Teaching for tomorrow –A project to apply authentic contexts in STEM teacher education

Building on the effective professional partnerships that the School of Education has established with schools this project seeks to extend those partnerships to include industry sites. For the first time in the School of Education, Science, Maths and Design and Technology pre-service teachers will complete an industry placement during their final year of study. This project provides an opportunity to prepare and support pre-service teachers to become STEM education leaders and to give them the skills and experience to develop sustainable school-industry partnerships.
Our vision for the project is a future where STEM teachers are well versed in the application of STEM skills in the workforce and are able to draw on authentic examples to inspire and engage their students. Working in partnership with the Department of State Development, the three phase project will be implemented over a two year period. Each phase of the project development provides a framework through which research is facilitated into the effectiveness, value and centrality of industry partnerships in STEM education programs in University and school sites.

Phase one of the project commenced late 2015 and drew on the expertise of recent graduates and experienced STEM teachers to produce a series of STEM videos that highlight the benefits of teaching STEM education. The videos are being utilised as informative teaching resources in STEM based secondary education courses within the School of Education. 

Phase two of the project began at the beginning of 2016, with twenty Design and Technology pre-service teachers undertaking their placements in diverse industry settings. The South Australian based industry partnerships include; Cobham Aviation Services, Australian Fashion labels, Barossa Fine Foods, Udder Delights and Entech Electronics. Throughout the placement pre-service teachers are provided with the opportunity to develop an awareness of the key competencies and capabilities required by the manufacturing and engineering workforce and to develop hands-on learning experiences to better inform their subject content knowledge. Pre-service teachers also have the opportunity to utilize problem-based strategies and industry collaborations as the impetus for planning future inquiry and problem based projects in STEM education. Science and Mathematics pre-service teachers undertake a similar experience starting in the second half of 2016.

The final phase of the project will extend the industry engagement developed in Phase 2 of the project to include the pre-service teachers and the secondary schools in which they are placed for their final school placement. Research for this phase of the project will also include a two - year longitudinal study into the long term outcomes of pre-service teacher’s involvement in the STEM Teacher-Industry Engagement Project on their teaching practice as early career teachers. 

For further details please contact Dr Denise McGregor.

Areas of study and research

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