Approaches to Student Voice: ‘Empowerment’, ‘Evidence-based Practice’ and Participation



This chapter explores the rationale for democratic student agency. In the first section, we problematise the dual and widely adopted notions of ‘student empowerment’ and ‘evidence-based practice’ as framing devices for student voice initiatives, and consider as a cautious alternative Michael Fielding’s ‘patterns of partnership’ model as introduced in Chap. 1, which, we posit, provides a possible means of navigating the difficulties we see in the earlier two conceptualisations. We then consider what this approach might mean for the involvement of children and young people in research and inquiry and point to some implications of young people’s active engagement in dialogue and decision making about their education for classroom practice and pedagogy.


Empowerment Evidence-based practice Partnership Participation 

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of NewcastleOurimbahAustralia
  2. 2.University of SydneySydneyAustralia

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