Glossary of terms used on this site

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Term Definition
sabbatical

leave from one's normal work for a period of rest study or training.

sanctions

measures or penalties designed in response to poor pupil behaviour in school or more generally as planned consequences for rule-breaking in any sphere or designed to end rule-breaking and enforce compliance.

scaffolding

a term from the work of Lev Vygotsky (1896 -1934) which refers to the support given by a teacher or more experienced learner to enable another learner construct and develop new knowledge.

scepticism

a doubting or questioning mental attitude. It is also the name applied to any theory which holds that absolute knowledge is impossible.

schema

a term from the work of Jean Piaget (1891-1980) for a mental structure or representation that provides a person with a model for action or understanding. These are revised in the light of new experiences and resulting adaptation. (see also accommodation assimilation equilibration operation).

schemes of work

an outdated term for syllabus plans.

school

an institution established for a number of purposes including educational provision.

school choice

a term for the process by which parents are enabled to select a school for their offspring as opposed to being assigned a school by the local authority.

school composition

the nature of a school's role or intake normally as defined by social class or similarsocioeconomic and cultural measures. This has recently been identified as a highly significant factor in a number of key educational issues such ethos and pupil attainment.

school effectiveness

the term for an area of educational research which aims to study and identify aspects of schooling which make a difference looking at such issues as ethos management style leadership and school policies. One result has been the itemising of the characteristics of an effective school and this has itself been the subject of some dispute by those who feel issues to do with a school's socioeconomic context the nature of its intake and school composition are given insufficient attention in such an approach.

school phobia

the condition of having an extreme fear of going to school. It can affect teachers as well as learners.

schooling

a term for the education system as it applies to the primary and secondary sectors. It is a worthwhile term as it creates a distinction from education itself which is one of the aims of schooling a political creation (see deschooling).

scientific

usually applied to the research method which begins with observation the development of ahypothesis and the testing of the hypothesis through experiment. This process may then be repeated as desired or required.

screening

testing for or identifying certain characteristics in objects or people.

seamless learning

this usually refers to the adaption of educational material for mobile devices so that the student can continue learning activity, regardless of location and time

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