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  • Writer's pictureColin Keogh

Welcome to Research - Transition Year Work Placement

Updated: Jul 30, 2018

Transition Year Students joined the CoDesRes team for work placements as Research Assistants for two weeks; Jan 29th - 9th Feb. 2018

CoDesRes had four Transition Year (TY) students as Research Assistants over the course of the two weeks, working in the areas of interdisciplinary research, marine biology, community arts practice and of course, sustainable development through an engagement with the SDGs. We explained the CoDesRes project and how they would contribute both as Research Assistants, and the tasks we expected them to complete over the two-week placement.

As Research Assistants, their first task involved researching and analysing some of the existing resources on the SDGs. Each student was given a number of resources to review and a set of evaluation crieria to use; mainly to identify how well the goals were communicated both verbally and visually. They were then asked to explain in their own words what they had understood about the four goals we were working with as this would be the underpinning for other tasks throughout the placement.

Over the course of the two-week placement we also undertook a beach clean, researched local marine environments and their organisms, created information resources, a Pecha Kucha on the SDGs, visited and worked with a local organisation as well as exploring design thinking and making puppets using waste / recycled materials and developing costumes and ideas for embedding the SDGs in the upcoming St Patrick’s Day parade.

In general, our TY Research Assistants felt the goals were interesting and pretty good, but as we suspected, they’d never heard of them and wondered how many people had. Also, they felt that many of the resources out there didn’t speak to them; either being pitched at a younger or older audience. They found most of the resources online dull, with too much text that although they told you what the goals were, they didn’t really help make the connection of what could be done to help reach those goals. They enjoyed their two weeks and were fascinated to know that what we did over the week could be a job, beginning to see how specific disciplines could be brought together for learning and creating practical solutions.

The placements gave the new team an opportunity to work together and trial and iterate some STEAM place-based curriculum ideas, as well as encouraging the students to engage with the SDGs and help us to create more accessible tools and approaches. We can’t wait to do more work with Transition Year Students and the team will be trialling and developing a bespoke CoDesRes curriculum in Colaiste Na Sceilge from Sept 2018.

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