Designs for Learning

Online ISSN: 1654-7608
Publications
Teachers' self-reported data relating to the seven elements of classroom management (N = 2579).
Teachers' self-reported data relating to the five elements of the digital competence model (N = 2579).
Article
Experiences from Upper Secondary Classrooms. A Qualitative Driven Mixed Method Study The aim of this study was to examine teachers’ professional digital competence and classroom management experiences with a qualitatively driven Mixed Method Design. The qualitative part of the study is based on interviews, focus groups, observations and quasi statistics. The first part of the study aims to examine these qualitative experiences and associations with a quantitative survey (N = 2579). The quantitative data examines the strength of the associations and the qualitative data show the nature of those associations with regard to upper secondary teachers’ professional digital competence and their classroom management abilities in ICT dense classroom environments. The SMIL-study was conducted in seven counties in Norway from 2012 to 2013. The qualitative part with observational data were analyzed in relation to the other qualitative data (interviews and focus groups) and then in relation to the quantitative part of the study. This part shows how teachers, school owners, school leaders and students perceived a relationship between teachers’ professional digital competence and their classroom management. The quantitative is related to the qualitative part and presents statistical regression analyses indicating that teachers’ individual professional digital competence predicted their classroom management abilities. The conclusion of the paper suggests that teachers’ professional digital competence and classroom management abilities are closely attached to each other in technology rich classrooms settings. The SMIL-study contributes to a broader understanding of teachers’ professional digital competence in the digitized school.
 
Understanding remixing practices: Analytical levels and timescales. Inspired by Ludvigsen (2011).  
Article
Scholars in several fields of research have increasingly started to pay attention to how young people remix media content on a wide range of sites and for various reasons. This article brings together socio-cultural and multimodal perspectives in order to provide a refinement of our understanding of remixing as a literacy practice. The author argues for two analytical lenses in order to understand how semiotic artefacts are negotiated by students and remixed in situ. By using the notion of timescale as a lynchpin between multimodal and socio-cultural analysis, the author seeks to understand how remixing work on different timescales. The author proposes the term Remixing to denote the development of culture across time, and the term remixing to denote a practice that can be empirically examined through close analysis of artefacts and activities in literacy practices.
 
Article
In this article, we explore how Action Research and Design-Based Research can be combined and used in the development of educational robotic tools. Our case study is the development of an educational tool called Number Blocks, and it combines physical interaction, learning, and direct feedback. Number Blocks support a child’s understanding of place value by allowing the child to experiment with large numbers. The tool was developed in collaboration with a class of 7- to 8-year-old children and their mathematics teacher. In this article, we compare and synthesize elements from different research methodologies and argue that these elements can constitute a structured approach to projects combining educational design research with new learning technologies. Key elements of the approach that has been developed include: acknowledging user input, active participation, developing a theoretical pre-analysis, and using an iterative approach.
 
Article
Adaptive Learning Technologies (ALT) and Learning Analytics (LA) are expected to contribute to the customisation and personalisation of pupil learning by continually calibrating and adjusting pupils’ learning activities towards their skill and competence levels. The overall aim of the study presented in this paper was to obtain a comprehensive understanding of how a systematic implementation of ALT influenced the learning outcomes, learning environment and motivation of 10- to 12-year-old pupils (grades 5–7 in Norwegian education) in mathematics, and the paper explores the following research question: How do systematic use of adaptive learning technology influence pupils’ learning and motivation? In this small-scale, Mixed Methods Research (MMR) study, a real-life introduction of adaptive technology was initiated and explored. Fifteen minutes of ALT homework each day or a total amount of 60 minutes a week, was applied to streamline individual volume training and root learning and thus free up time for practical mathematics and deep learning at school. The pupils’ level of competence, learning, motivation and basic psychological needs were measured quantitatively before and after the four-week intervention, and the intervention was observed qualitatively. The findings of the study indicate that use of ALT can help streamline volume training and root learning, and thus free up time for practical mathematics and deep learning at the upper primary level (ES = 0.39, P = 0.001). However, the study also indicates a interwoven relationship between learning, motivation and volume training that teachers should be aware of when using ALT. Particular attention should be paid when pupils learn new mathematical concepts.
 
