EDiTE at the German School Awards

EDiTE coordinator, supervisor and professor Michael Schratz and EDiTE-ESR Malte Gregorzewski participated in the ceremony of the German School Award on 14 May. The award was launched in 2006 by the Robert Bosch Foundation and the Heidehof Foundation to honour educational achievements and help make them usable to improve the quality of schools across Germany and in German international schools. The competition is based on six quality criteria: academic achievement, approach to diversity, quality of instruction, responsibility, school culture, and school development. Amongst his many duties Michael Schratz serves as the spokesman of the jury, while Malte Gregorzewski, besides working on his PhD-thesis about Leadership for Learning, is part of the Innsbruck-based research group which conducts case studies about selected schools awarded with the German School Award, led by Michael Schratz.

Altogether 15 schools were nominated for the 2018 German School Award and invited to attend the award ceremony in Berlin on 14 May with a delegation of students and teachers. Anja Karliczek, the Federal Minister of Education and Research, presented the award at the event in Berlin. The jury nominated Evangelische Schulzentrum Martinschule in Greifswald as a winner of the 2018 German School Award, which includes a prize of 100,000 euros. Apart of the winner, the top five schools received a prize of 25,000 euros (Gesamtschule Bremen Ost, Franz-Leuninger-Schule in Mengerskirchen, Integrierte Gesamtschule Hannover-List, Annette-von-Droste-Hülshoff-Gymnasium in Münster, and the Matthias-Claudius-Schule in Bochum). All nominated schools that have not been awarded receive a recognition prize of 5,000 euros. Nevertheless, being among 15 selected for the award means that the schools will benefit from the German School Award development programme, and will receive individual process support and participation in seminars over the next two year. Read more here.

EDiTE at EURODOC Conference

EDiTE researcher, Beata Zwierzynska has participated at the annual EURODOC conference (http://www.eurodoc.net/conference-agm-2018) as a national representative of Polish Doctoral Association KRD. KRD is a non-profit organization established in 2005 representing obev 43000 Doctoral Candidates in Poland. Eurodoc is the European Council of Doctoral Candidates and Junior Researchers – a federation of 32 European national associations. It develops policies for early-career development, doctiral training, employment equality, interdisciplinarity, mental health, mobility, Open Science, and reseach integrity.
The Eurodoc Conference 2018: Research career – a living dream? is held in Finland at the University of Tampere. The sessions cover topics from Policy making and current situation of ECRs, developing doctoral training in Europe, career development and improving ECRs’ working conditions, mobility, and many more. Among the guest speakers there are representatives of European Commission, science Europe, Rectors, Eurodoc researchers, Doctoral schools directors, grant and funding institutions, and international networks. During the open discussions several important isues were raised so far: a need to return to a more diverse model of academic assessment instead of concentrating only on publicatins and impact factor, suporting researchers in their further carees and transerable skills, a need for supervisors’ training to work with early-career researchers, unclear meaning of Open Science notion, and a growing problem of researchers’ mental health and poor working conditions.
The conference will be followed by Eurodoc Annual General Meeting (AGM) with lectures, workshops, discussions, and elections for new board members and coordinators of Eurodoc Working Groups.

ELTE EDiTE Workshop

Eövös Loránd University EDiTE researchers participated as chairs and trainers in the workshop Step forward: Moving from theory to practice in EDiTE doctoral research that took place on April 5, 2018, in Budapest, Hungary.

“It was a very valuable workshop in which I got a lot of useful information that is not commonly passed on the daily basis,” said one of the participants.

This workshop organized by Taisia Muzafarova and Abdalhamid Alahmad brought together EDiTE researchers and Ph.D. students from several research areas of the Faculty of Education and Psychology.

