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Working with Gordon Pask (1967-1978): Developing and Applying Conversation Theory*

Working with Gordon Pask (1967-1978): Developing and Applying Conversation Theory*
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Author(s): Bernard Scott (Cranfield University, UK)
Copyright: 2008
Pages: 16
Source title: Handbook of Conversation Design for Instructional Applications
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Rocci Luppicini (University of Ottawa, Canada)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-597-9.ch002

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Abstract

Conversation Theory was conceived and developed by Gordon Pask in the days when he was Research Director of System Research Ltd, a non-profit research organisation founded in the 1950’s. I worked with Gordon at System Research Ltd between 1968 and 1978. Here, I give a personalised account of the development of Conversation Theory and its applications as I observed and participated in them during those years. Conversation Theory is reflexive: it explains the observer to himself. Being party to its development was a journey of self-discovery and self-invention in which Gordon was my guide and mentor. I have ordered my account chronologically; I have also tried to show how Conversation Theory evolved in a “boot-strapping” manner as a tool and as an explanation of its own significance. Gordon, par excellence, knew how to foster creative conversation and “moments of excellence”.

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