Professional Learning for Chemistry Teachers Short Course

Edinburgh Napier University have launched a new CPD short course for Chemistry Teachers in Scotland. The course, starting in September, will develop pedagogical content knowledge and improve confidence of teachers to deliver high quality learning experiences.

CPD has a positive impact

The Scottish Government’s Science Technology Engineering Mathematics: Education and Training Strategy for Scotland aims for increased practitioner engagement in STEM professional learning opportunities”, and the Education Endowment Foundation have linked high-quality teaching to closing the poverty related attainment gap. Research has shown that effective professional learning has a positive impact on teacher retention. It is clear from these findings that high-quality subject-specific CPD has a positive impact in a number of key areas.

The idea for this course arose from the Planned in Scotland for Scottish Teachers series of events organised in partnership between Edinburgh Napier University and the Royal Society of Chemistry. The engagement with and feedback from these sessions confirmed a real appetite for subject-specific professional learning with the chemistry teaching community in Scotland.

Developing chemistry teachers professional knowledge

The course will provide a series of CPD sessions for chemistry teachers in Scotland, targeted at developing their pedagogical content knowledge. The overall aim of the CPD is to improve the confidence of teachers in delivering high-quality learning experiences, help close the poverty-related attainment gap, and improve teacher retention.

The course will develop chemistry teachers’ professional knowledge and understanding in the following areas: cognitive load theory; questioning; feedback; effective use of practical work; chemistry-specific literacy; chemistry-specific numeracy; explanations; formative assessment; self-evaluation of teaching.

Successful completion of the course will be displayed by:

  • Increased professional knowledge and understanding of how to support learning in the chemistry classroom
  • Reflecting on current practice and on the impact of the learning from the sessions

Register for the course

This course will be of benefit to chemistry teachers at all stages of their careers. Those at the beginning of their career will improve their subject-specific pedagogy, while those with more experience will have the opportunity to explore and refine their current practice.

The course will be delivered via seven, one hour online sessions, with attendees reflecting on and sharing their learning with their peers via a Padlet.

The short course starts in September 2022 and costs £50.

Register for the Professional Learning for Chemistry Teachers short course.

3PO: Understanding online risks to protect police officers and their families

A new £3.4 million research project, 3PO, will explore the unique challenges faced by police officers and their families online, and offer solutions for greater privacy, protection, and a safer online experience for six UK police services.

The project has been funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) through the Strategic Priority Fund as part of the Protecting Citizens Online programme.

Understanding the unique challenges faced by police officers

The internet is a huge part of our daily lives, but for many public-facing professionals, being online can be a high-risk activity. Policing professionals working in the public eye face a unique set of challenges, from assault and harassment to being the targets of threats from terrorist groups and serious organised crime. These risks can also extend to their family members who sometimes receive direct threats or have safeguarding and privacy fears.

3PO will seek to build a detailed understanding of the specific risks faced by policing professionals and their families. Once these are fully understood the project aims to provide technologies and solutions that will empower police officers and their families to participate in online life in a more private and secure way.

While the focus of the research is very much on the police and their dependents, it has been designed to ensure that solutions are transferable to other public-facing professions and members of the public like teachers, politicians, journalists, and advocates who are also exposed in a similar way.

Edinburgh Napier key part of highly experienced team

Researchers at Edinburgh Napier University will form part of a highly experienced research team, collaborating with four other universities (Sheffield Hallam, Oxford, Cambridge Universities and University College London), six UK police forces, the Home Office, and the Scottish Institute for Policing Research (SIPR).   

Joining the research team from Edinburgh Napier are Dr Liz Aston, Associate Professor of Criminology and Director of the Scottish Institute for Policing Research (SIPR), and Dr Shane Horgan, lecturer in Criminology and programme leader for BSc Policing and Criminology and Monica Boyle, SIPR Knowledge Exchange and Business Manager.

When speaking of the fieldwork involved in the project, Dr Shane Horgan said: “Policing is a diverse occupation, with many roles that look often nothing like each other. Different roles involve exposure to different types of risks. I will be looking at how information about privacy and security is communicated to a variety of units within police organisations, allowing us to build up a picture of where these supports work best to build on good practice. Equally, it will allow us to identify where they can be refined and improved to support different roles more effectively.   

“When we have developed tailored materials based on data generated by the project, I will lead another phase of fieldwork to explore how our materials work for these different groups, and most importantly where they don’t work. This will allow us to further refine the outputs for our stakeholders, but also develop a uniquely detailed picture of the diverse security and privacy challenges different policing roles face.”  

Dr Liz Aston said: “We are delighted that Edinburgh Napier University and the Scottish Institute for Policing Research are leading the dissemination work package for the 3PO project, which seeks to understand the risks and mitigate the online harms that public-facing professionals and their dependents face. We are looking forward to working with a range of partners to deliver this exciting project, which will have important implications for the protection of citizens from online harms.”