Threshold concepts and troublesome knowledge (2): Epistemological considerations and a conceptual framework for teaching and learning

Jan Meyer, Ray Land

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    637 Citations (Scopus)


    The present study builds on earlier work by Meyer and Land (2003) which introduced the generative notion of threshold concepts within (and across) disciplines, in the sense of transforming the internal view of subject matter or part thereof. In this earlier work such concepts were further linked to forms of knowledge that are 'troublesome', after the work of Perkins (1999). It was argued that these twinned sets of ideas may define critical moments of irreversible conceptual transformation in the educational experiences of learners, and their teachers. The present study aims (a) to examine the extent to which such phenomena can be located within personal understandings of discipline-specific epistemological discourses, (b) to develop more extensively notions of liminality within learning that were raised in the first paper, and (c) to propose a conceptual framework within which teachers may advance their own reflective practice.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)373-388
    Number of pages15
    JournalHigher Education
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Apr 2005


    • threshold concepts
    • troublesome knowledge
    • identity
    • liminality
    • mimicry
    • pre-liminal variation

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