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Dr. Oliver Mc Garr


Dr Oliver McGarr is a senior lecturer in the school of education with research and teaching interests in the areas of Educational Technology, Reflective Practice and STEM Education. He is the former head of the School of Education and a former course director of the Masters in ICT in Education and the Postgraduate Diploma in Education (Technology). He is also a former recipient of the University's Excellence in Teaching award and has published a number of studies in relation to his teaching work. Before joining the University he taught as a post-primary teacher of technology. Notable funded studies include the OECD/CERI study on ICT and school Innovation (2001), Curriculum change and ICT funded by the NCCA (2002), the use of Parametric CAD in Technology Education in Schools (2005) funded by the NCTE and NCCA and an international review of Computer Science (2017) which led to the introduction of Computer Science as a post-primary subject in Ireland. Related to this initiative he also chaired the national development group which developed the subject specification for the new Computer Science subject and is currently involved in research studies exploring its roll-out. His publications have mainly focused on STEM education in Schools, the adoption of ICT in schools and reflective practice and teachers' thinking. Along with Norwegian, Spanish and Maltese colleagues, he is currently involved in an ERASMUS+ project exploring digital competence in teacher education.

Research Interests

My research interests include:

  • The use of ICT and Educational Technologies in primary and post-primary schools

  • STEM Education 

  • Reflective practice in initial and continuing professional development in Teacher Education

  • Discourse analysis 

Professional Activities


  • 2012 Open University - Postgraduate Diploma
  • 2004 University of Limerick - Ph.D.
  • 1999 University of Limerick - Master of Arts (Education)
  • 1998 University of Limerick - Bachelor of Technology (Education) First class honours


Book Chapter


ICT and School Improvement: The OECD/CERI Study Revisited
Gleeson, J., Johnston, K. and McGarr, O.
Shaping the future - How Technology Can Lead to Educational Transformation


Digital divide in post-primary schools
Marcus-Quinn, A., McGarr, O.
Internet in the humanities: an insight from Ireland


OERs and Repositories
Marcus-Quinn, A
Emerging Issues III: From Capacity Building to Sustainability


Technology as a discipline: A case study
McGarr, O.
Global Perspectives: Introducing student teachers to development education


ICT in the English classroom
McGarr, O; Marcus-Quinn, A
Quality Issues in ICT Integration in Third Level Disciplines and Learning Contexts


IT Across the Curriculum in Irish Post-primary schools
McGarr, O
Education and the information age

Conference Contribution

Conference Publication


ESAI Annual Meeting ‘Education as a Public Good’
McGarr, O., McCormack, O. & Comerford, J.


EDULEARN16: 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
McGarr, O,Gavaldon, G,Chova, LG,Martinez, AL,Torres, IC


INTED2015: 9TH International Technology, Education and Development Conference
McGarr, O,McDonagh, A,Chova, LG,Martinez, AL,Torres, IC


ECER 2015, Education and Transition
Crowe, F. & McGarr, O.


European Science Education Research Association (ESERA)
Dermot Francis Donnelly, John O'Reilly, Oliver McGarr


McGarr, O and Marcus-Quinn, A


McGarr, O and Marcus-Quinn, A.


Educational Studies Association of Ireland annual conference
O'Doherty, T., Gleeson, J., Moody, J., McGarr, O. & Johnston, K.


European Distance Education Network 2000
McGarr, O., O¿ Brien, J.

Other Publication

Peer Reviewed Journal


Difficulty and self-efficacy: An exploratory study
Power J.;Lynch R.;McGarr O.
British Journal Of Educational Technology DOI: 10.1111/bjet.12755


Exploring students' justifications for studying a master's degree in business through problem-based learning
O'Brien R.; McGarr O.; Lynch R.
Innovations In Education And Teaching International DOI: 10.1080/14703297.2020.1752280


An investigation of university students and professionals’ Professional STEM Identity Status
Kelly, R., McGarr, O., Leahy, K., & Goos, M.
Journal Of Science Education And Technology


STEM and gender at university: focusing on Irish undergraduate female students' perceptions
Kelly R.;McGarr O.;Lehane L.;Erduran S.
Journal Of Applied Research In Higher Education DOI: 10.1108/JARHE-07-2018-0127


Problematizing Spatial Literacy within the School Curriculum
Lane, D., Lynch, R., McGarr, O.
International Journal Of Technology And Design Education DOI:


Illusions of specificity in power-laden clinical performance assessment
O'Connor, A,McCurtin, A,Cantillon, P,McGarr, O
Medical teacher DOI: 10.1080/0142159X.2017.1340637


Flexibility in higher education: an Irish perspective
Flannery, M,McGarr, O
Irish Educational Studies DOI: 10.1080/03323315.2014.978658


Parametric Pedagogy: Integrating parametric CAD in Irish post-primary schools
McGarr, O. and Seery, N.
Design And Technology Education: An International Journal


A framework for teachers' integration of ICT into their classroom practice
Donnelly, D; McGarr, O; O'Reilly, J
Computers & Education


A review of podcasting in higher education: Its influence on the traditional lecture
McGarr, O
Australasian Journal Of Educational Technology

Published Report


Digital Competence in Teacher Education
McGarr, O. & McDonagh, A.


Report on the Provision of Courses in Computer Science in Upper Second Level Education Internationally
Keane, N., McInerney, C., Exton, C, McGarr, O. , Erduran, S., O'Connor, R, Ryan, K., Tiziana, M.


Computers and Curriculum - difficulties and Dichotomies.
O'Doherty, T; Gleeson, J; Moody, J; Johnston, J; McGarr, O


ICT and School improvement, Irish Case Studies OECD/CERI ICT PROGRAMME
Glesson, J; O'Grady, D; McGarr, O; Johnston, J


Executive Summary for Ireland - ICT and School Improvement Report
Gleeson, J; O'Grady, D; McGarr, O; Johnston, K