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Pedagogical Responsiveness in Complex Contexts

Walton, Elizabeth; Osman, Ruksana


Ruksana Osman


Ruksana Osman


Responsiveness and complexity are familiar terms in pandemic times. When applied to education, they take on particular meanings separately and in combination. This chapter shows education complexified by a number of factors, including governance and policy, system actors, knowledge claims, and information and communications technologies and artificial intelligence. These factors are agentic and interrelate in networked but non-linear ways that can be understood as general complexity. The challenge is to be pedagogically responsive within complex contexts. Pedagogical responsiveness is characterised by inclusivity and a focus on students, knowledge work, dialogue and relationality, a community orientation, and social justice and equity. It is enabled by collaboration and relational agency, epistemic engagement, contextual sensitivity, technology, institutional capacity and Ubuntu. We show that being pedagogically responsive within a restricted view of complexity leads to an efficacy, or “what works” approach, being pedagogically irresponsive with a restricted view of complexity leads to conservatism and preservation of the status quo. A general view of complexity with pedagogical irresponsiveness leads to inertia, but transformation is possible with optimal pedagogical responsiveness within a general view of complexity. The contributions of the various chapters to this volume gesture towards the possibility of transformed and inclusive global educational futures.


Walton, E., & Osman, R. (2022). Pedagogical Responsiveness in Complex Contexts. In E. Walton, & R. Osman (Eds.), Pedagogical Responsiveness in Complex Contexts: Issues of Transformation, Inclusion and Equity (1-20). Springer.

Acceptance Date Jun 15, 2022
Online Publication Date Sep 23, 2022
Publication Date 2022
Deposit Date Sep 24, 2022
Publicly Available Date Sep 24, 2023
Publisher Springer International Publishing
Pages 1-20
Series Title Inclusive Learning and Educational Equity
Series Number 9
Series ISSN 2512-1510
Book Title Pedagogical Responsiveness in Complex Contexts: Issues of Transformation, Inclusion and Equity
Chapter Number 1
ISBN 9783031127175
Public URL
Publisher URL


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