Article
The article focuses on how aesthetic aspects of experience are involved in meaning making within an educational setting of body movement practice. The study explores stories of how physical education student teachers feel when participating in a dance lesson, with attention given to aesthetic aspects of embodied experiences in relation to meaning making. The study draws on Dewey’s theory of experimental learning. Aesthetic experience is defined as the feeling of wholeness or fulfilment in the transaction taking place. The categorical analysis of content, inspired by pragmatic epistemology analyses, uses the operational concepts of gaps, encounters, and relations. Three categories of stories emerge linked by the resemblance of positive or negative feelings expressed. The aesthetic experiences seem to inform the students of the purpose of what is undertaken, how to value the experience, and how the meaning of the embodied experience is perceived.
 
Applied mechanics test question on centroid of a composite object.
Extract of a student answer to applied mechanics test question on centroid of a composite object.
Extract of a second student's answer to applied mechanics test question on centroid of a composite object.
A meta-frame for analysing quantitative literacy events.
Article
Quantitative literacy is the ability to solve problems using mathematical and statistical information that is represented in various forms, including visual, written and mathematical forms. It is central to many of the disciplines within higher education. In this paper, we examine a particular quantitative literacy event within an undergraduate applied mechanics module and, in so doing, argue that teaching and learning are cultural performances of individuals’ relations to, in this case, quantitative literacy. Furthermore, we apply a framework for analysing the quantitative literacy demands present within higher education. By applying this framework in a critically reflexive manner, we demonstrate how the researcher similarly engages in a cultural performance in relation to quantitative literacy. We use this anecdotal example to argue that the application of analytical frameworks is inherently performative in nature, and propose the need for a meta-frame for understanding teaching, learning, and the frameworks through which they are viewed, as performance. This has implications for higher education more broadly in that, we argue, the frameworks used promote particular relations to lived teaching and learning experiences, and position teachers, learners, researchers and curriculum developers in particular ways.
 
Visual properties in the Statistic eXplorer application: a map, a scatterplot, a chart and a text box with explanations and student assignments (image source: Mikael Jern, Linköping University).
A vislet demonstrating the highlighting of Bangladesh and the dynalink function. This screenshot, and the following ones in figure 3-5, comes from https://vise.academy/en/.
A vislet demonstrating the population in the municipalities of Sweden.
In this view, the vislet demonstrates percentage of children.
In this zoomed in view of the vislet demonstrates the tiny red area and the box 'Knivsta'.
Article
This paper investigates the potential aspects of visual literacy that might appear when visual analytics and students interact in social science secondary classrooms. Interacting with visual technology likely demands new forms of literacy as various dimensions of complexity emerge in such learning activities where reading imposes order and relevance on what is displayed. However, only a few studies have evalu-ated how these visual processes emerge. Applying a socio-material semiotic approach, this paper examines the interactions between teachers, students and a visual analytics application, clarifying what strengthens or weakens the socio-material relations at work in emerging visual literacy. Methodologically, a design-based research approach is chosen. Notably, it is the early stages of the designed-based research cycle that are applied. Interventions were designed and conducted in five classes in three secondary schools in Sweden (97 students). The visual analytics application introduced was Statistics eXplorer. For each class, two to three lessons were video recorded to capture how the students interacted with the application. The socio-material analyses show that the interactions between the visual analytics and the students were both strengthened and weakened by different social as well as material forces. The actions were directed by visual properties such as movement, highlighting, and color, properties that often resulted in quick vision or locked vision. This paper argues that there needs to be a close didactic alignment and deeper knowledge of how visual interfaces attract students’ attention and how students’ visual literacy emerges in that relationship.
 
