Faculty of Education

Faculty of Education
Faculty of Education

Faculty and Graduate Students receive Insight Development Grants and SSHRC Funding

The excellent work of researchers and students at the Faculty of Education was on full display at the Talent and Insight Development Grant Ministerial announcement Wednesday, January 30, 2019 by the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Sport, and Dr. Ted Hewitt, President of SSHRC at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre.

The Faculty of Education was honoured to receive Insight Development Grants for Drs. Jamie Pyper and Lee Airton. Four graduate students in Education also received SSHRC funding:  Trevor Strong, Rebecca Stroud Stasel, Michael Pitblado, and Eleftherios (Terry) Soleas. Dr. Lee Airton also spoke about their research at the announcement. 

Faculty of Education Insight Development Grants - 2018

Lee Airton talking at funding announcement; photo by Bernard ClarkDr. Lee Airton - Gender expression under construction: How school boards are shaping Ontario's newest human rights category

Along with their colleague Dr. Kyle Kirkup at the University of Ottawa, Dr. Lee Airton received a SSHRC Insight Development Grant to study how Ontario’s 76 school boards are interpreting and, more importantly, shaping the new human rights concept of ‘gender expression.’

While the phenomenon of gender expression is well-documented in research, it’s a new legal construct. Schools across Canada now have to ask themselves: are we providing an environment free from discrimination on the grounds of gender identity and gender expression? The gender identity piece seems simple: make sure that no one is prevented from accessing gendered facilities and programs that match their gender identity. But the gender expression piece is more complicated. What does it mean to discriminate on these grounds? That a school can’t look the other way when a student is addressed with the wrong pronoun or name? Do gender expression protections secure everyone’s right to express gender in their own way – whether masculinity, femininity, both or neither - or are they only for transgender people? This research tries to answer practical questions like these from people in K-12 schools.

Chris De Luca, Terry Soleas, Rebecca Stroud Stasel, Jamie Pyper & Lee Airton at the SSHRC funding announcementDr. Jamie Pyper - "You can’t teach an old dog new tricks”: Investigating a new learning model for secondary school preservice mathematics teacher preparation

Dr. Pyper’s research considers four influences on the improvement of teaching and learning in secondary school mathematics:

  1. the intellectual (mathematical) and social diversity of secondary school mathematics preservice teachers
  2. the diversity of secondary school students’ interests and abilities
  3. the socio-global expectations of being a 21st century learner
  4. the sheer magnitude of mathematics to be learned.

These and many other related problems co-exist within preservice teacher’s professional learning. A different learning model, one integrally and authentically connected to mathematics problem solving and the problem solving involved in teachers’ daily professional practice is needed. Problem-based learning (PBL) is inherently professional-practice that focuses on authentic evidence-based problem solving, collaboration, and developing life-long learning skills. PBL offers an alternative to preservice learning that meets many, if not most, preservice teacher learning needs, and promotes the principles of quality learning and teaching of mathematics. Research examining PBL in the secondary school mathematics preservice context will not only inform future program development in Canada and globally but will also enhance our understanding of how teachers’ professional learning can be supported and improved.

CGS and SSHRC Doctoral Fellowships were also announced at Wednesday’s event. Four of our graduate students received 2018 CGS and SSHRC Doctoral Scholarships: Trevor Strong recipient of the CGS Doctoral Scholarship, Rebecca Stroud Stasel recipient of the CGS Doctoral Fellowship, Michael Pitblado recipient of the SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship, and Eleftherios (Terry) Soleas recipient of the SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship. Read more about their research.