The promotion of mental health and well-being in our students, faculty, and staff is important to the University of Calgary. Given the symbiotic relation between health and education, Universities are increasingly recognized as places to promote the health and well-being of the people who learn, work and live within them. Research-intensive universities create cultures that demand high performance while promoting excellence and achievement, and also carry the risk of stress, stigma, and challenges to mental health. With the recognition of the importance of promoting mental health and intervening to address illness in a timely way, we join groups across Canada and beyond that are committed to enhancing the mental health of university students, faculty, and staff.
This paper deals with the problematic nature of the transition between education and the workplace. A smooth transition between education and the workplace requires learners to develop an integrated knowledge base, but this is problematic as most educational programmes offer knowledge and experiences in a fragmented manner, scattered over a variety of subjects, modules and (work) experiences. To overcome this problem, we propose a design approach and shifting the educational focus of attention from individual learners to learning environments. The broader notion of learning environments facilitates transitions by establishing horizontal connections between schools and the workplace. The main argument of this paper is that combining or connecting aspects of school-based settings only is not sufficient to ensure learners will develop an integrated knowledge base. The concept and examples of “hybrid learning environment” show how formal, school-based learning and workplace experiences can be closely connected. The paper offers a framework of four coherent perspectives that can help to understand the complex nature of such environments and to design hybrid learning environments: the “agency perspective”, the “spatial perspective”, the “temporal perspective”, and the “instrumental perspective”. The framework is applied to three cases taken from vocational education in the Netherlands to describe what hybrid learning environments look like in contemporary educational practice.
This working paper seeks to explore the reasons why educational attainment in the immigrant population varies between North America and Europe. Specifically, the examples of Canada and Switzerland are used as Canada has an immigrant population with a typically higher rate of post-secondary education than that of the domestic population, while in Switzerland the opposite is true. Analysis shows that while differences in immigration policy play a significant role, there are many other variables which affect educational attainment in immigrants, such as the education level of the parents, source region and home language.
Le présent document de travail tente d‟explorer les raisons pour lesquelles le niveau de formation de la population immigrée varie entre l‟Amérique du Nord et l‟Europe. Il s‟attache plus particulièrement aux exemples du Canada et de la Suisse, les diplômés de l‟enseignement post-secondaire étant typiquement plus nombreux dans la population immigrée que dans la population autochtone au Canada, tandis qu‟en Suisse, c‟est l‟inverse qui s‟observe. L‟analyse montre que si les différences en termes de politiques d‟immigration jouent un rôle important, il existe également de nombreuses autres variables qui influent sur le niveau de formation de la population immigrée, telles que le niveau de formation des parents, la région d‟origine et la langue parlée à la maison.
OECD’s Centre for Educational Research and Innovation (CERI) has worked on Open Educational Resources (OER) in the past, which led to the publication Giving Knowledge for Free – the Emergence of Open Educational Resources (2007). This working paper thus builds on exploratory and forward-looking research in CERI and invites countries to consider the policy implications of the expansion of OER, its benefits and associated challenges.
A small OER expert group was established to discuss the subject, link it to other relevant developments in the field, and develop a draft questionnaire for member countries in order to collect information regarding the policy context related to OER. The expert group met in June 2011 and for a second time in September 2011. The questionnaire was sent to the 34 OECD member countries in August 2011. It outlined a short informative note about the benefits and challenges of OER. The responses to the questionnaire are analysed in this document.
Building on an earlier 2008 summary prepared for OECD by Marlene Scardamalia and Carl Bereiter, this paper by Gesa S. E. van den Broek provides a more extensive discussion of approaches described as “research based innovation.” Fostering Communities of Learning is a constructivist approach in which teachers help students discover important curricular concepts. Learning by Design is an inquiry-based science learning programme based on case-based reasoning models. Central Conceptual Structures (CCS) theory describes developmental changes in children’s thinking and what is needed to progress through stages in specific cognitive domains. Web-based Inquiry Science Environment (WISE) is an internet-based adaptive learning environment building on the principles of knowledge integration. Cognitive Tutors and ACT-R theory are intelligent adaptive software programmes that provide students with scaffolded instruction and feedback. Direct Instruction aims to accelerate learning through clear scripted direct instruction by the teacher and scaffolded practice aimed at student involvement and error reduction. Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) is for disadvantaged students especially to engage in Socratic dialogues about ideas and strategies to solve computer game-based problems. Knowledge Building is a constructivist teaching approach centred on building knowledge and creating knowledge communities.
Innovation is essential for the education sector.
