Developing an understanding of coherent approaches between primary and secondary teachers: a case study within the design and technology curriculum in Scotland

Liza Hart-Anderson, Richard Holme (Lead / Corresponding author)

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Abstract

This study is based around Education Scotland’s ambition to create a coherent learning framework for pupils aged 3–18, with particular focus on the technologies curricular area, and more specifically the subject of design and technology (D&T). The study investigates the views, definitions, and approaches adopted by primary and secondary educators applied to the D&T curricular area. Furthermore, the research explores curricular understanding and pedagogical approaches in addition to individual teacher’s understanding of technology education. A mixed method research approach was utilised and applied within one local authority region in Scotland. Data was collected from primary teachers and secondary design and technology teachers using online questionnaires and interviews. Findings reveal that there is a varied approach to teaching design and technology across primary and secondary schools with educators recognising different definitions and pedagogical approaches in the subject. This indicates that pupils transitioning from primary to secondary learning will have to cope with these differing teaching approaches when studying design and technology. However, participants agree on the importance of the design element and application of the subject to real world scenarios. It is recommended that school communities find opportunities to collaborate further with the aim of creating a more continuous, coherent learning journey for young people in the design and technology curriculum area. These findings provide a basis for future professional discussion and critical reflection for practitioners in both primary and secondary sectors, and for leaders and administrators across Scotland, the UK and around the world.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages27
JournalInternational Journal of Technology and Design Education
Early online date11 Dec 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 11 Dec 2022

Keywords

  • Design Technology
  • Primary education
  • Secondary education
  • Curriculum coherence
  • Teacher CPD

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