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Educ. Sci., Volume 10, Issue 3 (March 2020) – 39 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): This paper looks at the effects of an intervention, based on fluency oriented reading instruction (FORI), on the motivation for reading among struggling readers in Irish primary schools. The intervention took place in learning support settings in three primary schools located in urban educationally disadvantaged communities in North Dublin. The study, conducted through a pragmatic lens, employed a mixed methods design with a concurrent triangulation strategy. The study was guided by a reading motivation perspective, recognising the overlapping influences of teachers, parents and the individual student. Findings indicate that the FORI intervention had a positive impact on the motivation to read for struggling readers. In particular, the intervention was found to decrease students’ perceived difficulty with reading and increase their reading self-efficacy and orientation towards reading. View this paper.
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Article
Gender and Digital Teaching Competence in Dual Vocational Education and Training
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 84; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030084 - 24 Mar 2020
Cited by 22 | Viewed by 2986
Abstract
In recent decades, technological advances have been revolutionizing all areas of society, including the teaching resources and methodologies used in the world of education. Teachers are in the process of adapting to develop the digital skills they need for the use of Information [...] Read more.
In recent decades, technological advances have been revolutionizing all areas of society, including the teaching resources and methodologies used in the world of education. Teachers are in the process of adapting to develop the digital skills they need for the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs), a process that must be permanent and in which there are still knowledge gaps undermining its application. This study aims to determine whether this lack of digital skills is influenced by the gender of teachers, for example, whether there is a gender gap in ICT application in teaching, specifically Dual Vocational Education and Training, which is a teaching area that has been growing exponentially in recent years. A descriptive quantitative method has been used for this study with a sample of 1568 teachers of Dual Vocational Education and Training from the Autonomous Community of Andalusia, with data collected through a questionnaire. The results show that while the level of knowledge of ICT resources is medium among this group and is therefore improvable, there are no significant gender differences between teachers with respect to the application of e-skills by teaching professionals, despite the existence in other contexts of a large digital gender gap in new technology professionals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Digital Learning in Open and Flexible Environments)
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Article
Dealing with Academic Difficulty in Medical School: A Pilot Study
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 83; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030083 - 23 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1814
Abstract
Some students struggle through medical school and do not have the confidence to seek help. This pilot study sought to explore the challenges and needs of medical students experiencing academic difficulty. Semi-structured interviews and online surveys were used to collect data from an [...] Read more.
Some students struggle through medical school and do not have the confidence to seek help. This pilot study sought to explore the challenges and needs of medical students experiencing academic difficulty. Semi-structured interviews and online surveys were used to collect data from an academic advisor and thirteen medical students who had experienced academic difficulty. Unexpected academic failure and the loss of self-efficacy contributed to students hiding their academic difficulty and avoiding available support systems. Despite the sampling limitations, the findings of this pilot study have value in giving direction to future research. Programs that will change the current attitudes to academic difficulty, normalising access to support and encouraging early intervention, are needed to build the capacity for excellence among these students. Full article
Article
Concept Mapping in the Age of Deleuze: Fresh Perspectives and New Challenges
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 82; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030082 - 21 Mar 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 5168
Abstract
This conceptual paper offers a reconsideration of the application of Novakian concept mapping to higher education research by putting to work the Deleuzian concept of the rhizome. We ask: what does thinking with Deleuze’s concepts offer researchers interested in concept mapping, and what [...] Read more.
This conceptual paper offers a reconsideration of the application of Novakian concept mapping to higher education research by putting to work the Deleuzian concept of the rhizome. We ask: what does thinking with Deleuze’s concepts offer researchers interested in concept mapping, and what conceptual, and terminological, obstacles might be created through such a reconceptualization? We have focused on the rhizomatic principles of mapping and tracing in the context of concept mapping. We contend that Deleuze offers a fresh line of flight with the potential to deterritorialise the discourse surrounding concept mapping, thus widening its applicability and increasing its accessibility to researchers who do not necessarily share the same arborescent concept mapping heritage: with its roots in science education. Exploring the overlap between rhizomatics and concept mapping also allows for the reappraisal and blurring of the boundary between structural and post-structural discourses—breaking down an unproductive binary in the literature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pedagogic Health and the University)
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Article
Teacher Training in Intercultural Education: Teacher Perceptions
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 81; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030081 - 20 Mar 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2557
Abstract
Background: The aim of the present study was to evaluate teacher perceptions on the training received in intercultural education. Methods: The article presents a quantitative, non- experimental and ex-post-facto type of research; directed to inquire about the perceptions of the teachers of primary [...] Read more.
