International Journal of Technology and Design Education

, Volume 13, Issue 3, pp 223-241

First online:

Designing the Best: A Review of Effective Teaching and Learning of Design and Technology

  • Valerie WilsonAffiliated withScottish Council for Research in Education Centre, Glasgow University
  • , Marlene HarrisAffiliated withScottish Council for Research in Education Centre, Glasgow University

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The role of Design and Technology (D & T) in schools in England is changing. As from September 2002, D & T will no longer be compulsory from age 14, but students will have a statutory entitlement to opt to study the subject. These proposed changes have renewed policy-makers' interest in a subject, which was first introduced into the National Curriculum in England and Wales in 1990. It provides the immediate context for a review of the literature published in English on Design and Technology commissioned by the Department of Education and Skills. Four databases were searched: the British Education Index (BEI), Educational Resources Information Centre (ERIC), PsychInfo, and Current Educational Research in the UK (CERUK). This article draws from the findings of the review and focuses in particular on two questions: How can D & T be delivered effectively and what enhances learning and teaching in D & T? The reviewers conclude that the factors which enhance effective learning and teaching of D & T include: adequate equipment and accommodation, appropriate curriculum content and teaching methods, up-to-date continuing professional development for teaching and management support to allow teachers to implement innovative practices. In addition, they suggest a research agenda, which could inform future research in D & T.

D & T effective teaching and learning England schools