The ways in which curriculum decision making is organised reflects different implicit approaches on how educational systems pertain to promote innovation in education. Curriculum holds an outstanding place when seeking to promote innovation in education, as it reflects the vision for education by indicating knowledge, skills and values to be taught to students. It may express not only what should be taught to students, but also how the students should be taught. Curriculum innovations can include new subjects, combinations of old subjects or cross-cutting learning objectives. They may also take a form of new content, concepts, sequencing, time allocation or pedagogy.
This paper analyses business-driven innovation in education by looking at education-related patents. It first draws a picture of the challenges for innovation in the formal education sector, which suffers from a poor knowledge ecology: science is hardly linked to core teaching and administrative practices. It then turns to a common indicator of innovation: patents. In the case of education, patents typically cover educational tools. An analysis of education-related patents over the past 20 years shows a clear rise in the production of highly innovative educational technologies by businesses, typically building on advances in information and communication technology. While this increase in educational innovations may present new opportunities for the formal education sector, the emerging tool industry currently targets the nonformal education rather than the formal education system. We shortly discuss why business entrepreneurs may be less interested in the market of formal education.
Cet article porte sur l’innovation entrepreneuriale dans le secteur de l’éducation, à partir d’une analyse des dépôts de brevets dans le secteur éducatif. Premièrement, il propose un tableau des défis de l’innovation dans le secteur de l’éducation formelle, dont l’écologie du savoir est faible : la science y est peu liée avec le cœur des pratiques pédagogiques et administratives. L’étude porte ensuite sur un indicateur courant de l’innovation : les brevets. Dans le cas de l’éducation, les brevets couvrent généralement des « outils » éducatifs. L’analyse des brevets éducatifs durant les vingt dernières années montre une claire croissance de la production de technologies éducatives hautement innovantes par des entreprises privées, qui s’appuient souvent sur les progrès des technologies d’information et de communication. Bien que cette croissance des innovations éducatives puisse donner de nouvelles opportunités au secteur formel de l’éducation, l’industrie émergente d’outils éducatifs cible actuellement les secteurs informels d’éducation. Nous discutons brièvement les raisons pour lesquelles les entrepreneurs privés semblent moins intéressés par le secteur de l’éducation formelle.
This paper presents an overview of gender differences in education outcomes in OECD countries. A rich set of indicators describes the improvement of educational attainment among women over the past decades, and various dimensions of male under-performance in education. Possible explanatory factors include incentives provided by changing employment opportunities for women, demographic trends, as well as the higher sensitivity of boys to disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds. Gender differences in field of study and in performance by subject are found to be related to attitudes and self-perceptions towards academic subjects, which are in turn influenced by social norms. A number of policy options to address gender gaps are presented in the final section of the paper.
Ce document présente un aperçu des différences entre garçons et filles dans les résultats scolaires des pays de l’OCDE. Les indicateurs utilisés décrivent l’amélioration du niveau d’instruction des femmes au cours des dernières décennies et les différents domaines dans lesquels les garçons obtiennent des résultats inférieurs par rapport aux filles. Parmi les explications avancées figurent les politiques encourageant les opportunités d’emploi pour les femmes, les tendances démographiques ainsi que la vulnérabilité accrue des garçons issus de milieux socio-économiques défavorisés. Les différences entre hommes et femmes dans le domaine des études et dans les résultats scolaires par discipline tiennent aux mentalités et à l’autoperception des disciplines, et sont elles-mêmes influencées par les normes sociales. La dernière section du document présente un certain nombre de mesures pouvant combler les disparités entre hommes et femmes.
This report examines skill trends in 24 OECD countries over the past several decades. The skill measures used include broad occupation groups, country-specific direct measures of skill requirements from international surveys, and direct skill measures from the Occupational Information Network (O*NET) database applied to both United States and European labour force surveys. Each kind of data has its own strengths and limitations but they tell a consistent story.
Creativity is widely accepted as being an important outcome of schooling. Yet there are many different views about what it is, how best it can be cultivated in young people and whether or how it should be assessed. And in many national curricula creativity is only implicitly acknowledged and seldom precisely defined. This paper offers a five dimensional definition of creativity which has been trialled by teachers in two field trials in schools in England. The paper suggests a theoretical underpinning for defining and assessing creativity along with a number of practical suggestions as to how creativity can be developed and tracked in schools. Two clear benefits of assessing progress in the development of creativity are identified: 1) teachers are able to be more precise and confident in developing young people’s creativity, and 2) learners are better able to understand what it is to be creative (and to use this understanding to record evidence of their progress). The result would seem to be a greater likelihood that learners can display the full range of their creative dispositions in a wide variety of contexts.