Background: The aim of the present study was to evaluate teacher perceptions on the training received in intercultural education. Methods: The article presents a quantitative, non- experimental and ex-post-facto type of research; directed to inquire about the perceptions of the teachers of primary education in Andalusia (Spain) in relation to the intercultural training received. Based on the descriptive survey method, two questionnaires were administered to a sample composed of 320 students and 80 teachers. Results: The results show certain strengths of the training teacher programs in the field of interculturality (encouragement of reflection, participation and collaboration …), as well as weaknesses (decontextualization, inflexibility, primacy of theoretical learning, non-transversal character, etc.). Conclusions: Despite strengths, intercultural teacher training continues to be a challenge in Andalusia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Intercultural Education)
Article
An Analysis of Students’ Cognitive Bias in Experimental Activities Following a Lab Manual
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 80; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030080 - 20 Mar 2020
Viewed by 1572
Abstract
The purpose of this study is to develop a thinking process model that reveals cognitive bias through analyzing students’ cognitive biases in processing experimental manuals. Twenty-two college students participated in the study. During the “making electromagnets” experimental activity, we collected students’ concurrent verbal [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study is to develop a thinking process model that reveals cognitive bias through analyzing students’ cognitive biases in processing experimental manuals. Twenty-two college students participated in the study. During the “making electromagnets” experimental activity, we collected students’ concurrent verbal protocols, gaze positions, and experimental behaviors. After the experiment, we collected their retrospective verbal protocols and ensured reliability by diversifying the data. The collected data were analyzed inductively using the grounded theory methodology. The results showed that four categories of paradigm (causal conditions, phenomena, interactions, and contextual conditions) and fifteen concepts were derived. Students displayed bias in following the manual instructions due to the influence of causal conditions. When embodying biased representations as workspace entities, biased responses come from the influence of contextual conditions. Therefore, these can be developed in consideration of causal and contextual conditions when developing a manual, thereby reducing cognitive bias among students, and ultimately helping them perform accurate experiments. Full article
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Article
In Practice: The Importance of Practitioner Research in Vocational Education
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030079 - 20 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1707
Abstract
This article presents the background to and rationale for a practice-focused model of educational change and improvement. In contrast to autocratic top-down models, this democratic and pragmatic approach begins with the educational concerns of teachers. In this model, responsibility and accountability for educational [...] Read more.
This article presents the background to and rationale for a practice-focused model of educational change and improvement. In contrast to autocratic top-down models, this democratic and pragmatic approach begins with the educational concerns of teachers. In this model, responsibility and accountability for educational improvement is shared between policy professionals, the university team and sector practitioners. Contributions from the literature explore the question of the nature and purpose of educational practice; how concepts of educational practice influence curriculum design and content in programmes for the initial and continuing professional development for teachers of vocational education; and how these can enhance or inhibit the improvement of educational practice. Drawing upon case study examples from a national programme of university-supported practitioner research in England, results illustrate how this model offers insights into ways of increasing research capacity and achieving sustainable improvements in educational practice. It concludes that programmes of university-supported practitioner research, which encourage and enable teachers to engage in the systematic investigation of educational practice, can realize educational improvements which other approaches to educational evaluation and improvement (including external inspection regimes) struggle to do. It invites politicians and policy professionals to consider potential applications of this approach in other national systems of vocational education. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Post-Compulsory Education)
Review
Digital Learning Environments in Higher Education: A Literature Review of the Role of Individual vs. Social Settings for Measuring Learning Outcomes
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 78; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030078 - 18 Mar 2020
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 3503
Abstract
Research on digital learning environments has traditionally applied either an individual perspective or a social perspective to learning. Based on a literature review, we examined to what extent individual or social perspectives determined the learning outcome variables that researchers have used as measurements [...] Read more.
Research on digital learning environments has traditionally applied either an individual perspective or a social perspective to learning. Based on a literature review, we examined to what extent individual or social perspectives determined the learning outcome variables that researchers have used as measurements in existing studies. We analyzed prototypical approaches to operationalize learning settings (individual vs. social) published in peer-reviewed journals and identified their relation to several measures of learning outcomes. We rated n = 356 articles and included n = 246 articles in the final analysis. A total of 159 studies (64.6%) used an individual learning setting, while 87 studies (35.4%) used a social learning setting. As learning outcome measures, we observed self-reports, observable behavior, learning skills, elaboration, personal initiatives, digital activity, and social interactions. The two types of learning settings differed regarding the measurement of elaboration and social interactions. We discuss of the implications of our findings for future research and conclude that researchers should investigate further measures of learning outcomes in digital learning settings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Learning Environments)
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Article
The Factors Influencing Urban Health Services among Ethnic Groups in the U.S.
