There are over ninety local Children’s Universities (CUs) throughout the United Kingdom (UK) and throughout the World including in Australia. CUs aim to meet learning needs of children through extracurricular provision. This paper describes a detailed exploration of the factors underpinning the needs of stakeholders, including children, teachers, teacher education students and Higher Education (HE) tutors, during the formation of a local CU. This qualitative study used unstructured interviews employing a constructivist grounded theory approach. The research identified a common need for science education across all stakeholders and that the unique approach adopted by this CU benefited all stakeholders by providing a context within which children, teachers, teacher education students and HE tutors could learn science in an informal way. There was simultaneous acquisition of scientific knowledge and skills by children, their teachers, teacher education students, at point of delivery by the tutor. Teachers considered tutor as a trusted expert supporting their professional development through modelling what they described as innovative pedagogy. Tutor credibility was enhanced in the eyes of teacher education students. The implications for science teacher education, professional development and the role of specialist science teachers in primary schools will be explored.
|Publication status||Published - 3 Jul 2015|
|Event||Australasian Science Education Research Association Conference 2015 - The University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia|
Duration: 1 Jul 2015 → 3 Jul 2015
Conference number: 46th
|Conference||Australasian Science Education Research Association Conference 2015|
|Abbreviated title||ASERA 2015|
|Period||1/07/15 → 3/07/15|
Overton, D. (2015). Addressing the learning needs of children, teaching students and teachers in an informal context. Abstract from Australasian Science Education Research Association Conference 2015, Perth, Australia.