Research Development Groups

Teacher Education: Curriculum and Partnerships

Chair: Lois Paretti, University of Nevada Las Vegas

The basic question we are examining is “How should teachers be prepared?” Questions include: What are the intentional and scaffolded structures for a teacher education curriculum that are integrated with field and clinical experiences? How can we integrate research, practice, and a strong social ethic? The relationship of the preparation curriculum to the public-school curriculum is another area for examination. The RDC aims to design new ways to prepare teachers for complexity and accelerating rates of change in the changing socio-political contexts locally and globally. Educators and researchers will collaborate to explore ways to connect formal and informal educational settings and to share theoretical and ethical approaches for this work.

The emphasis on high stakes student testing has left a void in the overall development of the whole child in schools, affecting the health/wellness of all children. We will share research, theory and practice in order to change Initial and ongoing teacher education, encouraging innovation and exploring the possibilities of new developments in preparation initial preparation and in-service Teacher Education looking for improved professionalism of teachers. How do local, regional, and global knowledge networks foster innovation in teacher education and address the needs of the knowledge society?

Inclusion and Social Justice in Teacher Education in Global Contexts

Chairs: Jenene Burke, Federation University Australia; Marcelle Cacciattolo, Victoria University Australia
Dianne Toe, Deakin University

Inclusion embraces diversity within a social justice and human rights framework. Inclusive standpoints seek to facilitate access, participation, challenge and success for all people. An array of critical traditions and methodologies that interrogate educational issues from a political, cultural, structural and social perspective are explored. Human diversity calls for an activist response to ensure that global and local social justice and equity in education are achieved. In this research group the concept of social justice is interpreted through the lens of unequal power relations in, to and through education. In this sub-theme, attention is directed towards building the capacities of educators to understand and respond to diversity through a standpoint of global equity and justice. In an inclusive environment, every individual is unique, important and capable; learning is effective for all. In other words, inclusion concerns everyone in all contexts

  Inclusion and Social Justice in Teacher Education in Global Contexts Facebook group

Global Teacher Education: Networking Models for Knowledge Building Innovation

Chairs:  Mercè Gisbert Cervera, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Spain; Mireia Usart Rodríguez, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Spain

This RDG aims to study global and local knowledge building for professional teacher development. The conditions of these networks need to meet to become sustainable and scalable in different contexts and levels of teacher readiness, institutional support, and good technological infrastructure. We include research and evaluation to examine the impact of such innovation.

Transformation and Information 4.0

Chairs: Ray Gallon, Transformation Society; Neus Lorenzo Galés, Societat Catalana de Pedagogia

Our work in The Transformation Society spans many disciplines, education being one of the most important. We are also concerned with information and communication in general. In that context, we are part of a consortium known as The Information 4.0 Consortium ( It was formed to accompany the development of technologies known as Industry 4.0 with an informational component that will, among other things, ensure a humanist approach to the deployment of technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things, Bionics, Augmented Reality, etc. We consider this type of action to be critical in this moment of transition, when the nature of society is being remodelled by technology, and enterprises are now creating positions such as “algorithm ethicist” in recognition of the challenges that face us all.

Early Childhood in a Global Context

Chairs: Karen Felstead, Federation University Australia; Chandrika Devarakonda, University of Chester, UK; Alison Watson, Federation University Australia; Susan Emmett, Federation University Australia

The early childhood years are critically important in terms of the quality of experiences children receive in their first few years of life. The literature has clearly established the significant impact the early years have on a child’s brain development which then, in turn, will influence the nature and extent of a child’s adult capabilities. Brain development pivots on the multifaceted relationship between nature and nurture with opportunities created with positive environments [warm, responsive, and stimulating relationships] and risks generated by stress, neglect, lack of stimulation, and violence.

Children do not live in a vacuum and their development and wellbeing is influenced by many factors and systems/settings. Early childhood practice and children’s welfare cannot be understood without considering the social, cultural, historical, and political context and the relationships among and between the different contexts.

In this research group each child is considered to be unique, important, and capable encompassing the holistic development of all children. Each child is equally entitled to be included in high-quality early childhood experiences. Teacher educators and researchers will collaborate sharing research, theory and practice to explore and discuss ways early childhood practitioners, across the globe, positively support the early development of children within their educational settings.

Politics and Policy in Teacher Education

Chairs:Maxine Cooper, Federation University Australia; Jim Alouf (retiring)

This RDG is focused on the relationship of politics and policy in a local and global context. What are the issues we need to investigate at the global, national, regional and local in teacher education? How has policy in teacher education been influenced by politics? Thoughtful research-based reflections on these complex issues of change in policy and politics in teaching are encouraged.