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Teacher research in computing education

The Teacher Inquiry in Computing education (TICE) project provides classroom teachers with the opportunity to work with experienced researchers and academics to carry out their own research.  The goal is to enable teachers to take a deep dive into a curriculum topic, a pedagogical approach, or a new resource or to address a wider issue such as gender diversity or accessibility to inform a change in practice.

TICE was first run in 2016 with Computing At School, with the generous support of Google and is being run again in 2023/2024 with over 20 teachers participating. The second iteration is called TICE2. We now hope to be able to run this initiative every year or at least every two years.

As well as an initiative to support teachers this is also a research project on how teacher research is a valuable form of professional development for teachers of computing.

Organisers

Supported by


Between October 2023 and June 2024, 22 Teachers from across England participated in a wide variety of action research projects. Participants were a mixture of both primary and secondary classroom Computing teachers. 

Study design

TICE2 is a rerun of the TICE project which ran from 2015/2016. We are pleased to be able to run it again, and would hope to do this on an annual basis. The project was launched in September/October 2023 via the Computing At School teacher network.  Teachers were invited to express an interest to participate and invited to an introductory webinar.

Teachers are given a free choice of topic, the aim being for them to look at an issue that either interests or concerns them in their own school context.  They are assigned to a volunteer helper and invited to attend a series of webinars and drop-in sessions to keep informed about process and progress. Projects started in December 2023 and are due to be completed by May 2024. Teachers will have the opportunity to present their projects to other teachers at the CAS Conference in July 2024

One of the mechanisms of the project is to provide support by matching academics to teachers to work collaboratively on a project together.  We are actively researching whether this is a valuable and potentially scalable approach to engaging teachers in research. 

Study resources

CAS Teacher Research Projects 2016

Publications

Sentance, S., Sinclair, J., Simmons, C., & Csizmadia, A. (2018). Classroom-based research projects for computing teachers: Facilitating professional learning. ACM Transactions on Computing Education (TOCE), 18(3), 1-26.

Sentance, S., Sinclair, J., Simmons, C., & Csizmadia, A. (2016). Teacher research projects in computing. In Proceedings of the 11th Workshop in Primary and Secondary Computing Education (pp. 110-111). Poster paper.

Other materials

Teacher Inquiry in Computing Education: Empowering teachers to conduct action research (blog article)
Teacher Research in Computing – will you join us? (blog article)