The article is devoted to the question of studying subject-orientated technologies in the context of educational process at universities. It describes the phenomenon of student’s subjectivity, which, being closely connected with the person’s axiological characteristics and self-organization abilities, has become a necessary social demand for a specialist in the modern world. Literature analysis and knowledge synthesis on the subject allowed denoting the historical role of universities and their characteristics in the new millennium. University’s educational environment is regarded as a factor of forming students’ subjectivity. This becomes possible due to the subject-orientated technologies, among which subject-orientated situations, aiming at achieving student’s own educational result in the course of a specially organized activity, are considered to be the most effective ones. The article denotes the peculiarities of the subject-orientated situations; proves their pedagogical potential and classifies them; points out the possible ways of student’s behaviour in the situation.
Keywords: Professional education,subjectivitysubject-orientated situationssubject-orientated technologies
Education significance awareness lets us regard development of the future professionals’ subjective potential as a leading factor for progressive evolution of modern society. The current situation of tough demands to a person changes the characteristics of his / her inclusion in all life spheres, in particular education; it also actualizes the problem of student’s subjective activity development, which is a personal quality marked by the choice of ways of achieving educational results and building up, on their basis, life and professional prospects.
The real result of education lies in developing student’s ability (future specialist) to see the image of the changing world and to feel like a part of it; to be able to face non-standard situations and to cope with them doing some constructive activity.
The problem of person’s subjectivity formation, despite obvious fundamental character, has some evident applied aspects. One of them is the necessity to establish conditionsfor students to gain personal meanings, values and aims of self-development; to acquire subjectivity as a precondition for their future educational and professional activity.
Subjectivity as a pedagogical phenomenon represents person’s axiological characteristics, marked by productive activity, valuable and meaningful self-organization of student’s behaviour and life creativity regardless of professional field chosen.
Subject-orientatedtechnologiesofprofessionaleducationarebasedonnecessityofgiving the content of education personally valuable sense. This sense, accepted by a student, specifies the guidelines of his future educational and professional activity; contributes to making constructive decisions both of personal and social significance.
This idea originates from the support of the new content of education as the basis for including axiological structures of the mind, realizing the phenomenon of “being an identity” in the act of self-organization ( Kiryakova, Olkhovaya, & Rodionova, 2015). For this a mind doesn’t have toonly use the memorized knowledge but it is also obliged to find some sense in it, to correlate its essence with its actual meaning, to set cause-and-effect and intuitive relationship, i.e. realize valuable and meaningful self-organization as the basis of educational and professional activity.The value-orientation system forms the content side of a personality’s thrust and expresses the inside of its attitude to the reality. Values contribute to the person’s behaviour and relationship of all the participants in the educational and professional processes ( Kiryakova & Beroeva, 2016).
The modern world can be characterized as an open, dynamic, ever-accelerating, non-stable one, with the increasing likelihood of incredible events. In these conditions personal values become student’s guidelines that help him to find his way in life and give energy for transforming oneself and the world around. The content of values is constantly changing; they are gaining new characteristics which reflect the distinguishing marks of our times. Values – the creation of time and space; the result of human activity, person’s reflection of his place in the universe; the basis for person’s subjectivity formation ( Olkhovaya & Mazova, 2010).
The study of the subject-orientated technologies in professional education includes the following tasks:
to characterize educational environment of modern universities and to prove an important role of the subject-orientated technologies in professional education;
to describe subject-orientated situations as one of the mechanisms of forming student’s subjectivity and to point out their characteristics;
to classify subject-orientated situations according to their peculiarities and developed skills;
-to describe possible ways of student’s behaviour in a situation.
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of the study is to identify the role and functioning of the subject-orientated technologies in modern professional education, to find out the most effective ones.
Work on research questions to achieve the purpose of the study was carried out with the following methods:
theoretical (Russian and foreign literature analysis, including Internet information search on different aspects of the research problem; synthesis of knowledge);
experimental (interview, conversation, questionnaire; test; observation, pedagogical experience synthesis).
Theoretical analysis of scientific resources on the problem of university education allows to claim that up-to-date university is a space where conditions for the person’s survival in the modern unpredictable world are provided.
