Dr. Orla McCormack, Dr. Elaine Kinsella and Dr. Deirdre O Neill standing in front of a presentation of the OTTER Project
Thursday, 2 November 2023

Watch it back: Learning science outside the classroom for a sustainable future

Our first Knowledge with Impact lecture got underway on Thursday afternoon, November 2, with a fascinating presentation on the OTTER project, based on research carried out by Dr. Orla McCormack, Dr. Regina Kelly and Dr. Deirdre O’Neill of the School of Education.

Their lecture introduced OTTER, the pedagogical model employed within the project, the pilot approaches adopted by the three Ireland schools, as well as some tentative findings and related impacts. A comprehensive presentation followed by a Q&A session made for a very interesting lunchtime amongst colleagues.

During the presentation, Dr. McCormack introduced OTTER and how it aims to strengthen education outside-the-classroom (EOC) networks within Europe, connecting experts from four different regions within the continent (Finland, Hungary, Ireland and Spain). 

The EOC pilot approach shares a common theme focused on issues such as, plastic waste and recycling in order to build upon recent momentum in tackling global, educational, social, and environmental issues.

Dr. O’Neill discussed the field work that took place at Limerick based schools Scoil Íde (primary) and Coláiste Nano Nagle (secondary) as well as Clare based school St. Flannan’s College (secondary) who partnered with UL and OTTER to pilot EOC practices and investigate how they can integrate student learning outside the classroom with their current classroom practice and curricular needs.

The next lecture in our Knowledge with Impact series will take place in December. Keep an eye out for further details.