The workshop addressed a number of specific issues necessary for successful completion of the programme, namely, complex examination, writing and submitting research proposal, and publishing research articles. The event was targeted to benefit a new cohort of ELTE Ph.D., doctoral programme students and served as a platform for active dialogue between the students and programme professors and administrators. The students had a chance to get an insight into administrative procedures, as well as gain knowledge from senior colleagues.

“It was rewarding to share two years of doctoral experience with our colleagues and share our inquiries for the next phase of the programme with administrators and professors,” said Abdalhamid Alahmad, one of the organizers.

Lecture on European Trends in Teacher Education

On 28 March 2018, our ESR Vasilis Symeonidis was invited to give a lecture for MA in Educational Sciences students at the Department of Education, University of Western Macedonia (UOWM) in Greece. The lecture dealt with the topic ‘European trends in teacher education: The cases of Austria and Hungary’ and was attended by 25 teacher education students. The students were introduced to main theories regarding European integration, themes of European teacher education, and relevant teacher education reforms in Austria and Hungary, followed by discussion with strong comparative education elements.

During this visit, our ESR Vasilis Symeonidis and Dr Vasiliki Papadopoulou, Professor of School Pedagogy, agreed on establishing an Erasmus+ staff mobility agreement between the University of Innsbruck and the University of Western Macedonia, further strengthening the collaboration between the two institutions for the period 2018-2021.

Challenges in transnational cooperation and international collaboration committed to transformational change: Cross-sectoral (personal) learnings

Innsbruck-based EDiTE-ESR Malte Gregorzewski was last week away on an EDiTE outreach mission to Mainz (Germany) which is located next to Wiesbaden and Frankfurt (Main). Malte was invited by a member of the German Federal Association for Innovative Educational Initiatives and enjoyed this privilege by introducing EDiTE in an elevator-pitch-alike situation to 90 executes/leadership personnel from the private sector in Germany and abroad convincing many of them to attend his workshop about “Challenges in transnational cooperation and international collaboration committed to transformational change: Cross-sectoral (personal) learnings”. The workshop aimed at introducing EDiTE more thouroughly than in the pitch and was carefully designed to enable a structured exchange about the participant’s very own personal drivers for transfomational change within their organization. In the second and final step Malte´s goal was to understand more how leaders from the private sector would tackle the obstacles and challenges of a project bringing transformational change on a transnational -European- level to national public sector institutions.
On the one hand the workshop clearly promoted EDiTE to the non-academic field, on the other hand Malte gained some insights about how the participating leaders would deal with challenging transformational processes. From their perspectives and within their framework of responsibility, it proves to be crucial to align and – within the duration of the project – live up to aims and goals of each particular institution towards a common vision and agreed mission; to hold every stakeholder accountable for its action and – sometimes more important – non-action; to commonly develop growth-mindsets and – last but not least – enact a sense of trust and solidarity amongst each party involved in such an endavour.
The participants were both thankful and happy to have such a deep and meaningful exchange about leadership and transfomational change as well as intensive and thoughtful discussions about personal key success drivers towards the fruitful enactment of the emerging future.

 

EDiTE at ATEE Winter Conference 2018

Association for Teacher Education in Europe (ATEE) in collaboration with the host university Hogeschool Utrecht has organised this year’s Winter Conference under the theme Technology and Innovative Learning. The conference took place on 15-16 February in Utrecht and has truly provided a glimpse of the potential of disruptive innovation in education sector.

The first day of the conference featured a number of amazing keynote speeches, including the presentation of Dr. Caroline Pontefract on essential work of the UNRWA-UNESCO in zones most in need of quality education. The second day offered a truly disruptive feeling to the conference, as the organisers partnered with the Perfect Storm conference that aimed at creativity, design thinking and learning. The programme provided a mix of inspiring speeches, such as the one of Dr. Rebecca Ferguson the lead author of the Innovating Pedagogy reports and senior lecturer at the Open University, as well as Ewan McIntosh, the force behind the NoTosh platform. Most significantly, the second day of the conference took place in the creative and innovative working space of the Perfect Storm group settled in an old refurbished furniture factory. The venue itself was unusual setting for an academic conference, one such that hits the point of innovation in education and inspires waves of creativity and disruption.

