How does matter matter in technology education?


  • Annica Gullberg KTH Royal Institute of Technology
  • Kristina Andersson KTH Royal Institute of Technology
  • Jenny Ivarsson KTH Royal Institute of Technology
  • Henni Söderberg KTH Royal Institute of Technology


Agential realism, Emotions, Practical activities, Technology Education


Practical activities are at the core of learning in technology. Therefore, such activities are included as an important and established part of education and curricula. From practical work during education, students are expected to develop their understanding of technology’s material codes. Entities, from simple equipment to advanced instruments, require knowledge of when, why and for what they can and should be used. Students are required to learn the practical craft of how to handle equipment and different materials. Emotional outcomes from practical activities may be feelings of success and satisfaction, or disappointment, lingering worries and nervousness. Such feelings may be crucial for a student’s decision to start, or continue, her/his science/technology studies.

This project explores how practical activities shape learning processes in two different experimental setups within technology education. The purpose is to examine how students’ and teachers’ emotional embodiment of scientific/technology practices, through entangled intra-actions with each other and matter/material, influence both teaching and learning. We draw on Barad’s theory of agential realism (Barad 2007) and Sara Ahmed’s ‘Cultural Politics of Emotion’ (Ahmed 2012). Three methods of data collection will be employed: observations, micro interviews, and interviews.

The research questions are: how can student-teacher-material-emotions intra-actions be understood, and what context-specific views of practical skills are expressed, and how?

In the presentation we discuss the theoretical framework, methods, and early outcomes from a pilot study.

Additional Files



How to Cite

Gullberg, A., Andersson, K., Ivarsson, J., & Söderberg, H. (2023). How does matter matter in technology education?. The 40th International Pupils’ Attitudes Towards Technology Conference Proceedings 2023, 1(October). Retrieved from