This Keynote Address could perhaps have been titled:
“What kind of research is appropriate to the study of education through Design and Technology?”
“What should be the priorities of an International Design and Technology Educational Research and Curriculum Development Conference?”
Strictly speaking, I should be better able to answer such questions at the end of this Conference rather than at the beginning. Nevertheless, there is value in setting out principles in advance of the event. Over the next two and a half days, I am hoping that we will all hear answers, or tentative answers, to questions about Education and Design and Technology posed at all levels of generality and particularity. In order for each of us to put such contributions into context, it may be useful to remind ourselves where we have got, so far, in our understanding of the four key ideas in the title of the conference, that is: Design, Technology, Educational Research and Curriculum Development. In particular, we need to remember how the meanings of these terms are qualified when they are used in combination. This will help us to appreciate the continuing development of Design and Technology, not only as a curriculum subject, with an extensive body of practical knowledge to be taught and examined within specific timetable slots, but also as an educational discipline with theoretical underpinnings having implications for the whole curriculum.