Date: 10th March 2018
Venue: Haninge, Sweden
The ResearchED conference in Haninge saw 3 presentations from 4 TERG members. This was the first ResearchED conference at which TERG was represented. What became clear throughout the day was that the mission of ResearchED resonates with the guiding principles of TERG, potentiating progress in practice through the dissemination of use-inspired basic research. This conference manifested as a forum in which a multitude of stakeholders in education had the opportunity to present and converse about realising the aim of an evidence-based educational practice.
Andrew Doyle’s presentation titled ‘Agendas, Influences and Capability: Perspectives on Practice in Design and Technology Education’ was the first contribution by a TERG member. He spoke about part of his PhD research which looks at what effects teachers’ practices by applying the critical lens of “amplifiers and filters” of practice. This research is of particular relevance to the discussion around the realisation of evidenced-based practice in technology education.
Dr Niall Seery and Dr Donal Canty co-presented on the ‘multiple perspectives and applications for the use of ACJ‘ and demonstrated the context of their applied research on the use of ACJ as assessment as learning. They acknowledged this research was the result of their attempt to reconcile the “struggle between learning and assessment’. In the presentation, Niall and Donal re-enacted aspects of the introductory lecture they gave to 1st year initial technology teacher education students in a module aimed at developing students’ own epistemological stance on what is evidence of capability. The role of ACJ in mandating students’ to make explicit their distinctions between evidence of capability was highlighted as critical the students’ development. Their research showing the pedagogical utility of ACJ as an ipsative assessment tool was also showcased.
Jeff Buckley presented on ‘spatial ability and fluid intelligence‘ and the significance of his research regarding these cognitive abilities in STEM education. Specifically, he spoke about the capacity of technology education to act as a unique context for exploring intelligence in education. In considering the relationship between discipline knowledge and domain general cognitive abilities in educational performance, and the fluid nature of knowledge in technology education, Jeff highlighted the potential significance of fluid intelligence and spatial ability in both technology and STEM education.