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030077 - 17 Mar 2020
Viewed by 1483
Abstract
The purpose of this study is to conduct a non-systematic meth-analysis of a literature review by way of reviewing research that was found in any databases under the terms “urban health services” in order to document the major factors influencing urban health among [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study is to conduct a non-systematic meth-analysis of a literature review by way of reviewing research that was found in any databases under the terms “urban health services” in order to document the major factors influencing urban health among minorities; and if there are any policies that promote health and prevent disease. Data from current the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the World Health Organization also provided significant findings. This study also explores the underlying conditions and root causes contributing to health inequities and the interdependent nature of the factors that create them, by drawing from existing literature and syntheses on health disparities and health inequities. Even though public services, such as health and health service provisions in urban areas may be much better than those in rural areas, it has not been proven if it is the case for less disadvantaged populations living in the urban cities. This study highlights many of the issues leading to health inequities, such as social economic status, ethnicity, and age differences. There is a need to reduce health inequities among high-middle and low-income groups by providing or equalizing health opportunities across the socioeconomic groups. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban/City Schools)
Article
Pre-Service Teachers’ Declarative Knowledge of Wave-Particle Dualism of Electrons and Photons: Finding Lexicons by Using Network Analysis
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030076 - 17 Mar 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1679
Abstract
Learning the wave-particle dualism of electrons and photons plays a central role in understanding quantum physics. Teaching it requires that the teacher is fluent in using abstract and uncommon terms. We inspect the lexical structures of pre-service teachers’ declarative knowledge about the wave-particle [...] Read more.
Learning the wave-particle dualism of electrons and photons plays a central role in understanding quantum physics. Teaching it requires that the teacher is fluent in using abstract and uncommon terms. We inspect the lexical structures of pre-service teachers’ declarative knowledge about the wave-particle dualism of electrons and photons in the context of double-slit interference. The declarative knowledge is analyzed in the form of a lexical network of terms. We focus on lexical structures because, in teaching and learning, knowledge is communicated mostly through lexical structures, i.e., by speaking and writing. Using the lexical networks, we construct the lexicons used by pre-service teachers to express their knowledge of electrons and photons in the context of double-slit interference. The lexicons consist of eight different key terms, each representing a set of closely-related or synonymous terms. The lexicons by 14 pre-service teachers reveal remarkable variation and differences, and are strongly context-dependent. We also analyzed lexicons corresponding to two didactically-oriented research articles on the same topic and found that they also differ. Lexicons paralleling both texts are found among the pre-service teachers’ lexicons. However, only some of the pre-service teachers use such rich vocabulary as would indicate multi-faceted understanding of quantum entities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Networks Applied in Science Education Research)
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Article
Compulsory School Attendance: The New American Crime
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030075 - 16 Mar 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2715
Abstract
A mom walks up to the District Attorney’s desk in the Justice of the Peace Court with a total of six tickets as a result of her low-income children’s truancy, three in her name and one for each of her three children. She [...] Read more.
A mom walks up to the District Attorney’s desk in the Justice of the Peace Court with a total of six tickets as a result of her low-income children’s truancy, three in her name and one for each of her three children. She faces the possibility of having to pay anywhere from $510 to $2010 in court costs and fines. Luckily for this mother, her children’s cases can be dismissed if she and the children comply with the Judge’s probation terms. In this Court, the court costs are actually at the lowest end of the range for the price established by the state; some judges can charge as much as $150 per case and $500 fines per offense. In this instance, the costs are $85 per person, $340 total for the mother and the three children. Those costs cannot be waived and must be paid, regardless of family income. The judge may waive the fine if the parent and the students complete the community service assigned by the judge. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban/City Schools)
Article
Social Media University Branding
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030074 - 16 Mar 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2910
Abstract
Globalization has increased the demands placed on higher education and increased competition among universities. In response, institutions of higher education have started to consider their online presence as a potential competitive advantage. The aim of this article is to analyze and compare Facebook [...] Read more.
Globalization has increased the demands placed on higher education and increased competition among universities. In response, institutions of higher education have started to consider their online presence as a potential competitive advantage. The aim of this article is to analyze and compare Facebook activity and content created by the world’s top ten universities. The professional social media analytics tool Socialbakers is used to monitor activity and collect data for analysis. The world’s top ten universities are determined based on the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) University Rankings. The study results are divided into four categories: an analysis of the number of fans, of content, of style, and of post promotion. All of the studied universities upload a post at least once per day. Based on the study results, selected posts could be examples of best practice and serve to inspire other educational institutions to improve their brand image and communication on social networks. Social media provide a large amount of detailed data concerning the behavior of students and other stakeholders and on the effectiveness of promotional campaigns. To use social media effectively, it is necessary to collect the available data and evaluate them to gain insight on which to base an appropriate social media strategy Full article
Article
The Thinking Skills Deficit: What Role Does a Poetry Group Have in Developing Critical Thinking Skills for Adult Lifelong Learners in a Further Education Art College?
