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Outcomes-Focused Learning Environments

Determinants and Effects


Jill M. Aldridge and Barry J. Fraser

In order to make education more inclusive, outcomes-focused education is currently being adopted by schools and post-school education and training systems in numerous countries around the world. Outcomes-focused education involves a major shift from what teachers do to an 'outcomes focus’ on what students achieve and an emphasis on catering for students’ individual differences in backgrounds, interests and learning styles.
This book focuses on the successes and challenges of an innovative new post-compulsory secondary school in creating an outcomes-focused curriculum. Major research aims included evaluating the effectiveness of this school’s educational programs in promoting outcomes-focused learning environments, and investigating some of the determinants and effects of outcomes-focused learning environments.
Practically, this book suggests implications for educational systems about how effective outcomes-focused learning environments can be created to maximise educational outcomes for each individual student. Methodologically, the book illustrates the productive combination of quantitative and qualitative data-collection methods in learning environments research. Researchers and practitioners around the world are likely to make use of the widely-applicable Technology-Rich Outcomes-Focused Learning Environment Inventory (TROFLEI), whose development and validation are reported in detail in this book.


Kenneth Tobin

related issues they would like to pursue during research. We refer to this methodology as authentic inquiry, central to fourth generation evaluation ( Guba & Lincoln, 1989 ), which we appropriated in a multilogical approach to research ( Tobin & Ritchie, 2012 ). Several criteria have salience to the

Xiangyun Du, Erik de Graaff and Anette Kolmos

Javier Garcia and Jorge E. Perez

In the context of the Computer Science career, we have designed a course on Real Time Systems using a Project Based Learning approach. This course is based on six educational methodologies. Our students have a limited amount of time to develop the project, and consequently, a main objective in the design of the course has been to fully take advantage of every programmed session. Educational methodologies have been chosen according to the work that students needed to do at each stage of the project. Besides planning activities, we established several mechanisms to compile information about the course’s development. The course’s design has been effective and reaches the goal of supporting PBL development. However, the analysis of the results has allowed us to detect that students do not spend enough time to study and showed the necessity of opening more sessions dedicated to methodologies such as oral presentations and lab sessions.

Eventful Learning

Learner Emotions


Edited by Stephen M. Ritchie and Kenneth Tobin

A rich array of social and cultural theories constitutes a solid foundation that affords unique insights into teaching and learning science and learning to teach science. The approach moves beyond studies in which emotion, cognition, and context are often regarded as independent. Collaborative studies advance theory and resolve practical problems, such as enhancing learning by managing excess emotions and successfully regulating negative emotions. Multilevel studies address a range of timely issues, including emotional energy, discrete emotions, emotion regulation, and a host of issues that arose, such as managing negative emotions like frustration and anxiety, dealing with disruptive students, and regulating negative emotions such as frustration, embarrassment, disgust, shame, and anger. A significant outcome is that teachers can play an important role in supporting students to successfully regulate negative emotions and support learning.

The book contains a wealth of cutting edge methodologies and methods that will be useful to researchers and the issues addressed are central to teaching and learning in a global context. A unifying methodology is the use of classroom events as the unit for analysis in research that connects to the interests of teacher educators, teachers, and researchers who can adapt what we have done and learned, and apply it in their local contexts. Event-oriented inquiry highlights the transformative potential of research and provides catchy narratives and contextually rich events that have salience to the everyday practices of teachers, teacher educators, and researchers. Methods used in the research include emotion diaries in which students keep a log of their emotions, clickers to measure in-the-moment emotional climate, and uses of cogenerative dialogue, which caters to diverse voices of students and teachers.

