Iterative development of engineering in school teaching capacities in Danish primary and lower secondary schools.

Peer Schrøder Daugbjerg, Martin Krabbe Sillasen


We have developed and performed a Teacher Professional Development (TPD) programme for introducing and implementing engineering in the primary and lower secondary school in Denmark. Engineering is a newcomer in Danish schools, and we only had fuzzy ideas about how to introduce it when we started. We, therefore, designed the TPD with an initial development and test phase where teachers acted as co-developers of teaching materials and didactic models. We monitored the process by teacher surveys and interviews, classroom observations and students surveys. The overall project design helped us to optimize didactic models, teaching materials and TPD activities through two iterative cycles before upscaling dissemination and teacher training. 


Engineering in school, teacher professional development, iterative approach, design based learning

Full Text:



Aubusson, P., Ewing, R., Hoban, G. (2009). Action Learning in Schools. London: Routledge,

Carlsen, W. S. (1998). Engineering Design in the Classroom: Is it Good Science Education or Is it Revolting? Research in Science Education, 1998, 28(1), 51-63

Capobianco, B.M., DeLisi, J. & Radloff, J. (2018). Characterizing elementary teachers’ enactment of high-leverage practices through engineering design-based science instruction. Sci Ed. 2018; 102:342–376.

Cunningham, C. M. (2018). Engineering in elementary STEM education. New York: Teachers College Press

Cunningham, C. M., & Carlsen, W. S. (2014). Precollege Engineering Education. In: (Eds.: Lederman, N. G & Abel, S. K.): Handbook of research on science education (pp. 761–772). New York: Routledge.

Haury, D. L. (1993). Assessing Student Performance in Science. ERIC CSMEE Digest. ERIC Identifier: ED359068.

Hynes, M. M. (2007). Developing middle school engineering teachers: Toward expertise in engineering subject matter and pedagogical content knowledge. Boston. Tufts University. Visited 05.03.2019:

Kolodner, J. L. (2002). Facilitating the Learning of Design Practices: Lessons Learned from an Inquiry into Science Education. Journal of Industrial Teacher Education. Volume 39, Number 3, Spring 2002.

Kurt, K. & Pehlivan, M. (2013). Integrated Programs for Science and Mathematics: Review of Related Literature, International Journal of Education in Mathematics, Science and Technology, 1-2, 116-121.

Luft, J. (1998). Rubrics: Design and Use in Science Teacher Education. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association for the Education of Teachers in Science (Minneapolis, MN, January 1998). 13p.

McKenney, S. & Brand-Gruwel, S. (2018). Roles and Competencies of Educational Design Researchers: One Framework and Seven Guidelines. In: (Eds.: Spector, M.. Lockbee, B., Childress, M.): Learning, Design, and Technology. Springer. Cham.

Ministry of Education (2018). Den nationale naturvidenskabsstrategi [Trans.: The national Strategy for STEM-education]. Retreived 06.09.2018:

National Research Council. (2012). A Framework for K-12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas. Committee on a Conceptual Framework for New K-12 Science Education Standards. Board on Science Education, Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

Nielsen, B. L. & Sillasen, M.K. (2014). Science teachers’ individual and social learning related to IBSE in a large-scale, Long-term, collaborative TPD project, In (Eds.: Constantinou, C.P., Papadouris, N. & Hadjigeorgiou, A.): Science Education Research For Evidence-based Teaching and Coherence in Learning: Proceedings of the ESERA 2013 Conference. University of Cyprus.

Nielsen, J.A. (Red.) (2017). Litteraturstudium til arbejdet med en national naturvidenskabsstrategi. [Trans.: Literature study for the work with a national science strategy]. København: Institut for Naturfagenes Didaktik.

Ryoo, K., & Linn, M. C. (2015). Designing and Validating Assessments of Complex Thinking in Science. Theory Into Practice, 54(3), 238–254. Retrieved from

P21. (2018). Partnership for 21st century learning. Retrieved 30.09.2018:

Sillasen, M. K., Daugbjerg, P. S., & Nielsen, K. (2017). Engineering – svaret på naturfagenes udfordringer? [Trans.: Engineering – the answer to challenges in science education?], MONA, 2017-2. 64-83.

The Design-Based Research Collective. (2003). Design-Based Research: An Emerging Paradigm for Educational Inquiry. Educational Researcher, 32(1), 5–8.

Uyeda, J., Brigham, L. A., Luft, J. A. & Washburne, J., S. (2002). Solving Authentic Science Problems: Problem-based Learning Connects Science to the World Beyond School. Science Teacher, 69(1), 24–29.

Van Breukelen, D., Van Meel, A., & De Vries, M. (2017). Teaching strategies to promote concept learning by design challenges. Research in Science & Technological Education, 35(3), 368– 390.

van der Pol, J., Volman, M., & Beishuizen, J. (2010). Scaffolding in teacher-student interaction: A decade of research. Educational Psychology Review. Volume 22, Issue 3, 271–296

van Driel, J. H., Meirink, J. A., van Veen, K. & Zwart, R. C. (2012). Current trends and missing links in studies on teacher professional development in science education: a review of design features and quality of research. Studies in Science Education, 48(2), 129–160.

Categories: Science and Technology in the Digital Era

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: