Suzanne Gatt

Suzanne Gatt
University of Malta · Department of Early Childhood and Primary Education

PhD

About

80
Publications
64,061
Reads
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489
Citations
Citations since 2016
14 Research Items
291 Citations
2016201720182019202020212022010203040
2016201720182019202020212022010203040
2016201720182019202020212022010203040
2016201720182019202020212022010203040
Additional affiliations
November 2011 - March 2016
University of Malta
Position
  • Associate Professor, Head of Department, Early Childhood and Primary Education
September 1995 - present
University of Malta
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
January 1995 - November 2015
University of Malta
Position
  • Professor (Associate)

Publications

Publications (80)
Article
Objective While it is widely acknowledged that the COVID-19 pandemic has created disruptions in children’s learning trajectories, the literature suggests that there is little empirical research to support this claim. Method This rapid review of the literature was carried out to explore the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on children’s learning, wh...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic forced a rapid transition from onsite to online learning spaces for initial teacher education (ITE); with Universities adopting new modes of pedagogy and assessment. This study explores: (1) how Maltese ITE undergraduate early years and postgraduate primary education students dealt with remote forms of learning during the earl...
Article
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The world is currently experiencing the unimaginable impact of a pandemic. From one day to the other, academics at the University of Malta were forced to shift to working remotely as the COVID-19 pandemic hit the Maltese islands. This paper uncovers the lived shared experiences of eight female academics (authors of this paper) who, despite the perc...
Chapter
Malta did not suffer the 2009 economic crisis like other EU Member States. Youth unemployment remained low, and the country was among the first registering economic growth. However, Malta still has a very high percentage of early school leavers and is experiencing a significant skills gap in its labour market. In addition, a Cedefop study forecaste...
Book
Full-text available
This publication brings together the work of the project partners of the ERASMUS+ Project TEST. It provides a theoretical background to what inquiry-based learning in science means, as well as provides in-depth discussion of its implications to classroom practice. It tackles practical issues such as language use, how to introduce problems, managing...
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Europe considers Inquiry-based learning as one of the most effective pedagogies to teach science at primary level. Inquiry is particular as it views learners as actively engaged: emotionally, cognitively and socially as they carry out investigations to answer question which they set. Primary schools wanting to reform the way that science is taught...
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Inquiry-based learning in science has changed the way children learn science and engage with scientific phenomena. In inquiry children explore scientific concepts and learn through questioning, gathering evidence and review. This study extends inquiry in science to homework. Children aged 9/10 in their fifth year of primary were assigned three inqu...
Chapter
Learning mobility, social inclusion and non-formal education: access, processes and outcomes
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This chapter describes and analyses effects experienced by Maltese dyslexic youth participating in a youth exchange with Italian dyslexic youth. The aim was to provide a platform to share school experiences and inform professionals and the public about frustrations experienced due to lack of understanding and insensitivity to dyslexic youth’s needs...
Article
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Este artículo examina los modelos cognitivos para el aprendizaje escolar entre iguales y sus implicaciones para la enseñanza de las ciencias naturales en las escuelas de Educación Primaria. El artículo es producto del proyecto Sócrates Comenius 2.1 ‘La Implementación del Pensamiento Científico en el Entorno de las Escuelas Primarias’ (STIPPS, por s...
Article
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This article is the editorial of Issue 13 of the Journal of Emergent Science. The Journal and Open Access and the papers referred to can be downloaded from the Journal's website https://www.ase.org.uk/journals/journal-of...science/.../13/jes-13-summer-2017.pdf
Book
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This document is a review of impact of policies in employment and health on reducing poverty and social cohesion in Malta. This report was commissioned by the European Commission and can be accessed at ec.europa.eu/social/BlobServlet?docId=17942&lan
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EQAVET, the quality assurance tool in vocational and educational training, was developed in response to the need for a supply of a trained workforce for labour market needs. Implementation of EQAVET at national level, however, remains a challenge. The research reported here focused on the implementation of QA processes by VET providers in 4 countri...
