Research in Technology Education is a relatively new filed on inquiry – partly due to the fact that the curricular subject area itself is comparatively new. Whilst this means that there is lots of exciting work still to be done, it is prudent also to note that there have been a large number of very high quality and well-considered contributions to date. Every so often, researchers will summarise these contributions, the shape of the landscape and map out the directions and interests that are evidenced in what people write about.
Such exercises in grasping a snap shot of the bigger picture can be revealing but, as noted by Prof John Williams during a key note in Hong Kong early this year, notoriously challenging if you wish to predict where things will go next! Back in 1994, Karen F Zuga published a review of 220 papers that identified a range of themes including subject status, curricular development and change, teacher education, instructional design, problem solving, integration of technology with other subjects and attitudes towards the subject. Arguably, just over two decades later, many of these areas still seem relevant in the face of today’s changing curricula. A recently published book entitled: ‘The Future of Technology Education’ (Williams et al, 2015), offers a contemporary comprehensive insight into the work in the field and makes several attempts at pointing out remaining areas of challenge.
The book draws upon a range of international perspectives and concludes that there is work still to be done in areas that, in some ways, could be seen as reflective of some of the areas of interest identified back in 1994. Williams et al, argue that these include: the link between research and practice, the potential challenges of the STEM agenda for Technology, the use of modern media and communication technologies, the epistemic basis and identity of the subject and the increased role of the teacher in carrying out subject specific research. I would very much recommend this text to anyone with an interest in the field of Technology Education.
Accessing research in Technology Education…
In the spirit of accessing research that relates to Technology Education, I have compiled a list of journals that publish articles relevant to the field. Many of these are open access and those that are not by default, will offer a number of their articles on an open access basis anyway. As such, they are worth checking out.
- Studies in Design Education Craft & Technology
- National Association for Design Education
- Journal of Design & Technology Education
- Design & Technology Teaching
- Design and Technology Education: an International Journal
- Design and Technology Association Conference Archives
- International Journal of Technology and Design Education
- Journal of Technology Education
- Design Studies
- Australasian Journal of Technology Education
- International Journal of Art and Design Education
- British Educational Research Journal
- Journal of Curriculum Studies
- Journal of Technology Studies
- Research in Science & Technology Education
- Canadian Journal of Science, Mathematics and Technology Education
- The Technology Teacher
- Journal of STEM Education
- International Journal of STEM Education
- Journal of Technology of Teacher Education
- Journal of sTEm Teacher Education
- Journal of Vocational Education & Training
Williams, J., P., Jones, A. and Buntting, C. (2015). The Future of Technology Education. Singapore: Springer. [online]. Available from: http://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-981-287-170-1.
Williams, J. P. (January, 2015). Research in Technology Education: Recent Developments and Future Trends. Keynote Speech. 11th International Conference on Technology Education for the Asia-Pacific Region. Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong.
Zuga, K., F. (1994). Implementing Technology Education: A Review and Synthesis of the Research Literature. Washington DC: ERIC Clearinghouse on Adult, Career, and Vocational Education, Columbus, Ohio. Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED).