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The Centre for Research in Information Technology in Education

Overview

The Centre for Research in IT in Education (CRITE) is a collaboration between the School of Education and the School of Computer Science & Statistics (CS&S). Its research agenda is to explore how technology can be used to enhance teaching & learning and it does so largely through the lenses of constructionism and social constructivism. The close synergy between the two academic disciplines involved is a distinguishing feature of the Centre and allows it to develop tools and pedagogical strategies which benefit from both technological and educational perspectives.

Research Focus

Bridge21 is the flagship umbrella project of the Centre. Bridge21 is both a model of "21st century learning" which embodies the use of teamwork and technology and an educational action orientated project aimed at helping transform Irish Second-Level Education.

An extensive range of student learning activities are carried out in a purpose designed learning space on campus (in Oriel House) covering a range of topics ranging from digital media literacy, mathematics, computer programming, peer tutoring, history, information age literacy and second language learning. Bridge21 works closely with schools and teachers to help them adapt the Bridge21 model for use in the mainstream classroom.

Under the umbrella of Trinity Access 21 (TA21) Bridge21 is cooperating closely with Trinity's Outreach Program (TAP) and the Schools of Education and Computer Science & Statistics to provide a suite of offerings to address educational disadvantage with a particular focus on 21st century teaching and learning. This includes offering the Postgraduate Certificate in 21st Century Teaching and Learning for practicing teachers wishing to incorporate such practices into their teaching.

Computational Thinking for Life (CT4L) is a new research focus, building on expertise and interest in the School of Computer Science and Statistics and in the School of Education. The aim of this research is to establish a better evidence base for teaching and learning where computational thinking is involved, both directly in teaching programming and indirectly when employed across the curriculum. CT4L is focussing research on learning computational thinking, curriculum development and continuing professional development in a variety of education settings. This will support a more measured, evidence ¬based response to the demand for more computer science in the curriculum, and a clearer definition of the needs of learners at all stages of their lives, from early learning and primary to adult learners in informal settings.

Convenors

Prof. Brendan Tangney (CS&S) and Dr Keith Johnston