La créativité est largement acceptée comme étant un résultat scolaire important. Pourtant il y a beaucoup d’opinions différentes sur ce qu’elle est, comment on peut la cultiver chez les jeunes gens, et si et comment on devrait l’évaluer. De plus, dans beaucoup de programmes scolaires, la créativité n’est reconnue que de manière implicite et rarement définie de manière précise. Ce document offre une définition de la créativité reposant sur cinq dimensions, qui a été testée par des enseignants durant deux expériences de terrain dans des écoles en Angleterre. Le document propose un soubassement théorique pour définir et évaluer la créativité ainsi que nombre de suggestions pratiques sur le développement et le suivi de la créativité à l’école. Deux bénéfices clairs d’évaluer le progrès dans le développement de la créativité sont identifiés : 1) les enseignants peuvent être plus précis et confiants lorsqu’ils développent la créativité des jeunes gens, et 2) les apprenants sont davantage en mesure de comprendre ce que « être créatif » signifie (et à utiliser cette compréhension pour documenter et relater leur progrès). Le résultat semble être une plus grande probabilité que les apprenants témoignent de toute l’étendue de leurs dispositions à la créativité dans un large éventail de contextes.
Previous research has shown that fathers taking some time off work around childbirth, especially periods of leave of 2 or more weeks, are more likely to be involved in childcare related activities than fathers who do not do so. Furthermore, evidence suggests that children with fathers who are ‘more involved’ perform better during the early years than their peers with less involved fathers. This paper analyses data of four OECD countries — Australia; Denmark; United Kingdom; United States — to describe how leave policies may influence father’s behaviours when children are young and whether their involvement translates into positive child cognitive and behavioural outcomes. This analysis shows that fathers’ leave, father’s involvement and child development are related. Fathers who take leave, especially those taking two weeks or more, are more likely to carry out childcare related activities when children are young. This study finds some evidence that children with highly involved fathers tend to perform better in terms of cognitive test scores. Evidence on the association between fathers’ involvement and behavioural outcomes was however weak. When data on different types of childcare activities was available, results suggest that the kind of involvement matters. These results suggest that what matters is the quality and not the quantity of father-child interactions.
The main task of the Working Group on Adult Learning of the INES Labour Market, Economic and Social Outcomes network is the development of indicators on Adult Learning for publication in the annual volume “Education at a Glance” of the OECD. As part of this task, a list of 18 policy goals/issues in the domain of adult learning have been identified through broad consultations. After identifying the policy goals a theoretical framework was developed in order to be able to systematically select indicators for monitoring them. The theoretical framework is based on a systemic approach, identifying context, input, processes, output and outcome of the system of Adult Learning. The policy goals to be monitored and the theoretical framework constitute the basis for the definition and selection of a list of indicators which might be published in EAG. The third element in the development of international indicators is the existence of comparable data of good quality. The paper includes a list of 44 indicators which are practical to publish with existing data sources or with data sources likely to become available in the near future. The coverage of the policy areas is uneven, reflecting both the focus of existing data sources and the difficulties of some data gathering exercises.
Learning Study is a collaborative, action-research approach to improve the effectiveness of student learning by enhancing the professional competence of teachers. This is achieved through the collaborative construction of the pedagogical content knowledge enabling them better to teach specific objects of learning. Through inquiry and authentic learning by the teachers, it takes account of students’ prior knowledge in the lesson planning and so creates an authentic learning environment for the students. This paper explains how the Learning Study approach relates to the set of approaches known as “Lesson Study” and how it incorporates the principles for high quality learning proposed by the OECD project on Innovative Learning Environments (ILE) in its design and implementation. It examines how Learning Study helps to integrate the factors comprising innovative learning environments. It analyses the critical conditions that support its development and practice in schools and in professional learning networks and education systems in general.
Many international comparisons of education over the past 50 years have included some measure of students’ opportunity to learn (OTL) in their schooling. Results have typically confirmed the common sense notion that a student’s exposure in school to the assessed concepts, operationalized in some sort of time metric, is related to what the student has learned as measured by the assessment. What has not been demonstrated is a connection between the specifics of what students have encountered through schooling and their performance on any sort of applied knowledge assessment such as PISA. This paper explores this issue in 2012 PISA which, for the first time, included several OTL items on the student survey. OTL demonstrated a significant relationship with student performance on both the main paper-and-pencil literacy assessment as well as the optional computer-based assessment at all three levels – country, school and student. In every country at least one if not all three of the constructed OTL indices – exposure to word problems, formal mathematics topics, and applied mathematics problems – demonstrated a significant relationship to the overall PISA measure of mathematics literacy as well as the four sub areas of change and relationships, shapes and space, quantity, and uncertainty and data. Additionally, results indicated that variability in OTL was related to student performance having implications for equality of opportunity.
