Learning Ecologies in Higher Education

The Learning Ecologies project examines how students learn with networking and digital technologies, both in the formal academic context and beyond it.

Phone and tablets. Vector.

The project aims to generate knowledge about the connected nature of students’ learning practices, with a particular interest for how such practices manifest across contexts of learning, aided by digital technologies.  Illustration: Pixabay

About the project

The project explores how students’ digital learning practices can be used productively in higher education. In the digital age, students’ actual learning practices are increasingly diverging from instructional and assessment practices in higher education, as students capitalize on opportunities provided by novel digital technologies for communicating, networking and knowledge sharing. Still, it is highly unclear how students make sense of such information and practices and whether/how these could be integrated productively in higher education. Many of such opportunities abound but remain unexploited due to lacking knowledge about how digital ways of life may have academic value.

Objectives

The project aims to generate knowledge about the connected nature of students’ learning practices, with a particular interest for how such practices manifest across contexts of learning, aided by digital technologies. By investigating how students navigate in networked environments, the project aims to generate new understanding of how digital technologies can create opportunities for learning, how students use such opportunities and how such learning can be connected to activities and demands of higher education.

Background

This project examine students’ naturally occurring learning practices with networking and digital technologies, and explore how such technologies can be used most productively in higher education, as tools to access domain knowledge or means for communication.

The different sub-projects employ survey methods to collect students perception and experiences with digitally-supported connected learning activities; mixed-methods, combining interviews, survey data and a micro-ethnography of students connected learning activities and use of digital technologies;  and a design-based research, where researchers and teachers work together to identify and develop strategies to support cross-context learning in university programmes.  

Financing

The project is funded internally by incentive funds from the Department of Education and the Career program at the Faculty of Educational Sciences.

Publications

Selected

Damşa, C. & Nerland, M., Andreadakis, Z. (2019). An Ecological Perspective on Learner-Constructed Learning Spaces, British Journal of Educational Technology

Damşa, C. I. & Jornet Gil, A. (2017). Revisiting learning in higher education—Framing notions redefined through an ecological perspective (Invited paper in In A. Rajala, G Ritella, K. Kumpulainen & L. Wilkinson  (Eds.), Expanding Conceptualizations for the Study of Learning in the Knowledge Society , Special issue in the Frontline Learning Research, 4(4), 39-47

Damşa, C. & de Lange, T. (2109). Student-centred learning environments in higher education - From conceptualization to design, In C. Damşa & T. de Lange (eds.), Studentsentrerte perspektiver og tiltak i høyere utdanning. Et forskningsbasert innspill til kvalitetsarbeid i praksis, UNIPED, 42(1), 9-26

Damşa, C. & de Lange, T. (2109). Studentsentrerte perspektiver og tiltak i høyere utdanning. Et forskningsbasert innspill til kvalitetsarbeid i praksis, UNIPED, 42(1), 5-8

Damşa, C. I. & Jornet Gil, A. (2017). Revisiting learning in higher education—Framing notions redefined through an ecological perspective (Invited paper in In A. Rajala, G Ritella, K. Kumpulainen & L. Wilkinson  (Eds.), Expanding Conceptualizations for the Study of Learning in the Knowledge Society , Special issue in the Frontline Learning Research, 4(4), 39-47

Published Jan. 27, 2020 12:39 PM - Last modified Feb. 24, 2020 10:44 AM