Historical role of the universities is scientific knowledge accumulation, attraction of the unique minds, generation of new scientific paradigms, creating the new ways of getting knowledge. Furthermore, the most important role of the university has always been the upbringing of new generation of scientists, having some knew knowledge, and specialists, being able to preserve it and to apply it in practice ( Olkhovaya & Gunkov, 2017).
At universities there has always been specific intellectual informational environment where new ideas, meeting social needs and requirements, have been generated and developed. For instance, university of the new millennium can be characterized by the growing number of trans disciplinary studies ( Vissema, 2015); great popularity of business, research and commercial activity ( Rozovski, 2015); globalization and modernization of scientific activity in order to create opportunities for self-realization of participants in the educational process and provide economic and social goods production on priority areas for university, region and country ( Mardzhinson, 2014; Barber & Donnelly, 2013). Thus, the university education mission is to prepare a person for life in the up-to-date world; to provoke ambiguity in students’ minds and existence; to train them for productive life ( Barnett, 2001).
Education – is a quintessence of the world, explored by a personality; the only form of development, the category of existence ( Davydov, 1986). Such interpretation of this notion allows overcoming purely instrumental, pragmatic approach to knowledge use and understanding person’s education as development of an individual, unique subject of creative activity.
Regarding university’s educational environment as a factor of forming students’ subjectivity, it is necessary to mark its following characteristics:
components, including both individual and collaborative subjects, their interconnection and structural links;
deliberate creating of educational environment and its ability to change;
the opportunities superior to the subject’s needs at the present moment that provide a possibility to choose;
the pedagogical feasibility of environmental organization; due to its flexibility there are zones of irregularity, where new values, forms, methods and content originate from ( Danushenkov & Ivanova, 2004).
Considering subject-orientated technologies in professional education it is important to contrast the notions «university educational environment» and «student’s educational environment». The last notion is understood as a part of university educational environment, actualized by student, a definite result of exploring the world, a degree of cognition and attribution of opportunities on the basis of subjective experience. It is impossible for a person to master all the cultural and scientific environment of the modern world in the process of education. Therefore, student’s educational environment represents a part of cultural and scientific environment, where, due to the meeting of a person who is teaching and the one who is taught, the aims are formed, future life models are projected, searching and gaining of meanings are fulfilled. University educational environment becomes both a subject and a source for the teacher and student’s common activity. The professor as «the other person who is important» helps student to realize the peculiarities and contradictions of the real world, to master the ways of living there, to manage space and time of the life. In this regard, it is important to consider the style of teacher-student interaction, which is characterized by interest and creativity and results in subject-subject interaction, essential for the participants in the pedagogical process ( Olkhovaya & Khabarova, 2015).
To our mind, the most effective technology for achieving this aim is modeling subject-orientated educational situations.
Subject-orientated situations – are specially generated pedagogical situations (fragments of educational process), actualizing the display of subjective qualities, drawing on subjective experience, having great potential for manifestation of student’s subjective position.
In the context of projecting subject-orientated educational technologies, we consider it important to correlate the notions «life situation» and «educational situation». For defining them it is necessary to refer to the problem of a personalization: whether situation gets developing, transforming content; whether it depends on personal perception, evaluation and behaviour in the situation.
Situation is always a space-time characteristic of the subject’s being. Educational situation can’t occur accidentally, it is usually designed purposefully. Educational situation is a specific pedagogical mechanism, which puts a student into new conditions, transforming habitual way of his educational activity. It activates new behaviour model characterized by actualized student’s subjective position, his orientation aimed at searching for values and meanings of the knowledge being gained.
The aim of the educational situation is to provide achieving by students their own educational result (ideas, problems, hypotheses, versions, schemes, experience, and texts) in the course of specially organized activity. It is also essential for student’s subjectivity formation not only to gain unique experience while working on the situation, but to take part in the reflexive analysis of the process and its results ( Platova, 2018). Identifying one’s own position in the interaction and demonstrating one’s subjective position in the suggested conditions, gradual sophistication of the situations, increasing student’s autonomy – all these processes contribute to the activisation of student’s reflexive activity ( Platova, 2017). The cycle of educational situation includes the following technological elements: motivation for the activity, setting the problem, taking decisions to solve the problem, presentation of educational products, results of reflexing.
