University of Ioannina, Greece
Thesis: Designing Science Educational Programs for Non-Formal Learning Environments in the light of the Activity Theory
Research supervisor: Katerina Plakitsi

I am writing to apply for the 8th ISCAR Summer University for PhD students in Moscow State University of Psychology and Education “Cultural-historical psychology: interdisciplinary research perspectives & social practices”, which will take place in Moscow on Monday 8th– Saturday 13th of July 2019.
My name is Athina – Christina Kornelaki and I am a pre-primary school teacher. I recently defended my PhD at the University of Ioannina in Greece but I am very eager to continue and expand my research. I participated to regional ISCAR International Conference 2016, which took place in Rethymno, Crete with two poster presentations entitled “The project EPOQUE – Environmental Portfolio for Quality in University Education” and “The project @MINDSET – Managing Social Relations in Schools”. I will also participate in the next regional ISCAR International Conference 2019 in Ioannina, Greece. The research group @fise group, in which I am a member, with Katerina Plakitsi, current president of ISCAR, as a leader, has undertaken the organization of the conference on behalf of South ISCAR Region. Hopefully, I will participate to ISCAR 2020 International Conference if I find the required funding.
The title of my PhD Thesis is “Designing Scientific Educational Programs for non-formal Learning Environments in the light of the Activity Theory” and it relates to applying CHAT in non-formal science education and on rethinking of scientific literacy as well as the role of informal institutions such as museums as strong social agents. It is thereby studied the influence of the community in the learning procedure and is introduced a new methodology of promoting science education through informal cultural institutions which don’t acquire an evident scientific profile such as the Archaeological Museum of Ioannina in which the research was applied. Moreover, it is part of the @FISE project of the University of Ioannina, which deals with Activity Theory in Formal and Informal Science Education.
I consider my participation in the Summer University that you organize of high priority, even though I completed my PhD as it will offer me the opportunity to cooperate with other researchers involved in the socio-cultural theories, as well as with professors who are experts in the field of socio-cultural theories. Furthermore, it would be a great challenge for me to present the way we make socio cultural approaches in the University of Ioannina, both in laboratory lessons in the Department of Pre-school Education and the Archaeological Museum in the city of Ioannina.
In addition, it is very important for the outcome of my post-doc research to participate in this Summer University, as it aims to discuss the connection between theory and various methodologies. The fruitful exchange of ideas with other researchers and professors will offer great support to my research as it will be a product of social interaction.
Therefore, I definitely believe that through the 8th ISCAR Summer University at Moscow State University of Psychology and Education, I will be able to improve both methodological and practical approaches for my research.