How does introducing grades and national exams affect the way teachers view the contents subjects
- analysis of survey data
How is education in the science subjects, in compulsory school (years 4-6), affected when grades and national exams are introduced in year 6? In what ways do these reforms change teachers’ thoughts on what the school subjects should contain and the manner in which teachers educate and make assessments? This project, which is financed by Vetenskapsrådet, belongs to the research area Technology Education. Susanne Engström, who is an associate professor and researcher at the unit Learning in STEM at KTH, is one of two researchers working on this research project.
About the project
This research project is part of the larger project Grading and national exams within year six - how is the teaching of science subjects affected? which is financed by Vetenskapsrådet. The researchers will closely follow how education in the science subjects, in compulsory school (years 4-6), is affected when grades and national exams are introduced in year 6. Grading in year 6 began in the autumn of 2012, and national exams in biology, physics and chemistry were obligatory for year 6-students between 2012 and 2014. In 2015 these exams became optional.
The hypothesis of this project, is that these reforms will change how teachers educate, both in terms of work procedures and choice of content. The teachers will therefore be asked, by the researchers, about how they believe the manner in which they educate and make assessments, as well as their thoughts on what the science subjects “should” include, are affected.
These research questions will be investigated with a longitudinal perspective and the use of focus group interviews, individual interviews, classroom observations and surveys in order to map out traditions in education.
Susanne participated in the ESERA conference in 2015 and 2017. ESERA is short for the European Science Education Research Association.