Modelling using digital design tools is a relatively new element in secondary technology education, though modelling using concrete material is common and has been practiced regularly. Many technology teachers now teach modelling using digital design tools, to meet the new criteria in the syllabus concerning problem solving and documentation using digital technology. However, there is a lack of knowledge concerning how technology teachers teach modelling using digital design tools and how they choose content and present it to the pupils. It is known, though, that teachers’ experiences affect how they plan the lessons. Therefore, the aim of this study is to investigate technology teachers’ experiences to gain more understanding in this particular area of technology education. Taking a phenomenographic approach, twelve semi-structured interviews with secondary technology teachers were conducted. The results show that teachers have different experiences teaching modelling using digital design tools, and four categories have emerged: 1) Handling the software and using simple geometries, 2) Using ready-made objects from databases, 3) Manufacturing via 3D-printers, and 4) Design and problem solving. The results indicate that teachers teach modelling using digital design tools with different aims; the intended object of learning differs. The results also indicate that teachers experience that they lack knowledge of teaching modelling using digital design tools and therefore have difficulties teaching in this area, which can affect the pupils’ problem-solving skills. The results, described in this article, can be used as a basis for further discussion.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Helen Brink, Ass. Prof Nina Kilbrink, Prof Niklas Gericke
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