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Secondary teacher and teacher educator perspectives on ‘demonstration’ as a signature pedagogy for Design and Technology: Implications for initial teacher education

McLain, M (2022) Secondary teacher and teacher educator perspectives on ‘demonstration’ as a signature pedagogy for Design and Technology: Implications for initial teacher education. Doctoral thesis, Liverpool John Moores University.

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This research consists of eight peer-reviewed journal articles and contributes to the under-theorised pedagogy of demonstration in design and technology (D&T). Demonstration is presented as a signature pedagogy, commonly used for teaching practical skills (or procedural knowledge). The aims of the studies represented in this research include exploring secondary teacher and teacher educator views, addressing the apparent lack of evidence and systematic research into D&T pedagogy and practice. The literature suggests that diverse theoretical perspectives are associated with teachers’ views on modelling and explaining in D&T, including constructivism, social learning, and cognitive load; with the expert teacher adopting a more directive and restrictive approach during demonstration. The overarching research questions were concerned with pre- and in-service teacher and teacher educator views on effective approaches to demonstration and the use of a signature pedagogies framework to evaluate and select appropriate teaching methods. A variety of research methods were used in the studies, including autoethnography and mixed-methods questionnaires, with the particular use of Q Methodology to explore the subjective views of participants regarding effective demonstration. The sampling was non-probability, and research participants represented in the portfolio of articles included 202 Key Stage 3 pupils from five secondary schools in North West England, seven teachers and 11 teacher educators from across England and Scotland, and 192 preservice teachers in Merseyside. The findings indicate that demonstration was considered a teacher-led and relatively restrictive form of modelling, with participants ranking more expansive strategies lower in importance, including those that promote the consolidation of learning and facilitation of autonomy. Later studies revealed two pedagogical archetypes for D&T and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) educators: the first, a more behaviourist teacher-as-expert approach and the second a more constructivist teacher-as-facilitator led approach. However, these two perspectives were not expressed as mutually exclusive, the differences being subtle and nuanced. This research suggests that teachers should consider demonstration as a surface structure (teaching method) on an expansive-restrictive pedagogical continuum, with an understanding of its benefits and limitations, as part of a broad pedagogical repertoire. Further research is needed on the impact of various approaches to demonstration in D&T, including frontloading, just-in-time, and after-failure approaches, and the impacts they have on students’ capability and learning.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Curriculum; Demonstration; Design and Technology; Expansive-Restrictive Continuum; National Curriculum; Pedagogy; Pragmatism; Q Methodology; Signature Pedagogies; Subjectivity; Teacher Modelling
Subjects: L Education > L Education (General)
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1603 Secondary Education. High schools
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1705 Education and training of teachers and administrators
Divisions: Education
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2022 10:49
Last Modified: 19 Dec 2022 10:49
DOI or ID number: 10.24377/LJMU.t.00018251
Supervisors: Bartlett, A-M and Thomas, M
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/18251
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