Trinity Access 21 aims to be a catalyst for social transformation, by supporting people to reach their full educational potential through innovation, research and advocacy.
‘The TA21-College for Every Student approach is different because it changes the dynamic. It changes those default behaviours by changing the conversation. The clarity of the language is key to this success. Now teachers and students are talking the same language. Students and parents are clear from the outset that everybody in the school has their heart set on college. That simple truth binds the students, parents and teachers together-in agreement at last about their common purpose. This isn't about what you can't do or why you can't – this is all about what you can do, what you want to do and how you can do it. . . .’ (Principal, TA21 partner school)
TA21 was established in 2014 with support from Google Ireland and is a collaboration between the Trinity Access Programmes (TAP), Bridge21, the School of Computer Science & Statistics and the School of Education, Trinity College Dublin. The project includes delivery of a new Postgraduate Certificate in 21st Century Teaching and Learning, alongside workshops in technology-mediated, team-based learning and the development of three other ‘core practices’ to encourage a strong, college-going culture: Pathways to College, Leadership through Service and Mentoring.
Outcomes from the TA21 project indicate it is supporting schools to build a strong, college-going culture, where high aspirations are the norm and there is a more active, engaged, teaching and learning environment. Project Year 1 highlights include:
- Over 200 teachers have completed, or are taking modules, on a new Postgraduate Certificate in 21C Teaching and Learning. There was an 89% satisfaction rating among participants in 2014-15.
- One hundred and fifty students on Trinity’s teacher training degree (Professional Masters in Education) completed a module in 21st century learning with technology.
- 1,100 students in the eleven project schools have completed year one of the structured three year project which has included visiting college campuses, completing career planning assignments, leading social change and structured mentoring sessions.
- Teachers report more use of collaboration and technology-mediated learning in the classroom following completion of the Postgraduate Certificate.
- Teachers are more confident about use of technology in their teaching
- Students participating in the TA21-CFES project show more college knowledge after year one and more confidence in their ability to navigate higher education.
- Students are more likely to aspire to go to college and aim for careers that require a degree.
- Students report more active communication with their parents and the wider community about their future.
Trinity Access 21 is a manifestation of Trinity College's commitment to innovative educational outreach, expressed in the 'Engagement with Society' theme of the current Strategic Plan. It is a partnership of Bridge 21, the Trinity Access Programmes and the School of Education to develop and disseminate engaging, innovative, insipirational educational models, grounded in research and advocacy.