Chapter
Full-text available
This paper presents the work done by FP7 project Pri-Sci-Net (grant no. 266647) and which aims to promote the uptake of inquiry-based learning approaches at primary level across Europe with children aged 3–11 years. The main project outcomes include developing a shared understanding of inquiry-based learning when relating to young children, helping...
Article
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There has been, for the past few years, a drive to implement inquiry-based learning as the main pedagogy to teach science at both primary and secondary level (Rocard et al., 2007). This approach has been advocated as a response to a European concern about economic decline, underachieve-ment by students in international studies for science and mathe...
Book
Full-text available
This document is a compilation of 15 out of 45 IBSE activities which have been developed within the Pri-Sci-Net project for the free use by teachers across Europe. They are designed specifically for primary teachers and can be implemented with children in the age-range of 6-8 years. The activities are designed mainly to provide inspiration for inqu...
Book
Full-text available
This document is a compilation of 15 out of 45 IBSE activities which have been developed within the Pri-Sci-Net project for the free use by teachers across Europe. They are designed specifically for primary teachers and can be implemented with children in the age-range of 9-11 years. The activities are designed mainly to provide inspiration for inq...
Book
Full-text available
This document is a compilation of 15 (from 45) IBSE activities which have been developed within the Pri-Sci-Net project for the free use by teachers across Europe. They are designed specifically for primary teachers and can be implemented with children in the age-range of 3-5 years. The activities are designed mainly to provide inspiration for inqu...
Article
Full-text available
One of the challenges of Science Education in the 21 st century is that of engaging learners in meaningful learning. Learning science from books does not equip them with the skills and competences necessary to become scientists. The European Commission [1] has recognized this challenge and advocated inquiry-based learning as the main pedagogy to be...
Article
Full-text available
This paper combines 4 presentations making up a symposium. Inquiry-based learning in science has been advocated by the European Commission at both primary and secondary level of education (Rocard et al, 2007) However, changes in science pedagogy across Europe has proved to be a challenge. In addition cultural and linguistic contexts of learning and...
Book
Full-text available
This publication is intended as an update of the research paper ‘The Impact of the Bologna Process on Higher Education Institutions in Malta: An overview of the targets achieved and future challenges’ which was published by the National Bologna experts group in 2011. The original research paper served to assess the impact that the Bologna Process h...
Chapter
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The chapter describes one aspect of the work done as part of the Leonardo project EQAVET coordinated by the National Commission for Further and Higher Education in Malta. EQAVET is one of the National projects focusing on quality assurance funded under the Lifelong Learning project. The aim of the project was to adapt EQAVET indicators to the Malte...
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The global financial crisis across Europe has created great societal demands. Social inclusion has become one of the main challenges of the millennium with those hit hardest being the most vulnerable people. It is at such times that it becomes crucial to provide positive welfare. This article presents research results from a transnational study, IN...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper combines 4 presentations making up a symposium. Inquiry-based learning in science has been advocated by the European Commission at both primary and secondary level of education (Rocard et al, 2007) However, changes in science pedagogy across Europe has proved to be a challenge. In addition cultural and linguistic contexts of learning and...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Science education for the general student currently aims to enable all students to engage with and acting upon personal, social and global issues which have a scientific/technological aspect. It is generally agreed that this engagement involves the acquisition of certain subject, personal and social attributes. An effort is being made by science ed...
Article
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In 2007, the Rocard report highlighted concerns with the type of science education presented in European classrooms [1]. Despite research on consrtructivism research teaching science remained mainly through a 'transmission approach' whereby the teacher passed on all the scientific knowledge that students had to then assimilate [2]. The result was a...
Chapter
The challenge of educating future generations is becoming more difficult, particularly when resources are scarce and funding is being cut. Complexities such as cultural and socio-economic background, parenting and social integration require that schools collaborate with other organizations within the community to ensure better social cohesion as we...
Chapter
European society is today more complex (Outhwiate, 2008) with an increased diversity of cultures, languages and religions present as a result of, among other aspects, mobility and immigration (Popkewitz & Lindblad, 2000). Together with the present financial crisis and with limited government investment, educating children for an uncertain future be...
