Informed Decision

ExcITEd Core Project

Informed Decision

intro Informed Decitions

Informed Decisions aims to increase the knowledge of IT and the IT profession for pre-university students. The project focuses on:

  1. Design of engaging and motivating activities for pupils
  2. Teacher training

Vojislav Vujošević is the PhD student associated to the project. His background is in psychology and computer science. His research interests include technology for education and teaching practices in computer science. He is currently working on pre-university computing education, with focus on teachers of Computing in Norway. He is exploring how reflection and cooperation, in the classroom and between educators as a community of practice, can aid and improve the work of computing teachers.

Activities 

The project has organized different activities for pre-university students, in forms of classrooms interventions, university visits/placements, and summer schools. These activities led to the development of useful expertise and knowledge about teaching IT to pre-university students, increasing their awareness of IT, and making IT more interesting as a career option.

Thanks to cooperation with external actors we also contributed to the development of new learning resources. For example, cooperation with the Bebras project has contributed to the translation into Norwegian of Bebras´ learning resources for understanding computational thinking. Excited has funded summer job students to improve LKK’s web pages and collection of learning material, a shared resource for all LKK’s coding clubs across Norway (currently 186 clubs), widely used as well by teachers in primary and secondary schools.

Regarding teacher training, Excited recognizes the importance of promoting training for pre- and in-service teachers. For teachers in secondary schools, "Informed decitions" contributes to the continuing education courses on the topic “Programming for teachers”, with seminars and follow-up research to enable these courses to flexibly support a variety of competence needs. Excited also hosted LKK’s Teacher Conference in Trondheim in 2019, gathering around 100 programming teachers for inspiration and exchange of experiences. A similar event is under re-planning (previously planned event canceled due to Covid-19). Excited also contributes to pre-service teacher training cooperating with the study program Natural Science with Teacher Education (for students targeting careers as teachers in upper secondary school). This cooperation aims to contribute to improving the social and academic learning environment and increase the throughput of candidates with informatics specialization from this degree program.

We have seen an active participation of university students. Some have helped with the activities in schools, others have completed master theses in the context of this project, developing prototypes that have been tried out in schools. Students take pride in sharing their knowledge and passion with pupils, and they are important role models. We observed again and again that they are always the first choice when pupils are stuck with a challenge or have to ask questions.

Excited and "Informed decitions"  is also working to establish a cooperation network, both nationally and internationally.

Further Activities

Planned activities include:

- Continuous engagement with relevant communities. The new national learning plan opens new possibilities, but it is demanding for individual teachers and schools to develop new competencies and skills. Our priorities have necessarily to take into account new needs to keep our work relevant.

- Gender gap. Our initial studies pointed out a considerable gap in IT education, starting in lower secondary schools. We have a number of ongoing activities that aim to understand this challenge and propose solutions. In this area, additional funding has been secured by Nord/Steinkjer through the NordPlus project "Girls just wanna have fun-damental IT-skills”.

- Consolidation of results. We are working to package the learning resources developed so far, to make them easily adoptable for teachers.

- Teacher training. We will continue the effort towards promoting and improving teacher training. In addition to the existing initiatives, we will investigate other possibilities, for example ways to support workplace learning through reflection and community cooperation. Increasing focus on IT in lower education creates a huge need for didactic competence and learning resources, and we will continue our efforts both to improve teacher education and make learning resources with broad appeal.

Outcome 

By the end of our project, IT shall be a more popular study choice among Norway’s young – and for girls in particular – than it is today, and high school students shall consider IT career on a more informed basis than today.

Project Team

Project Team

person-portlet

Monica Divitini
Professor
divitini@ntnu.no
+47-73594462
+47-91897790
Majid Rouhani
Associate Professor
majid.rouhani@ntnu.no
+47-73559355
Vojislav Vujosevic
PhD Candidate
vojislav.vujosevic@ntnu.no

Partners

Partners

person-portlet