I certainly could have done better with constructing the session itself, since I was still figuring out, up to the moment it started, how to best get across the material (and spirit) to an audience of practitioners rather than researchers. I spent more time than I realized (or wanted) on the presentation part before moving to the exercise part. This wasn't missed by the participants, and for any who may read this, my apologies. I learned quite a bit about how to do it better the next time I get such an opportunity (and I'm looking forward to doing this a lot more once I get the PhD done!).
Still, according to the comments, most felt there was some value in the session. I did some quick scoring. Of the 22 participants that completed an evaulation (there were about 40 in the room for the session), 15 (68.2%) were overall positive, 4 (18.2%) were at least partially positive, and 3 (13.6%) were clearly negative. Of the 80 total comments supplied to the 6 questions, 59 (73.8%) were positive, 6 (7.5%) were negative, and 15 (18.8%) were mixed or ambiguous. Excluding the 15 mixed/ambiguous, 90.8% were positive and 9.2% were negative.
More significantly for the research itself, though, it is pretty clear from the comments that the concepts resonated with the audience, which is encouraging.
- "He really has thought about the heart of our profession"
- "A new way to think about group work"
- "In every way -- This opens whole new worlds for me -- "
- "I liked the clarity of the heat maps"
- "Participatory practice could be a whole other domain to explore. This framework could be really interesting in educational settings!"
- "METAPHORS that emerged as the session/ideas unfolded: - the 'dance' between practitioner/participants; - the unfolding of a real time event as wild kayak paddle down a turbulent river"
- "Constantly linking aesthetics & ethics"
- "coherence, engagement + usefulness resonate as criteria that could be applied to many processes, i.e. teaching"
Thanks again to Jan Spaulding for putting together the evaluations.