RCTQ and SiMERR staff out and about in the Provinces
Staff of SiMERR, RCTQ and Bicol University
- Mayon Volcano, Albay Province
During March RCTQ staff have been out and about in the Provinces testing over 6000 fourth year graduating pre-service teachers at 10 universities. SiMERR staff Joy Hardy and Rebecca Spence, were lucky enough to be invited to participate in the testing at Palawan State University and Bicol University. So, with suitcases filled with the knowledge content tests and the Teachers Strengths and Needs Assessment (TSNA) tests off we went. The testing involved giving fourth year students graduating in elementary and secondary teaching a range of content tests: Maths, Science, English and Filipino, as well as allowing them to identify their skills knowledge and attitudes towards teaching through the TSNA assessment tool. All students were willing participants and the testing process went off very smoothly. Analysis of the results will assist RCTQ to identify pre-service teacher’s needs and to work with the Department of Education in the Philippines to recommend new pre-service professional development courses.
We also got to visit the Mayon Volcano. an active volcano that last erupted in 2006.
Research Centre for Teacher Quality progress with the Teacher Development Needs Study (TDNS)
SiMERR and RCTQ staff are busy rolling out the Teacher Development Needs Study (TDNS). The TDNS Project will assist the Department of Education in the Philippines (DepED) to determine development programming for in-service teachers in terms of 1) teaching competence/pedagogical knowledge and skills; and 2) subject content and pedagogical content knowledge.The study is designed to reveal not only what teachers at different career stages ‘know’ but also what they ‘do’ in the classroom. To this end, data from all 17 regions were made available to RCTQ and SiMERR comprising the responses of 60,800 teachers. These data are in the mid stages of analysis, and to date the study has:
- determined the psychometric characteristics of the current Teacher Assessment tool in determining the teachers’ strengths and needs for professional development;
- piloted the subject content and pedagogical content knowledge of Grade Six and Eight teachers in Mathematics, Science, English and Filipino; and
- begun planning ways to correlate teacher variables, subject content and pedagogical knowledge and skills with student performance in different subject areas.
Presently, RCTQ and SiMMER staff are preparing a report for DepED on the findings so far, whilst also preparing for nation wide testing of Grade Six and Eight teachers subject content knowledge in Mathematics, Science, English and Filipino, which will be followed up later in the year by qualitative, field-based investigation of teachers’ classroom behaviour.
QuickSmart Soon to Break 1000 School Milestone
‘Never in our wildest dreams did we expect QuickSmart to be so popular’ said co-developers Professors John Pegg and Lorraine Graham as they reviewed plans for 2014.
QuickSmart, a numeracy and literacy program conducted by SiMERR, is expected to be implemented in its 1000th school in Australia during 2014. This is an amazing journey from the initial trial in two schools in 2001.
Following a low-key roll-out in its early years, the look and feel of the program material was significantly upgraded in 2008. With the support of education jurisdictions and significant Federal funding to schools the program has grown dramatically in the past five years, adding over 800 new schools.
Professor Pegg said ‘the outcomes recorded from approximately 25,000 students tell a compelling story of the efficacy of the program’. Independent analysis of QuickSmart student’s national test results show that these students consistently achieve up to three years’ academic growth over a 30-week period.
SiMERR is expecting another busy year for QuickSmart. Some time in April it is likely that staff of the 1000th QuickSmart school will be participating in their initial professional learning workshop and preparing to implement the program at their school.
UNE to help establish education research centre in the Philippines
The University of New England has won a $6 million AusAID grant to set up a National Research Centre for Teacher Quality in the Philippines.
The nationally competitive grant will fund a project in which staff members from the UNE-based National Centre of Science, ICT and Mathematics Education for Rural and Regional Australia (SiMERR National Centre) will help the Philippines Normal University (PNU) to establish the new Centre on PNU’s Manila campus.
Read the full article on the UNE blog
$558,000 boost for UNE’s Asia ConneXions program
The University of New England’s Asia ConneXions project has been awarded $558,000 by the Australian Government through the National Broadband Network – Enabled Education and Skills Services (NBN-EESS) program. The Asia ConneXions project was one of 12 projects picked for the NBN-EESS program nationwide, and the only one from UNE and Armidale.
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Teach Learn Share Database
Both the QuickSmart Programs have been accepted into the Teach Learn Share Database.
The Teach, Learn, Share database is a national resource where educators and education systems can share their most effective approaches to literacy and numeracy teaching and learning in Australia.
The database includes descriptions of successful literacy and numeracy initiatives being delivered in a diverse range of school settings, and provides links to relevant research in the areas of literacy and numeracy.
For more information visit http://www.teachlearnshare.gov.au/
Secondary students enjoy the challenge of UNE Maths Day
Keen young mathematicians from 39 secondary schools throughout northern NSW met at the University of New England last Friday (11 May) for a day of stimulating competition.
To read the full article click the link below
AHS claim math prize
Armidale High School Principal, Anne Matley, shared a mathematical moment with Year 8 students who were more than happy to discuss their experiences at the annual Year 8 Mathematics Day held at the University of New England on Friday, May 11.
To read more click the link below.
Australian-Korean ConneXion meets Julia Gillard
Julia Gillard while in Korea met with students from Gyeseong Catholic Girls High School who are involved in the Australian-Korean ConneXion Project supported by SiMERR. The event was covered by local and national news. Links to some of these videos and articles follow.
SiMERR Website Gets a New Look
Happy Christmas from everyone at the SiMERR National Centre. In honor of the occasion the SiMERR website has been given a new look. I hope you all like it. You can see the new look SiMERR website at http://www.une.edu.au/simerr.