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030073 - 13 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1713
Abstract
This article investigates Brown’s assertion that students today exhibit an unwillingness/inability to engage in critical thinking (CT). He describes this as a ‘critical thinking deficit’. The question of whether CT can be taught or whether we can only create the conditions in which [...] Read more.
This article investigates Brown’s assertion that students today exhibit an unwillingness/inability to engage in critical thinking (CT). He describes this as a ‘critical thinking deficit’. The question of whether CT can be taught or whether we can only create the conditions in which CT can thrive and develop is explored through analysis of data from a pedagogical intervention of a Poetry Group; it aims to develop CT by employing Community of Inquiry as a methodology. This intervention was offered to a group of Further Education (FE) students over a period of six months with the intention of preparing them for progression into Higher Education (HE). Findings from the study lend support to the claim that sharing stories and poems is helpful in developing social and cultural capital across the group and in supporting CT and academic development. Students in the study report that they found the Poetry Group particularly valuable in encouraging both critical engagement with their Arts subject, deeper levels of learning and supporting improvements in attainment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Post-Compulsory Education)
Article
A Pilot Study to Incorporate Collaboration and Energy Competency into an Engineering Ethics Course
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 72; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030072 - 13 Mar 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1564
Abstract
According to the OECD, The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, and other education policy experts all over the world, an urgent reform is needed to promote education innovation with “competencies” as the core. To investigate the feasibility to apply competency-oriented education, this [...] Read more.
According to the OECD, The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, and other education policy experts all over the world, an urgent reform is needed to promote education innovation with “competencies” as the core. To investigate the feasibility to apply competency-oriented education, this pilot study surveyed the competencies of “collaboration” and “energy” and applied competency-oriented contents into an Engineering Ethics course in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. The literature reveals that collaboration includes three constructs: trust, communication, and coordination. These constructs were used to develop a questionnaire and to survey the collaboration competency of the research subjects. In addition, an energy perception survey for Taiwan was used to compare and analyze the energy competencies between the research subject and the general adults in Taiwan. Finally, some suggestions are proposed for competency implementation in future courses. Full article
Article
Drawn to Story
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 71; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030071 - 13 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1339
Abstract
Rising to the demands of academic writing, scholarship and research is challenging for many practitioners in post compulsory education. Only a small number manage to see their research through to completion and write-up. Therefore, their work is under-represented in peer-reviewed, published literature in [...] Read more.
Rising to the demands of academic writing, scholarship and research is challenging for many practitioners in post compulsory education. Only a small number manage to see their research through to completion and write-up. Therefore, their work is under-represented in peer-reviewed, published literature in the field of educational research. This article foregrounds the role of stories, storytelling and image in the development of different kinds of language, including scholarship and academic writing. Narrative accounts of experiences of practitioner-researchers beginning to engage in research through intensive residential research development workshops, delivered as part of a national Practitioner Research Programme (PRP), are used to illustrate the power of oracy, imagery and story in extending our ability to develop language; research and represent experience; and portray different forms of understanding in a range of educational contexts. The results indicate that being able to listen, read and ‘see’ the research stories of more experienced researchers, as well as telling stories of their own experiences of research, enables participants to become more comfortable in using experiences of educational practice as a starting point for research and to regard research and practice not as a dichotomy or as separate activities, but as dynamic and integral aspects of educational improvement. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Post-Compulsory Education)
Article
How Creativity in STEAM Modules Intervenes with Self-Efficacy and Motivation
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 70; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030070 - 13 Mar 2020
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 4000
Abstract
Many current curricula, in going beyond traditional goals, increasingly foster creativity in science classrooms, declaring creativity a core skill of the 21st century. For enhancing creativity in science classrooms, the subject Arts is considered to offer a potential way from STEM (Science, Technology, [...] Read more.
Many current curricula, in going beyond traditional goals, increasingly foster creativity in science classrooms, declaring creativity a core skill of the 21st century. For enhancing creativity in science classrooms, the subject Arts is considered to offer a potential way from STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) to STEAM (STEM with Arts)). The Horizont-2020 project Creations prepared more than 100 creativity-enhancing STEAM modules based on the 5E instructional model. STEM subjects were mathematics, biology, physics, chemistry or technology, and often interdisciplinary for different school and class levels between the ages of nine and nineteen. All modules provided a social environment fostering creativity where students imagine, explore, experiment, test, manipulate, and speculate. Exemplarily, five modules including physics, math, and biology, were selected, for monitoring motivation and creativity. The first was measured on the level of career-motivation and self-efficacy, the latter focused on two sub-constructs: active cognition such as idea processing (Act), and a mental state of creative immersion (Flow). Subjects were a sample of 995 students (9–18 years). In summary, no gender impact or age effect appeared in any of the monitored variables. Participation intervened with Self-Efficacy and Act, while Career Motivation or Flow did not. Act as a cognitive variable associated with creativity might be more sensitive to changes, whereas Flow as a parameter measuring a state of mind related to emotion appears more stable. Path analysis supported the role of creativity for Career-Motivation by promoting Self-Efficacy. Conclusions for appropriate educational settings to foster STEAM environments are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Trends in STEM Education)
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Article
Parents’, Teachers’ and Principals’ Views on Parental Involvement in Secondary Education Schools in Greece
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 69; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030069 - 11 Mar 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2568
Abstract
The objective of the present study was to investigate parents’, teachers’ and principals’ views on parental involvement (PI) in Secondary Education Schools in Greece. The research was based on a survey among parents (n = 54), teachers (n = 84) and [...] Read more.