Book
Full-text available
Malta is a small country with only about 450,000 inhabitants. The yearly cohort of births is about 3800-4000. Compulsory education in Malta ranges from age 5 years. However, children can start pre-school, known as kindergarten, at the age of 3. Two years of kindergarten exist before compulsory schooling. The majority of children attend pre-school,...
Article
Full-text available
The socio-cultural context shapes learning and development. Thus, schools cannot ignore neither the transformations shaping their surrounding societies, but be an active part of them, nor what those transformations mean for school learning. In this regard, technology has changed the way we think and learn, and learning has been shown to be deeply l...
Article
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The global financial crisis, increase in migration from troubled zones and the resulting more diverse multicultural and multilingual social settings across Europe have led to greater societal demands. As countries combat financial deficits and cut public spending, support to those in need decreases. Social inclusion has become one of governments' c...
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Young children learn through informal ways and many teachers use games and stories as common teaching strategies. Young children find it easier to understand new concepts through contexts. Research has also shown how young children’s knowledge of animals and plants is limited (Gatt et al, 2007; 2008). This paper describes how a teaching methodology...
Book
Full-text available
This report is study on discrimination commissioned by the National Commission for Equality (NCPE) as part of the project Think Equal. The first report conducted focused on discrimination among youths and reports the results of a quantitative study carried out among youths. This study is a survey that measures the perception, level of awareness, un...
Article
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Schools alone cannot reverse the high rates of school failure in the poorest communities in Europe; they need the contributions of the entire community. Coordination between families, the larger community, and the school has proven crucial to enhance student learning and achievement, especially for minority and disadvantaged families. However, fami...
Article
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The scientific community has provided a wide range of evidence that family and community involvement in schools benefits not only students’ learning but also their surrounding community. The INCLUD‐ED project has conducted case studies of successful schools around Europe that have strong community participation. Some of them are engaged in the Lear...
Book
Full-text available
Malta is characterised by its small size, its climatological parameters and its long coastline. This sets the context for specific eco-innovation activities to be stimulated and developed not only for local use but also for international replication. Europe is going through difficult economic times which have had their knock on effect on most count...
Book
Full-text available
This publication provides an overview of the implementation of the Bologna Process in Malta from Malta date of signature in 1999 to 2009. It looks at the implementation of the different aspects of the process as well as highlights the challenges that Malta faces with respect to mobility and harmonisation in preparation to the European Higher Educat...
Article
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Mead’s approach of symbolic interactionism is useful for explaining both how students learn and how learning environments can be improved. This article reviews Mead’s theoretical contributions, which serve as a base for successful educational actions in several countries. The interactionist view of learning is examined in depth, as well as the dial...
Chapter
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This chapter focuses on the different forms of institutional support which exist within Universities for doctoral candidates and for doctoral graduates employed as staff. The need for researchers in the economy has also impacted Universities as they realise that more and more of their graduates will not remain in academia but will move to industry....
Article
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The education process of children has over time become the domain of educators, having taken more and more the responsibility off families and more so off the community. However, as society becomes more diverse and social cohesion essential to a knowledge base society, education professionals recognise that educating children has become such a comp...
Article
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Interactive groups is the form of classroom organisation that is having quite a success in Europe in terms of overcoming school failure and coexistence problems. The analysis carried out in the INCLuD-ED project identified that one of the keys to this success was the continuous replacement of power-related communicative acts, which are typical of t...
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Teachers are often confined to their classrooms with limited or no time to share with colleagues the difficulties they face, their concerns, and their successful initiatives. This leads to a situation where they end up teaching in ways and approaches they believe to be best with no chance to know how others may be approaching similar difficulties i...
Article
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2010 sees the end of the process of establishing the European Higher Education Area (EHEA). Although not all countries may have achieved all the objectives, many are those countries and universities who have implemented many of the targets set. Within the Bologna Process, there have been many developments such as: European Credit Transfer and Accum...