Two stills from the animated film Out-breakers showing pencil figures.
Article
This paper applies notions of transformation to the analysis of data on semiotic processes related to making an animated film. The data derives from a study conducted in an upper secondary school in Copenhagen with students (18 years old) participating in a week-long workshop. The paper applies the concept of transduction with a focus on film storyboards: how students transform ideas when working with different modes (audio, visual) of representation. Data includes discourse analysis of semiotic processes and texts, referring to Social Semiotics and the methodology of Mediated Discourse Analysis. Conclusions highlight transformation as relevant for learning to reflect on media and the implications for teaching, given the increasing influence of visual modes of communication.
 
Article
This article presents an intervention study where two conditions of reading instruction are compared. In a base condition four teachers—two in the experimental groups and two in the control groups—and their students in grade 5 discuss newspaper texts during a regular lesson. The majority of the students were poor comprehenders. In the intervention condition, the teachers in the experimental groups used a model of structured text talk, Questioning the Author (QtA), after repeatedly having participated in seminars led by the investigators where the model was practised. During the regular lessons the four teachers mostly asked questions to check if the students know the meaning of difficult words. The students made few inferences and reflections. During the QtA lessons the teachers’ question types had undergone a change. There was a dramatical increase in the number of inference- and half-open questions and the students made numerous inferences, reflections and initiated own questions. This was not the case in the control groups.
 
Overview of numbers of participants, grades, schools, teachers and science subjects.
Storyboard provided to the students to increase scaffolding in their process of making a digital multimodal representation.
An example of a student screencast about photosynthesis and respiration. Here reproduced with screen dumps and transcriptions of the associated speech.
Article
This project studies designs for learning in the multimodal science classroom in primary and lower-secondary schools in Denmark. The aim of the study is to work with teachers to develop a start-up didactic design that raises student awareness of the affordances provided by different representational modes and thus enhances student production of digital multimodal representations as an expression of learning and science culture. The project takes a design-based research (DBR) approach and uses a social-semiotic theoretical framework. Research in using representations for teaching and learning in science reveals that students’ potential for learning concepts can be strengthened through the transformation of representations and the production of multimodal representations. The first design principle is to organize activities and dialogues among the students that will enhance awareness of the affordances provided by the different modes of representations. The second design principle is that students, through their own thorough practical experiments and dialogues, learn to use representations that show data. The third design principle is that students produce digital multimodal representations as expressions of their learning and reflect on and evaluate these on the basis of known assessment criteria for multimodal representations in science.
 
Article
We took the opportunity to meet with Dr Arlene Archer from Cape Town, South Africa, when she visited Stockholm in May 2014 to give a keynote speech at the 4th International Designs for Learning conference. Dr Arlene Archer has been the coordinator of the Writing Centre at the University of Cape Town since 1999 and is well known to many of our readers for her extensive work within the fields of academic literacy and multimodality. Among her recent publications is Multimodal Approaches to Research and Pedagogy - Recognition, Resources and Access (Archer & Newfield, 2014).
 
Article
When in June 2013 The Guardian newspaper (UK) asked us to ‘help create the whole picture’ with the GuardianWitness app (‘upload your part of the story faster with 4GEE at witness.guardian.co.uk’) we know the citizen reporter and the eyewitness photographer have been allied to faster, participation and the double page spread (The Guardian, Saturday 06.07.13 pp 2 and 3). Undermining the authorship, authority and arguably the professionalism of the journalist and photographer, the amateur enthusiast, key eye-witness or commentator are crowd-sourced to open up, enhance and create a whole, diverse picture of world events that, in the advertisement at least, speaks of a change in the relationship of passive consumer to traditional authorities such as newspapers.
 
Student A: Photo of paintings, decorating the walls of a ward.
Student A´s photo.
Article
This article outlines ideas and some results of a design-for-learning experiment, involving nurse students working with arts in the nurse education in Denmark. The original purpose of the experiment was to investigate new ways of supporting personal knowledge building and building of professional judgement skills for nurse students, according to a phenomenological and aesthetic approach to learning. However, the results and learning outcome for the students surprisingly showed that working with arts had the effect that the nurse students began acting creatively in their building of personal and professional knowledge. The experiment suggests that working with arts can contribute to building nurse students’ building of ‘relational creativity’ as a basis for professional judgement. Relational creativity is not an established theoretical concept, but the article argues that the term might have significance not only to nurse students, but also to new ways of thinking about knowledge, professional judgement and learning perspectives in relational professions in general.
 