The objective of the present study was to investigate parents’, teachers’ and principals’ views on parental involvement (PI) in Secondary Education Schools in Greece. The research was based on a survey among parents (n = 54), teachers (n = 84) and principals (n = 12) in twelve Secondary Education Schools in Magnesia Region in central East Greece. Different views between each group were exhibited on PI in educational issues, decision making or creating links and communication between the school and the local community. Teachers expressed the view that workload and parental attitudes are factors which discourage parental involvement in their school units. Parents felt that teachers’ professionalism, lack of teachers’ training on parental involvement and parents who hesitate talking to teachers were significant barriers for PI in their school units. School principals agreed with parents and teachers on the barriers established due to teachers’ professionalism and parents’ hesitation in talking to teachers as significant factors which discourage PI in their school units. Contrarily to teachers’ views, school principals expressed their willingness to increase PI in teachers’ and school evaluation. School leaders should explore the possibility of organising meetings with teachers and parents to reduce barriers and misconceptions, paving the way for communication between the school unit and parents, increasing the positive outcomes of PI in school management and students’ success. Full article
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Article
Combining Surveys and Sensors to Explore Student Behaviour
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 68; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030068 - 10 Mar 2020
Viewed by 1594
Abstract
Student belongingness is important for successful study paths, and group work forms an important part of modern university physics education. To study the group dynamics of introductory physics students at the University of Helsinki, we collected network data from seven laboratory course sections [...] Read more.
Student belongingness is important for successful study paths, and group work forms an important part of modern university physics education. To study the group dynamics of introductory physics students at the University of Helsinki, we collected network data from seven laboratory course sections of approximately 20 students each for seven consecutive weeks. The data was collected via the SocioPatterns platform, and supplemented with students’ major subject, year of study and gender. We also collected the Mechanics Baseline Test to measure physics knowledge and the Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey to measure attitudes. We developed metrics for studying the small networks of the laboratory sessions by using connections of the teaching assistant as a constant. In the network, we found both demographically homogeneous and heterogeneous groups that are stable. While some students are consistently loosely connected to their networks, we were not able to identify risk factors. Based on our results, the physics laboratory course is equally successful in building strongly connected groups regardless of student demographics in the sections or the formed small groups. SocioPatterns supplemented with surveys thus provides an opportunity to look into the dynamics of students’ social networks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Networks Applied in Science Education Research)
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Article
Moving Spaces: Mapping the Drama Room as Heterotopia
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 67; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030067 - 10 Mar 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2939
Abstract
This article is aimed at exploring the political characteristics of the drama space, which reflects, juxtaposes, and opposes particular sites in a participant’s everyday life, such as the school. By putting spatial theories to work, this article investigates the drama space belonging to [...] Read more.
This article is aimed at exploring the political characteristics of the drama space, which reflects, juxtaposes, and opposes particular sites in a participant’s everyday life, such as the school. By putting spatial theories to work, this article investigates the drama space belonging to an all-girls community group in Sweden, participation in which is voluntary and where the artistic work produced relies on a democratic process, with the girls’ input being vital. I conceptualise the drama room as a heterotopia that functions as an exclusive and excluding space as a well as a space of resistance. Based on interviews with the girls, this ethnographic study challenges the conventional notion that applied drama is only an interrelational matter between the drama participants. By examining the drama room’s role as the ‘other place’ in the girls’ everyday lives while being connected to ‘everyday’ places, this article demonstrates the drama room as an important space for the girls to have agency, there and elsewhere. When placing space and place in the foreground, a ‘dramaspaceknowledge’ emerges, the influence of which stretches beyond the drama room. This article argues that the girls’ dramaspaceknowledge is utilised when creating a performance and while challenging structures and norms elsewhere, such as in their schools and communities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Relation between Supplementary Education and Public Schooling)
Article
The Social Responsibility among Higher Education Students
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030066 - 09 Mar 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2286
Abstract
The aim of this research is to emphasize the importance of education for the philanthropic responsibilities of students. The basic term of the explanatory research is corporate social responsibility, adapted for higher education institutions—the philanthropic responsibilities of students, their implication on charity organization [...] Read more.
