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Does Authentic Learning Work?: Evaluating an Innovation Project in Upper Secondary Technology Education in Sweden
Linköping University, Department of Social and Welfare Studies, Learning, Aesthetics, Natural science. Linköping University, Faculty of Educational Sciences. (TekNaD)
Linköping University, Department of Science and Technology, Media and Information Technology. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8888-6843
Linköping University, Department of Social and Welfare Studies, Learning, Aesthetics, Natural science. Linköping University, Faculty of Educational Sciences. (TekNaD)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0829-3349
2017 (English)In: PATT 34, Technology & Engineering Education: Fostering the Creativity of Youth Around the Globe, Millersville, PA, 2017, 1-12 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Creativity is widely viewed as a key component of human development. Creativity is part of the “21st century skills” movement as well as a cornerstone of the technology subject in the Swedish school system. Could authentic learning, as described by Herrington, Reeves and Oliver, be one way to promote creativity? In a pilot study conducted in 2016, 13 groups of upper secondary students participated in a five-week authentic innovation project where they cooperated in the design of solutions for real-world problems. This approach mirrors Brown, Collins and Duguid’s statement that in order to learn a subject, students need more than abilities that focus on acquiring abstract concepts; they need to use and apply conceptual tools while performing authentic activities. The outcome of the innovation project was displayed and presented at an exhibition where professional inventors provided feedback on students’ created solutions. This paper presents results from the pilot study as well as preliminary findings from a main study, involving 25 groups, currently underway. Data from the pilot study was collected through questionnaires after each lesson, following the five-week module, and at the end of the entire course, as well as through semi-structured interviews with nine students. The results from the pilot study indicate that the students perceived the project as being authentic, and departed the course with an increased sense of comprehension and understanding. Future studies will explore learning activity within groups, and differences between students’ and teachers’ understanding of authenticity.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Millersville, PA, 2017. 1-12 p.
Keyword [en]
Technology education, Upper secondary school, Authentic learning, Innovation
National Category
Didactics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-139789OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-139789DiVA: diva2:1133581
Conference
PATT, Pupils' Attitudes Towards Technology, Philadelphia, 10-14 July, 2017
Available from: 2017-08-16 Created: 2017-08-16 Last updated: 2017-08-17Bibliographically approved

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