How my multiple border crossings in higher education have contributed to my living theory
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I am Irish by birth and upbringing. I studied and taught Philosophy and Theology in Italy (1994-2004), where I experienced and used traditional lecturing methods. Currently I teach Philosophy to undergraduates from various disciplines at Strathmore University in Nairobi. My multiple border crossings torespond proactively to diversity and the need for transformational learning in higher education really began upon my arrival in Kenya in 2004, when I faced challenges which I had to overcome to be effective in my teaching practice. In this paper I show how I am using living theory action research to develop a “living” methodology based on in-depth reflection onmy teaching experience and student feedback over time, to adjust various aspectsof my teaching practice to foster transformative learning in my students. This process has enabled me to identify the educational values which motivate my work and which are now the standards of judgement against which I evaluate the effectiveness of my practice. As I narrate my response to some of the more relevant challenges faced, using specifically designed learning projects, I will show how my personalliving educational theory has developed. I hope to show that true effectiveness in“crossing borders for change in higher education” can only be achieved if we are willing to change ourselves in practice in the first place, and so be in a position to help our students want to change themselves and contribute to improving our society.