The aim of this research is to emphasize the importance of education for the philanthropic responsibilities of students. The basic term of the explanatory research is corporate social responsibility, adapted for higher education institutions—the philanthropic responsibilities of students, their implication on charity organization memberships or volunteering activities, and their motivation to help others. Special attention was given to the following questions: Are students involved in charity organization activities or voluntary work? Are there any differences between state and private universities regarding the philanthropic activities of students? How frequently, where, and why are they involved in volunteering? What is the latent structure of students‘ motivations? The quantitative international survey dates were collected by the Centre for Higher Education Research and Development from Debrecen University, Hungary, and the present examination focuses on the sample from Romania. Using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) statistical software, first, through a longitudinal perspective, Romanian students’ implications from state and private institutions were compared. Second, the paper analyzes the characteristics of volunteering and student’s motivations. The conclusions present significant differences between state and private institutions. Students traditional motivations, i.e., to help others, were very common and connected with relational and self-development intentions. This mixed motivational factor was different from the global motivational factor (to learn new languages and to discover new cultures). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Research and Trends in Higher Education)
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Article
Linking Sustainable Development Goals with Thermal Comfort and Lighting Conditions in Educational Environments
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030065 - 09 Mar 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1828
Abstract
The present paper deals with a wide range of issues related to the environmental quality in learning spaces, such as thermal and visual comfort, as well as energy efficiency. All of these issues fall under the umbrella of the UN Agenda 2030 and [...] Read more.
The present paper deals with a wide range of issues related to the environmental quality in learning spaces, such as thermal and visual comfort, as well as energy efficiency. All of these issues fall under the umbrella of the UN Agenda 2030 and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Upon reviewing publications of past studies, interviews were conducted and questionnaires were distributed in public high schools in the province of Alicante, located in the Southeast of Spain. Sixteen high schools were selected for the interviews. Fifteen in the city of Elche, which is the total amount of the high schools in the city. One additional high school that was considered important for this research was included in the study due to the characteristics of the building design, excessively exposed to weather conditions. Significant differences were observed between schools built before 2000 and those built after that date. The latter, surprisingly, not more thermally and visually comfortable or energy efficient. The knowledge gained from our investigation will be of great benefit for architects, designers, engineers, school planners and principals in order to establish stronger connections between infrastructures and SDGs. A chart linking recommendations with specific SDGs is also included in this study. Full article
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Article
Inspiring a Self-Reliant Learning Culture while Brewing the Next Silicon Valley in North Wales
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 64; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030064 - 08 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1549
Abstract
Practical strategies for improving individual engagement and performance within an engineering team project learning environment were applied and evaluated. While methodological refinements were required due to the structural challenges and novelty of the practice, positive outcomes such as a perceived increase in engagement [...] Read more.
Practical strategies for improving individual engagement and performance within an engineering team project learning environment were applied and evaluated. While methodological refinements were required due to the structural challenges and novelty of the practice, positive outcomes such as a perceived increase in engagement and technical proficiency were recorded. Critical aspects in the current approach are the well-known issue of assessing individual contributions within group performance, and setting a proper regulatory environment to prevent peer-assessment bias or dysfunctions. A novel intra-group mark moderation approach is presented and discussed. Full article
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Article
Fictional Video Cases on Parent-Teacher Conversations: Authenticity in the Eyes of Teachers and Teacher Education Students
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 63; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030063 - 07 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1755
Abstract
Video based instructional approaches have become very popular in teacher education. In this context, fictional video cases (FVCs) are a promising format because they can make discrete situations (e.g., parent–teacher conversations) accessible for learners. We critically discuss the concept of authenticity of FVCs [...] Read more.
Video based instructional approaches have become very popular in teacher education. In this context, fictional video cases (FVCs) are a promising format because they can make discrete situations (e.g., parent–teacher conversations) accessible for learners. We critically discuss the concept of authenticity of FVCs with respect to their use for didactic purposes with student and in-service teachers. In an empirical study, we examine the authenticity of a specific pair of contrasting FVCs on teacher-parent communication (showing constructive vs. confrontative communication by the teacher). The FVCs were viewed by teachers and teacher-education students who rated the material regarding its authenticity. The results were that the authenticity of the two video versions was evaluated as “medium”, as was the authenticity of the characters. Moreover, the teachers evaluated the video cases as more authentic compared to the teacher education students. Given that existing studies show that the FVCs in focus here were successfully used in instructional contexts, we conclude that it is possible to create meaningful and effective didactic environments featuring FVCs with a medium level of authenticity. Full article
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Article
Two Heads Are Better Than One—Entrepreneurial Continuous Learning through Massive Open Online Courses
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030062 - 07 Mar 2020
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1882
Abstract
Globalisation and digital technology have changed the means and mechanisms of knowledge acquisition. The rapidly expanding open-access online resources and various digital learning platforms present new opportunities in the area of continuous entrepreneurial learning, including that of corporate employees. This paper draws on [...] Read more.
