Editorial: Technology teachers and their professional competence - peculiarities and starting points for subject-specific didactical research


  • Bernd Zinn Universität Stuttgart, Institut für Erziehungswissenschaft (IfE), Lehrstuhl für Berufspädagogik mit Schwerpunkt Technikdidaktik (BPT)




It goes without saying that teacher competence is an influential factor in pupil education and learning. The importance of professional competence in teachers has increased and become more generally recognised in recent years (cf. for example Baumert et al. 2010; Kunter et al. 2013). Professional knowledge, i.e. subject-specific, didactic, pedagogic and psychological knowledge, is a core area of every teacher’s professional competence. Several studies have shown that the professional knowledge of teachers plays a critical role in the quality of their instruction and the learning success of their pupils (Lipowsky et al. 2009; Voss, Kunter & Baumert 2011; Voss et al. 2014; Wagner et al. 2016). Despite existing research deficits, the current standing of international research leaves no doubt as to the importance of the teacher's professional competence for the learner's development (e.g. Zlatkin-Troitschanskaia et al. 2009; Terhart, Bennewitz & Rothland 2014; KMK 2014). This competence is therefore also significant in economic terms.
While a substantial body of knowledge exists as to the professional competence of teachers of various school subjects such as mathematics and physics (cf. for example Tatto et al. 2012; Riese et al. 2015), research findings on teachers of technology and interdisciplinary subjects such as natural sciences and technology (NST) are still comparatively few and far between. After outlining the theoretical background, this editorial article will discuss selected peculiarities and possible approaches to research into the professional competence of technology and NST teachers at comprehensive schools, focusing primarily on upper secondary level.