Academic journal article International Journal of Education and Development using Information and Communication Technology

Creation of Audiovisual Presentations as a Tool to Develop Key Competences in Secondary-School Students. A Case Study in Science Class

Academic journal article International Journal of Education and Development using Information and Communication Technology

Creation of Audiovisual Presentations as a Tool to Develop Key Competences in Secondary-School Students. A Case Study in Science Class

Article excerpt

INTRODUCTION

At the end of the twentieth century, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) proposed a system to evaluate students in their last years of secondary education. This system was a tool that verified the abilities and knowledge that the students had acquired necessary for integration and participation in modern society (PISA 2000). At first the tests were done in the areas of mathematics, reading and problem solving; however, it was soon seen that these tests should be extended to other fields, introducing a wider range of competences. In this way the project for Definition and Selection of competences was created, establishing the concept of key competence and its areas of applicability of the following years (DeSeCo 2005:4). According to the OEDC, a key competence is defined as:

A competency is more than just knowledge and skills. It involves the ability to meet complex demands, by drawing on and mobilizing psychosocial resources (including skills and attitudes) in a particular context

From an educational standpoint this was an important innovation, as its application to school curricula enabled a change from traditional, closed bodies of knowledge to a more crosscurricular perspective (Rouvrais et al. 2006).

Competences in Spain

Initially, the OECD defined nine key competences divided into three categories: Use tools interactively, Interact in heterogeneous groups and Act autonomously (DeSeCo 2005). Using these as the starting point, the European Union defined a series of key competences (EU 2006) that cover all areas of knowledge and were adopted by member states. The following table shows the correlation between European key competences and their adaptation in Spain, the latter under the name of basic competences (MEC 2006).

In Spain, the curricula developed incorporated competences in the case of mandatory education (BOE 2006a; BOE 2006b). They were also included in the university education reforms brought about by the European Higher Education Area (MEC 2003; Riesco 2008). There is however an intermediate stage spanning ages 16-18 called Bachillerato (the final two years of secondary school, non-mandatory, prior to university), in which the competences are not taken into account as an element of the curricula and instead are mentioned in passing, as in article 2 of RD (Spanish law) 1476/2007 (BOE 2007): "The finality of Bachillerato is to provide students with an educational grounding, intellectual and human maturity, knowledge and abilities that will allow them to develop social functions and to join adult society with responsibility and competence."

This means that the competences do not appear in the curricular development of the final two years of secondary school, at least explicitly. This seems incoherent, taking into account that the educational stages prior to and following the non-mandatory stage do have competence-based curricula. The objectives of Bachillerato pursue the best possible preparation of the student for their future navigation in society (BOE 2007), which appears to coincide with the objectives established for mandatory education; we consider, then, that it is viable to approach learning during Bachillerato using the same competences (UE 2006; González 2012).

In this sense, this study outlines a proposal of project-based learning, which looks for work on and improves of key competences by non-mandatory secondary students in scientifictechnological studies. We believe that it will be seen that the applied methodology is easily extendable to other areas of study.

Project-based Learning

Project-based learning consists of student-developed research on topics of interest to students; this research forms the core that the elements of the teaching-learning process are linked to. This means, as stated from the beginning of this learning, that the students must choose the topic and play the leading role in their own learning process (Katz & Chard 1989). …

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