University Of Tasmania

File(s) under permanent embargo

Is it the teaching or the discipline? Influences of disciplinary epistemology and pedagogy on students adapting study behaviour and epistemological beliefs

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-18, 02:10 authored by David KemberDavid Kember, Hong, C, Yau, V, Ho, A
This study examined the pace and degree of adaptation of study behaviour and personal epistemological beliefs between school and university through interviews with 110 final-year university students. The study took place in Hong Kong, where the highly competitive school system encourages remembering modelling answers for the public examinations; hence, students appear to hold naive epistemological beliefs on entry to university. Developing more sophisticated beliefs appeared to be a pre- or co- requisite to adopting study behaviour more appropriate for university study. The pace and degree of adaptation varied between disciplines and appeared to be influenced by both the nature of knowledge within a discipline and the type of pedagogy adopted. The influences are discussed in terms of a two-by-two framework, ranging from well-established to contested knowledge, and didactic teaching to active student engagement. Cases are given to illustrate each quadrant as well as progressive development. Perceptions or social constructions of disciplinary differences appear to play a part as there were cases where the pedagogy adopted was inconsistent with the nature of knowledge in a discipline.


Publication title

European Journal of Higher Education










Faculty of Education


Taylor & Francis

Place of publication

United Kingdom

Rights statement

Copyright 2014 Taylor & Francis

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Learner and learning not elsewhere classified