Research Themes

Research themes that will be put forward in the historical approach concern in-depth study of pedagogical theories and educational issues from the perspective of their origins and development over time. What is required is not only knowledge about theories of historiography, but also methodological mastery in the  research of sources, their description and interpretation, the comparison between past and contemporary features.

Research themes concerning the theoretical approach regard in-depth studies of pedagogical knowledge with different degrees of complexity, pinpointing theoretical constructs regarding general pedagogical  studies, as well as reflective-critical dimensions, currently of key importance to conceptualize new themes of inquiry and pressing educational and training issues, to be tackled by means of educational research, planning and consequent practices. Highly developed epistemological reflection is also of relevance, in analyzing several dimensions of thought implied in pedagogical theories, promoting a comparison between their supporting logical frameworks.

Research themes regarding the institutional approach regard the ways in which educational, instructional and training processes are implemented and delivered within different institutions and organisations. This approach allows in-depth study of problems and perspectives connected to changes in institutional structures within contemporary societies (changes in the family as a social institution; school reforms; the relationships between schooling, training and the world of business; continuing education, and so on), but also comparative methodologies juxtaposing international and national realities, with particular attention to European contexts.

Research themes concerned with the instructional approach express specific interest in teaching/learning processes. Scientific literature on the topic regards the following aspects: interaction between theories and practices of teaching; the methods for promoting effective learning, taking into account age and individual differences; educational research aimed at innovation in teaching; the differentiation of teaching and  training programmes, courses and routes in diverse contexts of activity; educational changes and reforms in institutional contexts of action. References to current transformations in the Italian school system as well as in those of European countries, are put centre stage, as connected with new curricular conceptions, differentiated methods of planning, evaluation and tools development in teaching. A relevant area regards teacher education, which represents a political and cultural aim to be pursued with commitment, on the European and international level.

Research themes concerning the technological approach, considering teaching as “educational systems technologies”, explore the unfolding of organizational modes for education and training activities, in the development, management and evaluation stages of teaching, intentionally aimed at promoting and enhancing learning. Key elements of this framework are “information and communication technologies",  viewed in the interaction between the following dimensions: technical-interactive for media; representational-cognitive for languages, and methodological-instructional for teaching and learning strategies.

The technological approach, by facilitating educational and social systems' interfacing, can enhance the potential of educational contextualisation, distinguishing process technologies (analysis, design, production, management, evaluation, development) from product technologies (audio-visuals, ICT, telematics, multimedia).

Research areas related to intercultural approaches aim at in-depth analysis of multicultural aims and values in education, as well as specific theoretical and methodological competences required in this research field. The international pedagogical debate focuses on the relationships between education, schooling and diversity, and between intercultural education and equity. In democratic societies, multiculturalism stems from the variety of contexts subjects may belong to, but it becomes wider and more complex in facing multi-ethnicity, with challenges for tolerance and citizenship. This highlights the  increasing importance of continuing, lifelong instruction and education, in order to promote dialogue aimed at integration and social development.

Last modified: Wednesday, 25 November 2015, 11:59 AM