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Title: Adapting ibse material across Europe : experiences from the Pri-Sci-Net FP7 Project
Authors: Gatt, Suzanne
Byrne, Jenny
Rietdijk, Willeke
Tunnicliffe, Sue Dale
Kalaitsidaki, Marianna
Stavrou, Dimitris
Tsagliotis, Nektarios
Gaudiello, Ilaria
Zibetti, Elisabetta
Scheersoi, Annette
Papadouris, Nikos
Kramer, Philipp
Constantinou, C. P.
Papadouris, Nikos
Hadjigeorgiou, A.
Keywords: Inquiry-based learning
Education, Primary -- Social aspects
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: European Science Education Research Association
Citation: Gatt, S., Byrne, J., Rietdijk, W., Tunnicliffe, S. D., Kalaitsidaki, M., Stavrou, D., ... & Krämer, P. (2014). Adapting ibse material across Europe: experiences from the Pri-Sci-Net FP7 Project. In C. P. Constantinou, N. Papadouris & A. Hadjigeorgiou (Eds.), E-Book Proceedings of the ESERA 2013 Conference: Science Education Research For Evidence-based Teaching and Coherence in Learning (pp. 22-33). Nicosia: European Science Education Research Association.
Abstract: This paper combines 4 presentations making up a symposium. Inquiry-based learning in science has been advocated by the European Commission at both primary and secondary level of education (Rocard et al, 2007) However, changes in science pedagogy across Europe has proved to be a challenge. In addition cultural and linguistic contexts of learning and education systems across Europe vary and make the transfer of educational resources and pedagogical approaches difficult. The Pri-Sci-Net project is an FP7 Coordination and Supporting Action funded by the European Commission which works to promote the Inquiry-Based approach in Science Education (IBSE) with young primary level children across Europe. One approach through which the project is trying to promote inquiry science is through producing educational material (in the form of 45 IBSE activities) which are to be translated in different European languages. Recognising European diversity, some of these activities were then tested for cultural and language adaptation in the partner countries. This paper provides the research results of an evaluation exercise carried out by some of the partners. The results provide insights into the barriers which students and teachers face in implementing the new inquiry-based approach. The evaluation exercise showed that while there were few cultural and linguistice differences, the main difficulties encountered related more to general education issues such as: teachers’ inexperience and lack of confidence in implementing the inquiry-based learning approach; the children’s expectations of how learning in science should be; the structured aspect of some curricula which allowed little space for inquiry activities; and teachers’ and students’ uneasiness in getting used to a new mode of learning. All these aspects highlight the need for time to allow systems, teachers and students to adapt to the inquiry-based learning approach. Curricular and pedagogical changes thus need to be introduced slowly such that adjustment takes place gradually. In addition, during this process, schools and teachers need to have continuous professional support.
ISSN: 9789963700776
Appears in Collections:Scholarly Works - FacEduECPE

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