BUILDING RESPONSIBLE RESEARCH AND INNOVATION SKILLS: A DIGITAL REPOSITORY FOR STEM TEACHERS
Universitat de Barcelona (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Conference name: 10th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2016
Location: Valencia, Spain
Abstract:Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) is a European Policy aiming to bridge the gap between research and citizens, thus contributing to aligning the research activities with the values and priorities to the society in which they are developed. This is an approach is worth adopting by STEM teachers, since it is an opportunity to help students acquire RRI skills as a new way to understand science in the context of society. However, it also sets out a challenge because new teaching methods and learning activities must be used in order to help students to develop these skills.
The ENGAGE project aims to develop Open Educational Resources (OER) helping teachers to foster students' RRI skills. The project also offers online teacher training and it follows the use of the materials in the classroom.
These strategies follow a model in which teachers progressively become more committed to include RRI in their practice. The model aims to have an impact on teachers' Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK). At a first stage, basic OER are published, which enable to implement one lesson based on a scientific controversy from the news. Second, we publish advanced materials, which cover longer classroom time and preparation. Finally, very advanced OER will be available, which enable teachers to guide students in carrying out projects in collaboration with researchers.
In this article, we present the preliminary results of a one-year long study showing how teachers use the repository and engage in online learning activities. Quantitative data has been collected in terms of registrations, downloads, most popular OER, and visits to the site, among others. This information is complemented with qualitative data coming from user comments, which shows strengths and weaknesses regarding their content, format, and impact on teachers' PCK.
Results suggest that the repository is a suitable support for 1) downloading OER, 2) hosting a Community of Practice (CoP) and 3) perform online teacher training activities. For this reason, such ICT-based strategy has proven to be in several ways effective to help teachers to build their RRI teaching skills.
Keywords: STEM, Pedagogical Content Knowledge, Responsible Research and Innovation, Community of Practice, Online learning, teacher continuing professional development.