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INSPIRING EDUCATION | oise.utoronto.ca
Act I Scene I

Student Voices- Burcu Yaman Ntelioglou


My name is Burcu Yaman Ntelioglou. I’ve had the privilege of working, teaching, and researching with Professor Kathleen Gallagher throughout my PhD degree. One of these projects that I had the honour of being a part of and which has greatly influenced me is the Urban School Performances Project. My own research was part of this larger international research project, which examined how the relationships among culture, identity, multicultural policies, equity policies, and student engagement, have an impact on the lives of youth in schools and communities traditionally labeled as ‘disadvantaged’ in the cities of Toronto, Canada, Lucknow, India, Taipei, Taiwan, and Boston USA.


In the context of this larger study my own project looked at the experiences of linguistically and culturally diverse students and their teachers in the urban schools in our Toronto sites.


Collaboration was an important feature of my own work and was strongly influenced by the collaborative methodologies that we had been using in the USP project. In the USP project, instead of the traditional top-down decision making processes, we always worked collaboratively. From the proposal writing stage, to framing interview questions, to coding, to observing, interviewing, and finally to critical analysis, collaborative analysis and collaborative writing. We used collaborative writing as a method to deeply examine our thinking, our data, and our observations about our sites. As researchers and educators our diverse backgrounds, our linguistic and cultural histories, have greatly informed the way we look at the data together. And in her USP project, Kathleen made sure to embrace all of our different perspectives and expertises. And in her book, Methodological Dilemmas, Professor Gallagher writes about “polyvocality”. She says that this kind of polyvocality challenges the primacy of any one researcher’s interpretation and resists the closed interpretation.


The USP project has impacted my own research in multiple ways. And one of these aspects is the focus on participatory methodology with the hopes of co-constructing knowledge with our participants as our co-researchers. And the other aspect is experimenting with multiple digital technologies in order to share data across sites and in order to analyze our multiple data across sites. So all of these aspects have greatly informed me and helped me to develop as a researcher and as an educator and I know that I’ll continue to draw on these rich experiences in my future teaching and research. Thank you. 

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