Jenny Sullivan Hellgren
I am currently writing a doctoral thesis in educational work about students' motivation for science learning. The focus of the thesis is students' perception of their science lessons and students' affective experiences in relation to their interaction with teachers, peers and the scientific content of the lessons. The main group of participants for the study are secondary school students taking part in a research project that involves working with and as researchers. The purpose of the thesis is to gain more knowledge about students' affective experiences and perceptions of their science lessons, and how this relates to students' motivation to learn science in both the short and the long term. The thesis grew out of a larger project studying interactions between students and their learning environment.
I am a qualified and licensed secondary school teacher in chemistry, biology and sustainable society. Over the years I have also taught younger children, adult learners (chemistry, biology and general science) and university students (plant physiology and cell biology), and gained experience of distance education.
My current research training complements my earlier research training in plant physiology (PhD SLU 2003) and allows me to link advanced subject knowledge with the school science classroom. My experiences of doctoral research training have given me an interest in the quality and nature of doctoral studies: I was a board member of SULF’s Doctoral Society at national level (2011-12), and am currently involved locally in questions related to doctoral training. My current primary area of research interest can be summarized as making STEM (science, technology, engineering & mathematics)-subjects more appealing and accessible to a larger group of students than it is today.
Specific research interests:
Students' motivation for science and mathematics in secondary school
How motivation can be studied in the classroom
Opportunities and challenges of distance teaching and learning
Students' perceptions and experiences of authentic learning situations