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Investigating quality in classrooms interactions

"Interact" aims to investigate whether video-based dialogue can support teachers' classrooms interactions – in order to increase students' engagement and learning.

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Schools fundamentally rise or fall based on the success of what occurs within their classrooms. Student engagement is a key contributor to school success, yet upper secondary students consistently and increasingly describe themselves as disengaged and bored. Boredom is an important factor associated with intentions to quit. At the same time there are lack of teachers, many teachers are exhausted and perceive work overload regardless of the covid-19 pandemic. Can interventions in schools solve both problems? The Interact study aims at answering this question.  

The Interact study will investigate how online video-based dialog can support teacher work on supportive classroom interaction that may increase student engagement and learning. The dialogs between individual and an expert on classroom interactions will focus on teachers support students’ academic learning and support the implementation of key aspects in the new Norwegian curriculum such as problem solving, metacognition and deeper content understanding. At the same time the dialogs will focus on interactions that support teachers’ emotional support and classroom organization. 

The intervention is piloted in lower and in upper secondary school. Based on the results of the two pilot studies, we will revise the Interact intervention with teachers, experts, and school leaders.  

Interact will be evaluated in a randomized controlled trial (RCT), with at least 100 teachers and the classes they are teaching (n = 2,000 students, aged 16–19) in which teachers in treated classrooms (50) will participate in INTERACT the 2022–2023 school year and additional booster sessions in the 2023–2024 school year. Teachers assigned to the control condition (50) will serve as a business as usual comparison group. They will participate in Interact in the 2024-2025 school year. 

UiS Synapse Lab develops and investigates interventions for promoting motivation and learning in education and work life. The fields of the most active researchers in the Lab are education, economics of education, labor economics, psychology and public health. In most of our research projects, we work across disciplines.