Renate is a postdoctoral fellow at CHES, where her research focuses on the relationship between what learners in the health professions know and what they do in their professional or educational practice. Learners often believe or learn one thing, but do something different when faced with the pressures and complexities of putting knowledge into practice “out there.” Others act on what they know or believe despite institutional or social barriers. In instructional design, this is called conative learning – learning associated with the will or ability to act on knowledge. This type of learning is influenced by many different cognitive, affective, social, and structural factors that come together in unique ways, and is deeply embedded within the context of practice.
Renate completed a PhD in Educational Administration and Leadership at the University of Alberta in 2015. Her dissertation research focused on the ways in which health professional educators understand the term “critical thinking.” The term is understood in different ways by different people and in different contexts; this diversity is also reflective of diverse values and beliefs with respect to what constitutes “good thinking” in a given profession or practice context.
Renate also teaches in Adult and Higher Education. Topics taught include: learning theory, teaching philosophies, and instructional design and technology. She uses community-service learning and other authentic assessment approaches in her teaching.