The development of design and technology from a problem-solving perspective: apropos eleven to fourteen year-old pupils within the English education system

Taylor, Peter (2001) The development of design and technology from a problem-solving perspective: apropos eleven to fourteen year-old pupils within the English education system. Masters thesis, Middlesex University.

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Abstract

The purpose of this study is to establish the efficacy of problem solving within design and technology as experienced by pupils, teachers and `experts' in England. Participants
in the study included a representative sample of pupils and teachers involved in teaching and learning of this subject within key stage 3 (pupils aged eleven to fourteen). Further
participants comprised two complimentary groups of `experts', including researchers, teacher trainers, advisers and inspectors.

In addition to a review of literature, focus group interviews took place with a range of design and technology/technology departments and a sample of their respective pupils.
Two further group interviews occurred with groups of design and technology education `experts'. Responses to questions were analysed using a constant comparative method of
handling qualitative data associated with the concept of grounded theory.

Findings of this study were as follows:
In spite of imperatives for problem solving to be paramount throughout the development of design and technology - culminating in various national curriculum versions during the
1990s - teachers found problem solving, within their experience, illl-defined and confusing. While there was a consensus that problem solving was important, teachers
felt dissatisfied about its effectiveness. Pupils confirmed the aspects of uncertainty raised by their teachers. Generally, teachers recognised a need, and, expressed a desire, for
more in-service training and support regarding problem solving.

In addition to `confirming' concerns about problem solving, expressed by their teachers,pupils wanted more and better problem solving within design and technology. They also
expressed a desire for better links to be made to other dimensions of design and technology.

Data emanating from groups of `experts' confirmed issues raised by teachers and pupils.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Research Areas: B. > Theses
Item ID: 13449
Depositing User: Adam Miller
Date Deposited: 14 Jan 2015 13:42
Last Modified: 05 Apr 2019 04:52
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/13449

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