These methods invite learners to step outside their own social, political, professional background and reflect on a topic having other's perspectives in mind. It is a call for self-othering in order not to other and exclude others. Within dominant academic and professional contexts, these methods represent a welcome step away from self-centeredness and step towards understanding subaltern perspectives, through role-playing and similar methods.
The method is a “knowledge-sharing-speed-dating” in which the group of participants is separated into two groups - 1 moving group and 1 static group. The idea is to fix a time frame for 2 people to discuss a text/concept/ experience, to ask them to produce something from this short discussion (e.g. 2 words from the text) and then change stations. In the end these chosen words or outcomes can be used to either open up the discussion or to create a text or other material. Expected outcome of this method is to widen the discussions between participants to include all relevant perspectives that concern the proposed starting point (text, concept or other).
Role-play is an instructional method based on experiential learning theory, which posits that learning by experience and reflection are best ways for adults to learn. It is a method “in which key ideas and skills are illustrated or practised by learners assuming roles and contexts in which the ideas and skills would typically be applied” (Reigeluth and Keller, 2009, p. 37). In role play, learners act out specific roles in a real-world scenario, to experience and exercise how to act in real-life situations, to develop and test specific skills required to handle a particular situation or problem, as well as to put themselves in positions or identities other than their own.
The method engages participants in exploring and researching the topic/problem/issue, building their arguments and story line for or against a specific position. It gives inputs as well as a lot of freedom to participants in building knowledge on the topic, finding sources and debating etc. The method is excellent for dealing with issues and topics that are divisive and contested in a society or a particular professional field, as well as with trends in a professional field that are pushed with no space to be critically examined and thought through (such as audience development and citizen participation in culture). It is suited for different cultural backgrounds and age, but it requires reading skills and time to explore the topic.