Approaches to industrial processes in technology textbooks


  • Susanne Engström
  • Pernilla Sundqvist Mälardalens uiversitet
  • Charlotta Nordlöf
  • Claes Klasander


technology education, technical solutions, industrial processes, textbook analysis


The aim of this study is to explore how technology textbooks can provide students with a basis for expressing knowledge about technical solutions within industrial processes. The base and the delimitation for the study is the formulation of the specific content on industrial processes that must be taught to 13 to 15-year-olds in Swedish schools pursuant to the national syllabus. Textbooks constitute an important foundation for teaching, particularly in the subject of technology, in which teachers may find the breadth of content they are expected to teach challenging. The study analyses the sections concerning industrial processes in four different technology textbooks commonly used for students in the age group 13–15. Analysis involved interpreting content in the form of text, images, assignments etc. related to aspects that are expected to characterise students’ descriptions and explanations of technical solutions: understanding of technical solutions purpose and functionality, how components interact as a whole, similarities to other technical solutions and relating them to their own experiences. The results show that these aspects emerge in different ways depending on, among other things, how the area is presented. We found three different ways in which industrial processes are presented in the textbooks: A unique industrial process is described carefully and in detail, Sub-processes and methods are presented systematically and Industrial processes are described as technological systems at a general level. One interpretation is that, as a teacher, you can teach about industrial processes in these different ways and that which one you choose affects to what extent certain aspects of technical solutions are visualised for the students.

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How to Cite

Engström, S., Sundqvist, P., Nordlöf, C., & Klasander, C. (2023). Approaches to industrial processes in technology textbooks . The 40th International Pupils’ Attitudes Towards Technology Conference Proceedings 2023, 1(October). Retrieved from