The main features characterizing subject-orientated situations in the educational process at university are: the natural occurrence; the absence of enforcing students to taking part in them; providing psycho-pedagogical conditions encouraging for the subjective activity. Different kinds of educational tasks and assignments are the means of students’ involvement in corresponding situations. Subject-orientated situations are aimed at activating the mechanism of forming students’ subjectivity. We assume that these situations have both subject-developing and experimental-diagnostic functions.
Subject-orientated situations are naturally fit in pedagogical reality and in total they make up a technology-based educational environment, focused on subjectivity development as a personality’s education. The task to make university professor’s activity a technology-based one is quite difficult. But it turns much more complicated when it comes to development of student’s subjective functions. Pedagogical reality is always more challenging than pedagogical theory and it is constantly changing. Thus, the adequate theoretical modeling of pedagogical phenomena is close to impossible. In this research we attempted to describe the content of subject-orientated technologies briefly and schematically.
For research purposes subject-orientated situations were conditionally divided into several groups:
problem situations (gaining work experience on the basis of ambiguous information in different kinds of activity and different relationship systems);
reflexive situations (awareness of oneself, one’s own experience; evaluation of one’s own actions, other students’ and teacher’s actions; getting new personal knowledge, gaining subjective experience);
creative situations (creating the conditions of «uncertainty» as a precondition of getting to the subject-creative level of problem solving);
communicative situations (accession to value orientations, creating mood and emotions, adequate to the character of subjects’ interaction; the possibility of creating a referent group of «important people»);
situations of free choice (launching the correlation mechanism of the external and internal plan of student’s vital activity; creating the conditions of necessity of taking personally important decisions, actualizing formation of the student’s subjectivity);
situations of self-organization (the optimal use of subjectivity potential, i.e. maximum use of student’s own abilities, valuable management of one’s own activity, overcoming external circumstances).
These situations have the following characteristics:
subject-orientated situations contain several ways of their realization that provides points of bifurcation, «points of growth» as possible directions of student’s self-creation activity;
the situations admit different levels of subjective inclusion, providing, in this way, the autonomy of a personality and non-interference in the internal space;
the situations presuppose gaining subjective experience and self-regulation skills by students;
the situations are focused on launching the mechanisms of value orientation and self-organization which are potentially represented in the personal student’s system.
Considering student’s interaction with educational situation it is necessary to point out the following aspects ( Olkhovaya, 2017):
the degree of student’s adequate perception of the situation;
self-awareness in the situation, finding out and giving sense to the situation;
setting aims and values, reflected in worries about «what I need»;
willingness to achieve the aims, motivation, demonstrated as «I want»;
correlation of the positions, mentioned above, with one’s own subjective potential, displayed as «I can».
In each situation these aspects can be represented differently and they are usually defined by the following conditions:
student’s individual characteristics such as level of educational competency; personal development and subjective maturity; mobility degree; self-consciousness;
objective set of circumstances in the situation;
peculiarities of student’s value self-determination.
Depending on the level of perception of the situation and determination to act, a student can choose different behaviour ways that can be conditionally divided into two main groups:
acquisition of subjectivity – the student behaves adequately, interacts with the situation successfully, realizes his subjective potential, satisfies his actualized educational needs, seeks to the values of personal and professional growth;
loss of subjectivity – the student demonstrates inadequate behaviour: manifests senseless, ineffective, fussy activity, or, the opposite, the person is unreasonably inactive. As a rule, in this situation the aims remain unachieved, the needs – unrealized. The result of it, especially in case of reoccurrence, is the absence of ability to self-regulate one’s behaviour – the responsibility for life problems is usually attached to the outside world, but not to oneself.
Subject-orientated technologies of professional education provide personal-professional formation of the future specialist that is carried out on the basis of the previous student’s achievements, taking into account his abilities, ambitions and expectations; it also provides value resonance of the student’s perception of oneself and the world around. These technologies create conditions for the realization of student’s personal basic needs in cognition and understanding oneself and the world, self-realization, self-creation, reflection; they contribute to finding out life-important value orientations.
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20 April 2020
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Olkhovaya, T. A., & Platova, E. D. (2020). Subject-Orientated Technologies In Professional Education. In A. Pavlova (Ed.), Philological Readings, vol 83. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 216-223). European Publisher. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2020.04.02.24