Globalisation and digital technology have changed the means and mechanisms of knowledge acquisition. The rapidly expanding open-access online resources and various digital learning platforms present new opportunities in the area of continuous entrepreneurial learning, including that of corporate employees. This paper draws on knowledge spillover theory in order to explore the potential of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) as enablers of knowledge exchange, consolidation and new knowledge creation through connecting geographically and institutionally distant actors. The research design is based on a qualitative interpretative approach exploiting a triangulation of methods by using sets of quantitative data collected from MOOC participants, five focus group interviews and text content of online course discussion groups. This study contributes to our understanding of how digital technologies enable entrepreneurial learning on a massive scale. It identifies three factors which can trigger intense horizontal knowledge spillovers on a massive scale: (i) participants’ common interests and aspirations, (ii) induced mobilisation, and (iii) participants’ optional anonymity. Additionally, the findings of this study provide useful information for potential MOOC creators regarding the design and delivery of MOOCs targeting a high density of participant interactions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Entrepreneurship Education)
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Article
Less but Better? Teaching Maths in Further Education and Collateral Growth
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030061 - 06 Mar 2020
Viewed by 1767
Abstract
The paper presents and explores the experience of maths students studying in a context shaped by a core concept maths curriculum. The three vignettes that illuminate experience are drawn from a larger research project that worked with five teachers and 630 learners aged [...] Read more.
The paper presents and explores the experience of maths students studying in a context shaped by a core concept maths curriculum. The three vignettes that illuminate experience are drawn from a larger research project that worked with five teachers and 630 learners aged 16–18 in Further Education classrooms in England. Analysis involved distinguishing different understandings of being good at maths, different views of a good maths curriculum and identifying enablers and barriers to being a ‘successful’ maths student. Dewey’s ideas about focused experience and collateral learning were used to deepen this analysis. The paper reports a surprising finding. In some cases, students recognize the positive impact learning maths had on developing their wider human capabilities. Maths teachers in England, working in the context of ‘new public management’, may find reasons to take heart from the accounts of teaching and learning presented. For the international reader who is grappling with the challenge of reengaging maths students, the accounts of what matters to students could spur a reconsideration of priorities and practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Post-Compulsory Education)
Review
Quality of Feedback in Higher Education: A Review of Literature
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 60; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030060 - 05 Mar 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3166
Abstract
In raising the standards for professional educators, higher educators must be prepared to provide the highest quality feedback on student performance and work products toward improved outcomes. This review of the literature examined the major findings of 70 quantitative, mixed methods, or qualitative [...] Read more.
In raising the standards for professional educators, higher educators must be prepared to provide the highest quality feedback on student performance and work products toward improved outcomes. This review of the literature examined the major findings of 70 quantitative, mixed methods, or qualitative studies found in higher education journals across a range of disciplines. Multiple recommendations and results for feedback emerged which fall into the categories described by Susan Brookhart. This review found research for each of Brookhart’s categories, with results indicating differences between the perceptions of adherence to sound feedback practices versus the reality of implementation, the potential for innovative tool use, and a disagreement about the effectiveness of peers for providing effective feedback. Indicators for quality within the research confirmed the importance of commonly accepted standards such as positivity, specificity, timeliness, and encouraging active student participation. Additionally, trends and themes indicated a need for the consistent implementation of the feedback exchange process and flexibility to account for student input/preferences. Greater consistency toward the application of these quality indicators should be undertaken when determining the quality of higher education feedback for preservice teachers prior to undertaking summative licensure assessments. Full article
Review
Assessing Expressive Oral Reading Fluency
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030059 - 04 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2216
Abstract
Educators struggle to assess various aspects of reading in valid and reliable ways. Whether it is comprehension, phonological awareness, vocabulary, or phonics, determining appropriate assessments is challenging across grade levels and student abilities. Also challenging is measuring aspects of fluency: rate, accuracy, and [...] Read more.
Educators struggle to assess various aspects of reading in valid and reliable ways. Whether it is comprehension, phonological awareness, vocabulary, or phonics, determining appropriate assessments is challenging across grade levels and student abilities. Also challenging is measuring aspects of fluency: rate, accuracy, and prosody. This article presents a history of fluency in American education with particular focus on assessing expressive oral reading. In addition, the two major approaches to prosody assessment will be explained, and the three most prominent tools for rating expressive oral reading will be analyzed and discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reading Fluency)
Article
Towards a Training Framework for Improved Assistive Mobile App Acceptance and Use Rates by Blind and Visually Impaired People
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030058 - 04 Mar 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1765
Abstract
The development of mobile apps, which are either suitably adapted or especially designed for use by sensory-deprived people, have contributed significantly to the continuously increasing adoption of digital assistive technologies by people with disabilities. Throughout the design of two assistive navigation mobile apps [...] Read more.