Our early-stage researcher, Helena Kovacs, was there to represent EDiTE and to talk about her research findings in relation to teacher learning in innovative schools in Portugal. The presentation provoked a discussion not only related to specific learning potential in innovative schools, but also about the necessity for it, as well as the preparedness of teachers and teacher education institutions to actively deal with it.

Next on ATEE conference agenda is the Spring Conference in Bialystok (Poland) from 7-9 June with the overarching topic of Designing Teacher Education and Professional Development for the 21st Century: Current Trends, Challenges and Directions and the Annual Conference in Galve (Sweden) from 20-22 August with the main theme A Future for All – Teaching for a Sustainable Society. It is worthwhile mentioning that the Spring Conference in Poland will also feature Hana Červinková, the programme director of the EDiTE at the University of Lower Silesia. Call for presentations are currently open for both of these ATEE conferences.

 

 

EDiTE at LIEMC 2018: Presenting teachers’ voices from Portugal

 

EDiTE researcher, Nikolett Szelei, presented some findings of her study at the Language, Identity and Education in Multilingual Contexts conference in Dublin, 1-3 February, 2018. The conference gathered a wide range of international studies focusing on bi/multilingualism from the aspects of multiple language acquisition, psycho- and neurolinguistics, translanguaging, early bilingualism and heritage language development, speech processing, language use, pluriliteracies, language policies, multilingual education, multiculturalism, and globalisation. Keynote speaker Prof. Jasone Cenoz addressed „Multilingualism and Translanguaging in Language Learning in School Contexts”, while prof. Elizabeth Lanza talked about „Transnational Families as Public Spaces: Multilingualism, Ideologies and Identity Online”, and Prof. Pádraig Ó Duibhir highlighted „Minority Language (Re)vitalization: The Role of Education”. Nikolett Szelei’s paper presentation focused on how teachers experience linguistic diversity, the challenges they face, and the kind of strategies they apply in multilingual classrooms in Portugal. A special attention was given to students of minority languages in a predominantly Portuguese-language school system. Applying an ecological perspective, Nikolett analysed teachers’ situations embedded in their school contexts, and explored teachers’ perceptions, challenges, needs and strategies in the classroom.  Nikolett finds it important to understand teacher realities in multicultural and multilingual school contexts, as a starting point to improve education in Portugal.

EDiTE at the ICSEI 2018 in Singapore

The International Congress for School Effectiveness and Improvement (ICSEI) is one of such global educational conferences that shouldn’t be missed, and this year again EDiTE had its representatives ready for the challenge. The conference was organised in Singapore between 8 and 12 January under the overarching theme of Deepening School Change for Scaling: Principles, Pathways and Partnerships. From our research rows, EDiTE was represented in Singapore by an early-stage researcher Helena Kovacs and the head of the EDiTE consortium Michael Schratz.

The highlights of the Congress included a number of great keynote speakers including Dr Carol Campbell, Lucy Crehan, Professor Kiyomi Akita and Dr Alicia Grunow, as well as several thought-provoking keynote panel discussions. Already at the beginning of the conference, the head of the EDiTE consortium, Michael Schratz, was awarded a lifetime membership for his dedication to educational research and commitment to ICSEI where he served as a previous president.

During the parallel sessions, Helena Kovacs had presented the outcomes of her collaborative work with Malte Gregorewski, an EDiTE early-stage researcher from Innsbruck who was not able to attend the Congress himself. Their joint work spans over a year and was described as a core value of EDiTE which enables the potential of international collaboration. Titled as A mix that works: insights into Portuguese flagship schools, the presentation provided both an overview of EDiTE that facilitated this collaboration and the exploratory model authored by the Kovacs-Gregozewski team and used to analyse schools in Portugal that they jointly visited during their secondments.