Book
Full-text available
This is a research commissioned by the Employment and Training Corporation (Malta) about the potential for employment of women returnees to work in Call Centres in Malta. The results show that Call Centres in Malta are evolving in highly technical areas which require either specific knowledge and/or knowledge in languages. On the other hand, women...
Article
Young Maltese children have experience and knowledge of animals. We explored the range of animal with which they are familiar and the origin of this knowledge. The children interviewed were in Pre School, aged 4 years, and in the first year of compulsory education, aged 5 years Verb 1 questions and photographs were used as the probe to access under...
Book
Full-text available
A Working Document drafted by Suzanne Gatt and kevin Gatt for the Malta Qualifications Council Frameworks for the validation of informal and non-formal learning in Malta Malta Qualifications Council .
Article
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This article examines cognitive models of peer learning in school and the implications that these models have for the teaching of science in primary schools. The article is a product of the European Commission, Socrates Comenius 2.1 funded project ‘The Implementation of Scientific Thinking in (Pre) Primary Schools Settings (STIPPS)’ project (www.st...
Book
Full-text available
This report is an evaluation of the outcomes of project REACH – ESF 57 funded under priority 2 – Developing people. The project is coordinated by AÇÇESS in collaboration with the Cottonera College, Employment and Training Corporation (ETC), SEDQA and APPOGG. REACH targets young people who are approaching school-leaving age, particularly those young...
Article
Full-text available
Fifty Maltese children, 25 in the second year of pre-school (4 years olds) and 25 in the first year of compulsory education (5 years old), were interviewed about their knowledge of plants. Analysis showed that they had a restricted understanding of the term, meaning something small, with a thin stalk, leaves and a flower. Trees, cacti and nettles w...
Book
Full-text available
A Working Document drafted by Suzanne Gatt and kevin Gatt for the Malta Qualifications Council Frameworks.,The series Valuing all Learning are working documents that reflect the discussions carried out within MQC and with key stakeholders and international consultants commissioned to critically review these documents. The first document entitled A...
Article
Full-text available
Informal and non-formal learning is gaining importance within the Lisbon Strategy in working towards achieving a knowledge society. The Bologna and Copenhagen processes and the European Qualifications Framework as an overarching framework are reviewed. The research findings of the FAIR Leonardo project are then considered to identify the different...
Article
Full-text available
The FAIR trade sector in Malta consists of the activity of a small cooperative – Koperattiva Kummerc Gust (KKG), mainly involved in running a shop ‘L-Arka’, selling from stalls, organising awareness raising activities as well as political lobbying at national and European level alongside other non-governmental organisations. The aim of such initiat...
Article
Full-text available
Informal and non-formal learning is gaining importance within the Lisbon Strategy in working towards achieving a knowledge society. The Bologna and Copenhagen processes and the European Qualifications Framework as an overarching framework are reviewed. The research findings of the FAIR Leonardo project are then considered to identify the different...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Scientific Research has social and moral implications that can no longer be disregarded. Education students in science involves more than understanding scientific knowledge and understanding investigations. If students are to grow to become tomorrow's responsible citizens, they need to understand scientific issues as well as their impact on society...
Conference Paper
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Statistics show that the percentage number of females in science courses at the University of Malta is low when compared to other undergraduate courses. The ratio of males to females varies according to the science undergraduate course. This paper aims to identify reasons for gender differences in science undergraduate courses, lecturing staff and...
Book
Full-text available
This publication is an effort at the Faculty of Education, University of Malta by 4th year Bachelor of Education students taking science as specialisation. This year one of the musicals that is organised each year by final year students was based on science and promoted science experiments as part of the Hands on Science Comenius 3 project No. 1101...
Book
Full-text available
Background The 1990s have seen the percentage of gainfully employed youths drop to a level of 49.6%. This drop must be seen in the context of the increasing number of young people pursuing post-secondary education complemented by the rise in the unemployment rate of young people. Youth unemployment in Malta has risen these past years. In view of th...
