Types of projects: research projects and technology projects

It is difficult to classify the projects carried out by secondary school students by type. Simplifying this classification as much as possible, the projects can be divided into three areas: scientific research, technology, and combined.

If, in order to divide these areas further, we go into more detail, we are presented with various options and difficulties. To solve this problem, several classifications were created, especially for
professional research. However, these are not particularly useful for classifying the type of projects carried out in secondary schools (experimental, quasi-experimental, non-experimental, documentary, technological, exploratory, descriptive research, etc.).

Instead, it is more common to classify the subject or field in question when organising secondary school projects, although problems also arise in classifying combined projects and establishing criteria. For example, at the science fair organised by the European Commission, projects are divided into the following categories: biology, computer science, chemistry, earth sciences, engineering, environment, materials, mathematics, medicine, physics and social sciences.

Considering the aforementioned difficulties in establishing and providing a useful criterion, we propose two main project types based on the most commonly used methods: research projects and technology projects.

Read here the complete ebook STEAM project ideas to inspire young people 

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