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ISU Professors and Graduate Student Present at Ireland International Conference on Education

May 4, 2023

In April 2023, Dr. Cory A. Bennett, Professor of Mathematics Education and Chair of the Teaching and Educational Studies (TES) Department within the Idaho State University College of Education; Dr. Beverly Ray, TES Professor; and Mr. Michael “Mick” Morgan, ISU graduate student and fourth grade teacher from Jefferson Elementary School in the Pocatello/Chubbuck School District, presented their research findings during two separate presentations at the Ireland International Conference on Education

Held annually, IICE brings together academics, professionals, researchers, and teachers from across the world to advance their understanding and practices in various educational topics such as information literacy, emerging technologies, inclusive education and cross-disciplinary subjects in education. IICE prides itself on allowing participants to network on the national and international level, while also developing partnerships with the world’s top education decision makers across all sectors.

“There is still so much to be understood about teaching and learning and the ways in which people from other countries approach education provides a perspective we often do not get in the United States. It can be so eye-opening to learn about ideas, strategies, and other approaches and often this helps me better understand the nuanced ways I can help Idaho teachers advance their own understandings,” said Dr. Bennett. 

During IICE, Bennett and Morgan shared their presentation titled, “Creating Equitable Space for Discourse through Silent Discussions,” which centered on how to use a strategy called Chalk Talks to engage more students in mathematical discussions. Not all students like to engage or participate in open classroom discussions, for a variety of reasons, and this leads to inequitable structures that favor those students who are willing to publicly participate and speak out. Bennett and Morgan’s 4-year study sought to understand how to use different discourse structures to address this problem. Their study found that by using discourse structures that allow all students to contribute, wherein no one student can dominate the conversation, all students were able to increase their time for thinking, build on their classmates’ responses, and feel more connected to the larger learning community. 

Bennett and Ray also received IICE’s 2023 Best Paper Award for their paper titled, “Novice Teachers’ Perspectives on Implementing Gameful Learning Structures: The Need for Instructional Leadership.” Bennett and Ray co-authored this paper that focused on the use of Gameful learning, a learning design structure that emphasizes student choice and mastery-based learning. Findings from the research indicate there is a strong need to support early career teachers in their context as they no longer have the same support systems in place as when they were in college learning about teaching. Using more innovative and emerging approaches to designing learning, like using Gameful Learning, may be difficult for novice teachers to integrate into the classroom and thus the need for on-going collaborative partnerships with the school principals and academic coaches in the novice teacher’s context. 

To learn more about IICE, the IICE presentations, or the IICE awards, please visit: https://www.iicedu.org/iice-awards/


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