Chapter
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Newton’s Laws of Motion are abstract in nature as they involve a number of concepts that cannot be seen directly, such as forces and their point of action. However, they relate to everyday situations as these apply to objects and their motion. Many students come to class with already held views about what governs the movement of things, which are o...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
All secondary level students in Malta study, at least, one science subject (Physics, Chemistry and/or Biology) up to school-leaving level. This is due to a pass in one science subject being compulsory for entry into general post-secondary education. On the other hand, Physics, rather than Chemistry or Biology, is compulsory in State Schools. This e...
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This chapter presents the challenge of communication during teaching and learning and presents a theoretical background to consrtuctivism. An argument is put forward that students, in trying to undestand how the world works, form ideas and explanations which they bring with them to the classroom. Constructivism takes these children's ideas into con...
Chapter
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This chapter tackles how science at primary level can be taught using different strategies of constructivism. Children come to school and to the classroom with already existing ideas about how the world works. There is extensive literature which shows that children develop these ideas which are often different to the correct scientific understandin...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Most of the research carried out in the 1970’s and 1980’s (Driver et al, 1985, 1994) led to the realisation that students hold ideas other than the correct scientific conceptions. Educators focused on students’ ideas in a number of areas in Physics, ranging from optics (Goldberg & McDermott, 1986) electricity (Shipstone, 1984), heat (Erickson & Tib...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Research in Children’s Ideas in Science has shown young children to hold many ideas in science which differ from the correct scientific concepts. These ideas develop out of school and children come to the classroom with these already formed ideas. Teachers therefore need to take these ides into consideration when teaching science to young children....
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Science Educators have endorsed and advocated adopting a constructivist approach in science teaching for these past 25 years. This is indicated by the massive research published during this period about children's ideas and describing teaching schemes developed within a constructivist framework.. Yet, as the PISA results [14] highlight, students' p...
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Primary Science in Malta holds a secondary role, mainly due to teachers' lack of content knowledge and methodology background. This paper refers to an initiative by the science centre to help primary teachers develop the content and skills for teaching electric circuits. A box with four lesson plans and the necessary resources was prepared for year...
Article
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The research involves a teaching scheme designed to help students understand better Newton's Laws of Motion -in this case the third law. The methodology developed is built within a constructivist framework where students are believed to learn by being cognitively engaged in an activity. Active learning is brought about through the use of cognitive...

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Projects (6)
Project
The aim of this project is to study the impact of the pandemic on young children and their education.
Project
MRER December 2020 Special Issue: The Impact of COVID-19 on Teaching and Learning The swift spread of Covid-19 across the world has impacted many aspects of everyday life. Education is no exception, with education institutions in many countries closing their doors. Providing continuity in education provision in such times has become a great challenge. However, despite the constraints brought about by the uncertainty of these unprecedented times, there are also opportunities to innovate in how teaching and learning take place. MRER is calling on educational researchers to respond to this call for papers on the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on teaching and learning from a local and international perspective. It welcomes contributions related to the impact of Covide-19 on education at different levels: early childhood, primary, secondary, post-secondary, vocational, tertiary, and adult education. Papers can tackle issues related: to challenges faced; benefits and opportunities; policies and actions for online teaching; learning and assessment; sharing of good practice; impact on several key stakeholders including young and adult learners; and other educational aspects. learners Issue Editors This peer-reviewed MRER Special Issue is co-edited by Professor Suzanne Gatt, Dr Rosienne C Farrugia and Dr Charmaine Bonello from the Department of Early Childhood and Primary Education, Faculty of Education within the University of Malta. Submission of Paper Interested contributors are invited to send a proposed title and an abstract of not more than 500 words outlining a relevant theoretical or empirical research focus by not later than noon of Tuesday 30th June 2020. Full articles for this special edition should not exceed 7,000 words including references. First full drafts are to reach the editors as an attachment by not later than noon of Tuesday 1st September 2020. Authors are kindly asked to refer to the following link for guidelines on style and formating - http://www.mreronline.org/submission/. Following the peer review exercise, final revised articles are to be presented by the 1st November 2020. Submission of abstract and full articles are to be sent rosienne.c.farrugia@um.edu.mt by the stipulated deadlines.