ICSEI 2018 was also an opportunity to explore other parallel sessions describing different educational systems, practices and initiatives that sever for bettering educational experiences and lead to more meaningful outcomes for all involved. Among these, there was a number of sessions on Singaporean system analysed from different angles, providing great insight into this educational super-power. The next International Congress for School Effectiveness and Improvement is planned to take place in Norway, in January 2019.

 

 

Planning Educational Research: A Collaborative Workshop at ELTE

It sometimes happens that what we imagine of our PhD journey is not how it ends up being in reality – this was the starting point provided by the host and one of the main organisers of the Planning Educational Research workshop, Saule Anafinova, the second year international doctoral student at ELTE. The workshop that happened on 14 December 2017 at ELTE Budapest brought together first and second year international doctoral students at ELTE with three EDiTE ESRs for a four-hour session that was an outcome of several preparatory meetings and discussions. The aim of the workshop was focused on understanding the challenges and bottlenecks of planning doctoral research and as such it offered space for a dialogue in ways to overcome them. This type of doctoral meeting will now be established as a regular practice each semester.

Prior to the event, seven ELTE doctoral students were separated into three groups and paired with EDiTE researchers, Tamás Tóth, Andras Fehervari and Helena Kovacs. Each group met on their own and, as part of their preparation, discussed the potential issues and analytically observed their research roadmaps. The three ESRs were involved in their capacities to facilitate the small team discussions and share their experiences of creating project proposals and how they battled some of the problems throughout their research.

The format of the workshop followed an interactive design through which, instead of classic PowerPoint presentations, the doctoral students provided a background to their dilemmas allowing more time for reaction and discussion. Furthermore, an online platform padlet allowed for dissemination of a vast number of useful references that was made available to all participants. Overall, the participants expressed their high satisfaction with the event as well as the groupwork support prior to the workshop.

Experiential Learning Through Exchange Between Portugal And Poland

 

With an aim to support exchange of ideas and good practices, but also as part of his research work, EDiTE’s early stage researcher Wiktor Bernad has organised a binational teacher exchange between Portugal and Poland. Wiktor’s research focuses on pedagogical supervision, teacher cooperation and personal development, and he is exploring this in the two mentioned countries, thus providing an opportunity for an exchange and learning was a great way to deepen the aspects of his research work and to give something back to the practitioners. This was also a perfect opportunity for Wiktor, whose home university is in Lisbon, to start off his secondment in Poland and introduce himself as both a researcher and a valuable capacity for a school he will work with.

The first day of the exchange event took place on 31 August 2017 in Wrocław, Poland and was hosted by the Polish primary school. The principal and vice-principal of the school, welcomed the representatives (the principal and the project coordinator) of the school cluster from Portugal who arrived together with Wiktor to the Wrocław primary school’s yearly opening conference. Approximately 70 teachers that work in the school joined this occasion.

The principal of the Polish school introduced Wiktor and the two guests from Portugal, after which Wiktor presented his research, himself and had talked about pedagogical supervision. His lecture included the core of international literature and evidence from the case study Wiktor developed based on his work in Portugal. This was a great introduction to the workshop provided by the two guests from the Portuguese school cluster. They presented a thorough overview of how the project of pedagogical supervision developed and became an integral part of the school culture, how it spread across the teacher community and what benefits it bore.

During the second day of the exchange, on 4 September, the Portuguese guests and Wiktor gave a more practical outline through which they talked about different examples but also provided space from Polish teachers to try some of the pedagogical supervision practices. Simulations of activities, through group work and creation of internal rules, gave the group of around 70 Polish teachers a taste of how this collaborative peer-learning technique could look.

This event was a truly valuable interaction between teachers from two different national contexts that not only provided opportunities for teachers to talk about their pedagogical realities, innovations, fears and learn good practices, but also to build on possible further building blocks of grass-root European exchange.