Pilot research study – invitation for teachers to participate

New horizons in maker education:

A phenomenological study of teachers’ lived experiences in secondary schools.

Invitation

Teachers, you are invited to take part in this research study to illuminate maker education in secondary schools in England.  Before you decide whether or not you wish to take part, it is important that you understand why the research is being done and what it will involve.  Next steps and contact information are added to the bottom of this post.

What is the purpose of the research?

Since the maker movement has grown internationally we have witnessed it’s integration into school settings with a rise in the adoption of ‘maker education’ and associated learning spaces connected to ‘learning by making’. The aim of this study is to use narratives of teacher experiences and produce in-depth descriptions of digital making in secondary school settings.

Maker education has become a research topic of interest but the diffusion of studies has been at the expense of developing coherent theory and practice. As such there is an increasing need to grow the body of empirical evidence and conceptualise teacher experiences of maker education over a number of years as an object of study for educational research. Can you contribute with your own experiences in the classroom?

What does taking part involve?

Teachers will be interviewed three times over a 3-4 week period, with each interview session lasting 90 minutes or less (70 minutes is an average time). We want to find out more about how your experiences as a teacher have shaped the adoption of maker education in school, so each session will take a different focus:

  1. Pathways that lead to maker education in school today
  2. Descriptions of maker education in your school
  3. Reflecting on the meaning of maker education in school

The interviews themselves will be semi-structured, so they’ll start with specific questions for you to answer and start to share your experiences about maker education and continue in a conversational style between the researcher and teacher. Interviews will either be conducted in person at your own school or online using a remote tool such as Microsoft Teams.

Who can take part?

We’re inviting teachers with at least two years of experience with digital making in school to join the study and contribute by sharing their own experiences. Teachers will need to be based in a secondary school in England where maker approaches have been adopted.

What are the possible benefits of taking part?

Your experiences will contribute to a new body of knowledge about maker education in schools, with the capacity to help other teachers and inform further educational research. The voices of teaching experience will add to the development of unique perspectives for this study and teacher participants can contribute to educational research as co-researchers.

Has this study received ethical approval?

This study has received ethical approval from the Research Ethics Committee at the University of Leeds on 22/10/2020.

Who should I contact for further information about the study and consent relating to the research?

Researcher is Claire Garside, email: edcga@leeds.ac.uk

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