Developing Educational designs supporting student engagement through networked project studies

Jørgen Lerche Nielsen, Lars Birch Andreasen

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The chapter discusses how learner engagement can be facilitated through educational designs that make conscious use of various online communication technologies. The discussions will be based on cases from the Danish Master’s programme in ICT and Learning (MIL), where students from all over Denmark within a networked learning structure are studying in groups combining on-site seminars with independent and challenging virtually organized project periods, implementing new educational technology, which require teachers who are flexible and aware of the different challenges in the networked environment. The aim of the chapter is to discuss the application of new technological possibilities in educational settings inspired by problem-based learning.

In our understanding, an educational design is constituted through the interplay of the pedagogical perspective, the chosen technologies, and the specific activities that unfold. This interplay is important in order to make a difference, as the experience is that new technologies do not in themselves guarantee increasing learning quality. The chapter will discuss examples of how learners as well as teachers have developed imaginative ways of implementing new technological possibilities in educational settings. The examples will include how sometimes seemingly simple technologies can be used in innovative pedagogical ways to increase learners’ involvement. Another example to be discussed in the chapter derives from an online seminar on ICT and Learning in Organizations, where the traditional practice of using online discussions were challenged, by expecting the students not only individually to take part in online discussions, but also on a group basis to discuss what kind of theme or opening question they would pose in order to invite co-students to take part in the online dialogues. Thus in contrast to the traditional understanding of the teacher as the sole designer of the learning environment, here the students were involved as active co-designers.

Our understanding of problem-based learning is characterized by collaborative project work in groups, where students actively are constructing their own knowledge. The development of students’ information literacy is an important aspect of applying problem-based learning.

In our contribution we will reflect on the many varied dimensions of the teacher role, the challenges for the students as both independent and interconnected learners, and discuss cases of developing student engagement through educational designs that facilitates group organized project work and learners’ participation in dialogically organized online seminars. Here we will focus on how the dimensions of participation and reification are played out.

TitelIncreasing Student Engagement and Retention using Mobile Applications : Smartphones, Skype and Texting Technologies
RedaktørerPatrick Blessinger, Laura Wankel, Charles Wankel
Antal sider27
Udgivelses stedBingley, UK
ForlagEmerald Group Publishing
Publikationsdatojan. 2013
ISBN (Trykt)9781781905098
StatusUdgivet - jan. 2013
NavnCutting-Edge Technologies in Higher Education

Citer dette

Nielsen, J. L., & Birch Andreasen, L. (2013). Developing Educational designs supporting student engagement through networked project studies. I P. Blessinger, L. Wankel, & C. Wankel (red.), Increasing Student Engagement and Retention using Mobile Applications: Smartphones, Skype and Texting Technologies (Bind 6/D, s. 19-46). Emerald Group Publishing. Cutting-Edge Technologies in Higher Education