Case Studies

Project

Schooling in Europe - by Sue Gaardboe

Why the trip?

I was invited to join a group of senior academics from UniSA on a fact-finding trip to Helsinki, Copenhagen and Barcelona. The University is looking to redevelop its Teacher Education facilities, and was interested in us looking at cutting-edge design of buildings, courses, teaching and schools in Europe.  I was invited to accompany them as an educationalist with an interest in the application of digital technologies and problem-based learning.  Of course a trip like this only manages to brush the surface of a hugely complex field.  Teaching methods and student success are linked to so many things - community expectations about the way children behave and are treated; the standing of teachers and the role of schools in the community;  funding models and national or societal expectations of priorities for funding, to name only a few. But even within these limits our examinations can help us to see our own place in the world, and help us see directions that could be of value.
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Project

What is truly innovative learning?  - by Professor Stephen Dobson

What makes a school or even an institution in the tertiary sector cutting edge in this respect? Is every new twist and turn in practice innovative?

Rousseau is counted as one of history’s great educational innovators. He often took the taken for granted and looked at it differently. In Emile the reader meets a form of child’s education which begins without the teacher, a natural form of education learning from experience not the teacher. If a child throws a stone through the bedroom window and as a consequence has to sleep in a cold, freezing room, they learn. In one of Rousseau’s other books he says that he felt before he thought, and from this he learnt that the rational was not the only or primary gateway to knowledge and learning.
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Project

Visiting PK Yonge - by Dr Garth Stahl

In April 2016 I was invited to visit a well-established demonstration school, PK Yonge, located in Gainesville Florida. As University of South Australia looks to redevelop its Teacher Education facilities, we are looking to international models of demonstration schools. 

I was investigating best practices in what is widely considered to be a site of innovative learning and collaboration.  Aside from seeing the school itself, my focus was on the integration of research and pre-service teacher training.  I was also interested in the relationship between flexible learning spaces and learning practices and the possible complexities surrounding this.  Of course, a visit like this only manages to brush the surface; however, the trip was insightful on many levels.
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Project

The purpose of space - by Larry Spry

 I have recently returned from the UK visiting 12 schools across the greater London area. These schools were a cross section of Academies, public, private and free schools that were developing teaching and learning programs engaging students in STEM related approaches.

Whilst I was looking at “STEM teaching as a pedagogy “  the real impact of my observations and time spent in the sites was the creative and critical use of “space ‘in all the schools & the purpose & the design of spaces that  supported the notion  for a multi- purpose approach to teaching D&T in  workshop areas and teaching spaces.
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Areas of study and research

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