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Concerns and Student Back-up in the Common Areas in School: The Significance of the Borderlands
University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Culture Studies, Religious Studies and Educational Sciences, Curriculum studies. (STORIES)
University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Culture Studies, Religious Studies and Educational Sciences, Curriculum studies. (STORIES)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1871-4488
2013 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

One of the often neglected preconditions for a productive educational environment is that students feel positive about coming to school and that they have meaningful relationships in school. In this paper, attention is directed towards the common areas that lie within the school but outside of classrooms, e.g. corridors, school yards and dining halls. The concept of the “borderlands of the common areas” in everyday activities at schools is addressed. We explore common area spaces and practices, along with the intentions of the personnel that are responsible for them.

This paper presents data from a research project aiming at exploring the relational interplay between school personnel and students, its functions and complexity in the secondary school context. A year-long case study is being conducted during the 2012-13 school year at a secondary school that has recently been renovated and where the staff is working to improve the school environment. We make use of multiple data sources, including document analysis, mapping, observations and interviews. In the analyses, spatial theories are applied, a novel approach within the field. These are fruitful for understanding the factors that contribute to positive relational processes within the school context  (cf Author 1 & Author 2; Ferrare & Apple, 2010).  

The common areas in the school are easily neglected and can be described as “non-places” in the everyday activities. The results indicate that the common areas in the school are used for practices addressing student concerns, aimed at improving conditions for students so that they can concentrate on studying. These borderland practices are viewed as constructed social spaces, where students can feel safe and enjoy coming to school.  These two predicaments are in turn preconditions for enhancing students’ ability to study and to succeed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013.
Keywords [en]
borderlands in school, common areas in school, school improvement, secondary school, spatial theories
National Category
Educational Sciences Didactics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-13200OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-13200DiVA, id: diva2:560806
Conference
The NERA 41st Congress, March 7th to 9th, 2013, Reykjavik, Iceland
Projects
Att förebygga hot och våld i skolan genom hållbara relationer - en studie av lärares relationsarbete i skolans mellanrum
Funder
AFA Insurance, 110145Available from: 2012-10-15 Created: 2012-10-15 Last updated: 2018-03-13Bibliographically approved

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Grannäs, JanFrelin, Anneli

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
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