The development of mobile apps, which are either suitably adapted or especially designed for use by sensory-deprived people, have contributed significantly to the continuously increasing adoption of digital assistive technologies by people with disabilities. Throughout the design of two assistive navigation mobile apps for blind and visually impaired people (BVI), a set of everyday practices and psychological features of the BVIs with respect to the use of mobile technology was identified. Specifically, interviews with BVIs were held at the first stage of the design process. The analysis of the responses revealed that appropriate training of a BVI on how to use these apps plays significant role on the anticipated app adoption and use rate. This study presents the everyday practices and psychological features of the BVIs, as they were inferred from the analysis of the interviews. It is argued that these psychological features and practices must be considered in the development of training practices concerning the use of the proposed technology. Towards this direction, a framework for the adequate training of BVIs on the use of assistive mobile apps is presented. Consideration of this framework during the development of assistive mobile apps for BVIs could contribute towards higher adoption rates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Academic Approach to Education)
Article
Read Like Me: An Intervention for Struggling Readers
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 57; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030057 - 04 Mar 2020
Viewed by 2600
Abstract
The current study reports on a reading intervention method titled Read Like Me. The intervention utilizes a stacked approach of research-based methods, including reading aloud, assisted reading, and repeated reading. The student involved was a second-grade boy reading below grade level who was [...] Read more.
The current study reports on a reading intervention method titled Read Like Me. The intervention utilizes a stacked approach of research-based methods, including reading aloud, assisted reading, and repeated reading. The student involved was a second-grade boy reading below grade level who was identified as dyslexic and diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactive disorder. Using a single-case experimental design, the intervention was monitored in four phases, including a baseline, intervention coupled with regular schooling, intervention only, and a return to baseline. The results indicated that the intervention combined with regular schooling improved his reading expression and rate and also his decoding skills, word knowledge, and reading comprehension. In conclusion, the authors offer Read Like Me as one more intervention that may be a viable option for teachers in their effort to support developing readers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reading Fluency)
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Article
Effects of Fluency Oriented Instruction on Motivation for Reading of Struggling Readers
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 56; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030056 - 03 Mar 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2601
Abstract
This paper looks at the effects of an intervention, based on fluency oriented reading instruction (FORI), on the motivation for reading among struggling readers in First Class in Irish primary schools. The intervention took place in learning support settings in three primary schools [...] Read more.
This paper looks at the effects of an intervention, based on fluency oriented reading instruction (FORI), on the motivation for reading among struggling readers in First Class in Irish primary schools. The intervention took place in learning support settings in three primary schools located in urban educationally disadvantaged communities in North Dublin. The study was conducted through a pragmatic lens with research questions framed to shed light on the motivation for reading of students in First Class from disadvantaged backgrounds. A mixed methods design with a concurrent triangulation strategy was employed, facilitating the exploration of multiple research questions using questionnaires and semi-structured interviews with teachers and parents and conversational interviews and surveys with students. The perspective of reading motivation guiding the study recognised the overlapping influences of teachers, parents and the student himself or herself. Findings, as reported by these research informants, indicate that the FORI intervention had a positive impact on the motivation for reading of struggling readers in First Class. In particular, the intervention was found to decrease students’ perceived difficulty with reading and increase their reading self-efficacy and orientation towards reading. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reading Fluency)
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Article
Exploring Students’ Metacognitive Knowledge: The Case of Integral Calculus
Educ. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 55; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10030055 - 03 Mar 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1755
Abstract
Previous studies of integral calculus have mainly explored students’ conceptual and procedural knowledge; only a few have focused on students’ metacognition in relation to integral calculus. The study reported here explored students’ metacognitive knowledge of integral calculus by interviewing nine first-year university and [...] Read more.
Previous studies of integral calculus have mainly explored students’ conceptual and procedural knowledge; only a few have focused on students’ metacognition in relation to integral calculus. The study reported here explored students’ metacognitive knowledge of integral calculus by interviewing nine first-year university and eight Year 13 students. The design of the interview questions was based on the structure of metacognitive knowledge in Revised Bloom’s Taxonomy. The findings suggest there are differences between students’ metacognitive knowledge at Year 13 and the first year of university. In particular, the importance of knowing the rationale behind the theorems and formulas was not obvious for Year 13 students. Moreover, students’ metacognitive knowledge could be developed further at both levels, particularly in terms of developing strategies to identify how integral calculus questions could be solved and to check the outcome of problem-solving. Full article
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