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Evaluering av forskningsprogrammene PRAKSISFOU og UTDANNING2020

Report
Authors Sverker Lindblad
Annika Bergviken Rensfeldt
Bente Jensen
Jan O. Jonsson
Trine Myrvold
Sven Persson
ISBN 978-82-12-02644-5
Publisher Norges Forskningsråd
Place of publication Oslo
Publication year 2013
Published at Department of Education, Communication and Learning
Department of Education and Special Education
Centre for European Research (CERGU)
Language sv
Links www.forskningsradet.no/servlet/Sate...
Keywords Forskningsstrategisk satsning, utbildningsvetenskap, Forskningsrådsanalys
Subject categories Educational Sciences, Pedagogical Work

Abstract

In May 2012 The Research Council of Norway (RCN) created a Nordic research panel for evaluating three research programs in Educational Research, together embracing 690 million NOK in resources;  PRAKSISFOU: Praxis directed Research and Development for early childhood education, comprehensive education and teacher education. (Final evaluation)  UTDANNING2020: Norwegian Educational Research towards 2020. (Half-way evaluation)  PRAKUT: Praxis directed Educational Research. (Initial evaluation related to experiencesfrom PRAKSISFOU and considering benefits in cooperation with UTDANNING2020) The research panel took a formative stance in the evaluation starting from program theories – that is constellations of goals, instruments used and expected results and outcomes. Themes for evaluation were; scientific qualities, relevance qualities, social and intellectual organisation – including crossdisciplinarity, internationalization, and forms of knowledge. The panel analysed policy documents and background materials, reports and publications. To this was added interviews, conversations and surveys to actors and participants (in sum almost one hundred persons). The following general conclusions were put forwards: Given the large amount of resources PRAKSISFOU and UTDANNING2020 it is reasonable that the programs will contribute to strengthening research of relevance for policy-making and for the teaching professions. Furthermore, the programs were having an impact in increased research competences in teacher education and in the number of disciplines engaging in educational research. However, to these general conclusions were added a set of comments: First, the panel found significant differences between PRAKSISFOU and UTDANNING2020 over the themes, partly consistent to their respective program theories. For instance, PRAKSISFOU was of a rather low scientific quality, measured by articles in international scientific journals, while UTDANNING2020 was more promising in this respect. Second, within both programs there were large differences over the themes presented above and the activities in the programs were partly overlapping. Third, productivity in terms of international high-quality publication and co-publication was not very high so far. Forthly, the instruments used for realization of the programs should be improved according to the panel, for instance more valid indicators in relation to the goals, or more precise ways in engaging in researcher-user cooperation. Fifthly, there was a tendency to manage the programs in a too undifferentiated way, neglecting that ”one size does not fit all” in different kinds of educational research and development. In addition, directives by The Ministry of Education and Research were sometimes too detailed to be productive for research. The support from the RCN and the program boards were highly appreciated by the participants. Considering recommendations it was concluded by the panel: UTDANNING2020 should clarify the current state of knowledge in the program and develop actions necessary to further strengthen scientific quality, knowledge organisation and internationalisation. Similar actions are necessary for PRAKUT, based on the experiences from PRAKSISFOU. This should be done in cooperation with The Norwegian Knowledge Centre for Education. Such a knowledge clarification and organisation is necessary in order to recognize and evaluate the actual significance of knowledge production and research relevance in the programs. Finally, PRAKUT and UTDANNING2020 should cooperate and eventually merge, for reasons in terms of knowledge organisation as well as in resource efficiency. However, it is necessary to differentiate between strivings for new knowledge on one side and strivings for innovation on the other side. These are different kinds of tasks, and should consequently be using different kinds of critieria in order to identify progress in education and research. Such a differentiation would in turn improve communication considering education, research and innovation.

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