator_oncampus_coventry.pdf

Posner, G. J. (1989) Field Experience methods of Reflective Teaching New York: Longman Publishing groups

Robson, C. (2007). How to do a research project, a guide for undergraduate students. Malden USA: Blackwell Publishing.

Schön, D.A. (1987). Educating the Reflective Practitioner. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Schön, D.A. (1983). The reflective practitioner: How professionals think in action. New York: Basic Books.

Zeichner, K. M. & Liston, D. P. (Eds) (1996) Reflective Teaching – an introduction. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.