Sandra Fernandes, Maria Assunção Flores and Rui M. Lima

The Bologna Process has introduced a number of changes in Higher Education institutions, namely in curricula restructuring and in new methodologies of teaching and assessing, amongst others. Also of importance is the need to improve student achievement which has to focus not only upon the development of technical competencies, but also upon the development of transversal competencies. This paper aims to give an overview of an ongoing and broader piece of research on impact assessment of Project-Led Education (PLE) on students’ learning, and its contribution to the improvement of teaching and learning in Higher Education. It is based on a longitudinal approach with first year Industrial Management and Engineering students, who participated in PLE experiences. For this, the CIPP (Context, Input, Process, Product) Evaluation Model was used as a framework for evaluating the impact of the programme (Stufflebeam, 2003). Data were collected through qualitative and quantitative research methods, according to the four dimensions of evaluation in CIPP. Findings suggest that the CIPP Model provided a broad understanding of the evaluation process, thus linking the evaluation and decision-making processes. Data collected from students, in regard to PLE processes and outcomes, showed a stronger articulation between theory and practice, which improved learning and increased student motivation. The project was considered a good way to develop not only technical skills, but also important transversal competencies such as project management, problem solving, communication skills and teamwork. Greater involvement of students in the assessment process and the need to clarify and share a common understanding of the tutor’s role, mostly amongst tutors themselves, were some of the key issues for further improvement that emerged from the data collected.

Mathematics Classrooms in Twelve Countries

The Insider's Perspective


Edited by David Clarke, Christine Keitel and Yoshinori Shimizu

This book reports the accounts of researchers investigating the eighth grade mathematics classrooms of teachers in Australia, China, the Czech Republic, Germany, Israel, Japan, Korea, The Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden and the USA. This combination of countries gives good representation to different European and Asian educational traditions, affluent and less affluent school systems, and mono-cultural and multi-cultural societies. Researchers within each local group focused their analyses on those aspects of practice and meaning most closely aligned with the concerns of the local school system and the theoretical orientation of the researchers. Within any particular educational system, the possibilities for experimentation and innovation are limited by more than just methodological and ethical considerations: they are limited by our capacity to conceive possible alternatives. They are also limited by our assumptions regarding acceptable practice. These assumptions are the result of a long local history of educational practice, in which every development was a response to emergent local need and reflective of changing local values. Well-entrenched practices sublimate this history of development. The Learner’s Perspective Study is guided by a belief that we need to learn from each other. The resulting chapters offer deeply situated insights into the practices of mathematics classrooms in twelve countries: an insider’s perspective.

Marcos Azevedo da Silveira, José Alberto Reis Parise, Reinaldo Calixto de Campos, Luiz Carlos Scavard do Carmo and Nival Nunes de Almeida

The raising and development of problem-based learning and project-based learning in Brazil is presented through historical, methodological and political points of view. Motivations and difficulties to their implementation are reviewed and the current situation is discussed.

Sabina Jeschke, Lars Knipping, Nicole Natho, Ursula Vollmer and Marc Wilke

The Robinson curriculum contains a novel approach to improve the engineering education, to enhance technological literacy of students from non-engineering fields and to increase in the number of students, especially young women, in the fields of engineering and natural sciences. Since robotics holds a special fascination among all the technological fields – due to its cross-disciplinary approach as well as its popularity through movies and literature, this field allows hands-on teaching of scientific and engineering methodologies at an early stage of the academic education, not limited to engineering students but encompassing students from all academic – and even pre-academic – areas.

Yoshio Tozawa

PBL (Project Based Learning) is beginning to be recognized as important and effective educational method for students to learn practical knowledge and skills in Japan. The Shortage of highly skilled IT people in Japan has pushed educators to adapt new efforts in education. In 2006, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government established the new public graduate university, Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology. PBL has been introduced as an essential curriculum in the Master Program of Information Systems Architecture of the university. One of the PBL projects is on IT strategy, which is the uppermost stream of information systems. The PBL focuses on the activities of an IT strategy consultant. The consultant is one of the IT professions out of 11 in the Japanese skill standards for IT professionals. Since PBL is an educational vehicle, there are educational objectives besides the project objective. The methodology is a bridge between the project objective and educational objectives. We discuss the IT strategy, methodology, educational objectives, and a critical success factor of a consultant.