This paper explores the nature of complexity theory and its applications for educational reform. It briefly explains the history of complexity theory and identifies the key concepts of complex adaptive systems, and then moves on to define the differences between simple, complicated, and complex approaches to educational reform. Special attention is given to work currently underway in the fields of healthcare, emergency management and ecology that draws on complexity theory to build more resilient and robust response systems capable of adapting to changing needs and of identifying key pressure points in the system. Finally, this paper presents several examples of educational reform programmes undertaken worldwide that have implemented complexity theory principles to achieve positive results. It also recommends involving multiple stakeholders across the different levels of governance structure, increasing lateral knowledge-sharing between schools and districts, and transforming policy interventions to bring greater flexibility to the reform process. This move toward feedback-driven adaptive reform allows for better targeting of programmes to specific contexts and may prove a key way forward for educational policymakers
Existing estimates of the labor-market returns to human capital give a distorted picture of the role of skills across different economies. International comparisons of earnings analyses rely almost exclusively on school attainment measures of human capital, and evidence incorporating direct measures of cognitive skills is mostly restricted to early-career workers in the United States. Analysis of the new PIAAC survey of adult skills over the full lifecycle in 22 countries shows that the focus on early-career earnings leads to underestimating the lifetime returns to skills by about one quarter. On average, a one-standard-deviation increase in numeracy skills is associated with an 18 percent wage increase among prime-age workers. But this masks considerable heterogeneity across countries. Eight countries, including all Nordic countries, have returns between 12 and 15 percent, while six are above 21 percent with the largest return being 28 percent in the United States. Estimates are remarkably robust to different earnings and skill measures, additional controls, and various subgroups. Intriguingly, returns to skills are systematically lower in countries with higher union density, stricter employment protection, and larger public-sector shares.
Future economic growth and social progress in knowledge societies rely increasingly on innovation. Innovators and entrepreneurs require skill sets for innovation such as technical skills, thinking and creativity skills, as well as social and behavioural skills. Higher education plays an important role in providing people with skills for innovation, but a number of important questions remain as to what kind of higher education teaching can be conducive to the strengthening of skills for innovation.
This paper proposes a new measure of skills mismatch that combines information about skill proficiency, self-reported mismatch and skill use. The theoretical foundations underling this measure allow identifying minimum and maximum skill requirements for each occupation and to classify workers into three groups, the well-matched, the under-skilled and the over-skilled. The availability of skill use data further permit the computation of the degree of under and over-usage of skills in the economy. The empirical analysis is carried out using the first wave of the OECD Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC) and the findings are compared across skill domains, labour market status and countries.
Human capital is key for economic growth. Not only is it linked to aggregate economic performance but also to each individual’s labour market outcomes. However, a skilled population is not enough to achieve high and inclusive growth, as skills need to be put into productive use at work. Thanks to the availability of measures of both the proficiency and the use of numerous types of skills, the Survey of Adult Skills offers a unique opportunity to advance knowledge in this area and this paper presents and discusses evidence on both these dimensions with a particular focus on their implications for labour market policy. This paper explores the role played in the labour market by skill proficiency in the areas of literacy, numeracy and problem solving in technology-rich environments. It also shows how skills use, not only proficiency, affects a number
of key labour market phenomena, such as the gender wage gap. Finally, the paper combines information on skill proficiency, educational attainment, skill use and qualification requirements to construct indicators of qualification and skills mismatch and to explore their causes and consequences.
Trust is indispensable for social and economic relations; it is the glue that holds organisations together and appears to work somehow mysteriously. Overall, trust is a ubiquitous ingredient in policymaking and implementation across many governance systems including education, whether it concerns accountability mechanisms, capacity building or strategic thinking. Yet our understanding, conceptualisation and measurement of these issues remain limited. This working paper asks the question: what is trust and how does it matter for governance, especially in education systems? It explores why trust is key for policymaking and where it fits within current governance issues. The paper examines different definitions of trust, presents various ways of measuring trust and discusses some of their benefits and limitations. It proposes a definition of trust made up of three parts: trust as an expectation, a willingness to be vulnerable and a risk-taking act. The paper then presents a simple model of trust and governance and reviews the relationship between trust and different elements in education systems, such as complexity, asymmetries in information and power, collaboration/cooperation, monitoring and accountability, and professionalisation. It concludes with some policy findings and identifies several research gaps.