Article
Transmedia design, which involves extending a narrative from one medium to another, offers a context for potentially rich, interdisciplinary learning. We explored these opportunities by creating a week-long workshop to guide 7th-grade student teams in designing games based on comic books about viruses. This design case describes the framework and rationale behind our design choices. It illustrates our experiences by drawing on field note observations and audio recordings, student-generated design artifacts, student and facilitator interviews, and planning documentation from across two iterations of the workshop. We reflect on our experiences in attempting to balance (1) the dual focus of the workshop on science learning and game design through our choices of comic and game genres; and (2) the ability for students to be both autonomous and to receive necessary guidance through our enforcement of design constraints and interdependent team roles. We also reflect on the contextual factors that mediated our work, including students’ existing interests and peer relations, their teachers’ involvement, and our own team’s shifting expertise as membership changed from one iteration to the next. Among other things, our experiences highlight the importance of designing to allow for change, particularly as learning through collaborative transmedia game design can occur in unanticipated ways. Finally, we reflect on plans for future iterations of this workshop.
 
Article
The introduction and implementation of ICT depends not only on technological issues but also on social and institutional factors. To respond to these challenges, in this article we describe our engagement with an ICT4D research case conducted in collaboration with the Community Empowerment Programme (CEP) of the non-governmental organization (NGO) Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (BRAC). The project applies the expansive learning approach in a developing country context, with the aim of achieving ICT skills building in the broadest sense. In this article, we look more closely at one intervention within this research: digital literacy workshops for a sample of CEP field facilitators using ‘photovoice’ techniques. We apply Engeström’s expansive learning framework for ICT intervention on the ground level, showing how intermediary actions and tools can be used in order to create active learning spaces for the community development program’s field facilitators, and we explain how the photovoice technique can be an effective intermediary tool for expansive learning. To reach this conclusion, Nonaka and Takeuchi’s knowledge-creation framework serves as a lens through which to examine the dynamic nature of the knowledge conversion context and its influence on the progression of knowledge.
 
The participants use the color talking dictionary application.
Illustration of the Skype application.
The participants use the Skype application.
The participants use the portable affordance of the digital tablet.
The approximate movement of the children through the rooms of the preschool when showing their environment on Skype.
Article
In this video ethnographic study, a social semiotic approach has been used to explore how the use of digital tablets in preschools may enable children’s communication in a minority language. The results show how preschool children use the emerging affordances of digital tablets in order to act as producers of minority language activities, where their prior knowledge is acknowledged. Applications such as Skype enable peers to communicate in a mutual language beyond the limitations of geographic preschool boundaries. Limitations, such as the lack of appropriate applications available in minority languages, are also discussed. Furthermore, a proposal is made to broaden the understanding of what could constitute multilingual activities.
 
Parallel distributed processing (pdp) model from Adams (1990: 158)  
Screen dump from abc.dk  
Article
In grade 1, Danish students used a talking book with TTS (text-to-speech) and participated in a learning design with emphasis on decoding and reading for meaning in written text. The students all read the same unfamiliar text, which for many of the students would traditionally be considered being at their frustration level. Basing the intervention on connectionist theory of reading and Share’s self-teaching hypothesis, students were instructed to try to read the words before activating the TTS-function. Only five students out of 17 used the software in ways that could promote selfteaching, but underused the support. Five other students very quickly refrained from trying to decode, instead clicking the full page TTS. Another five students did not at any point try to decode words independently. These results suggest that by using TTS and talking books in reading instruction without measures to fine tune the scaffolding, it is very doubtful whether any students benefit from the TTS at all.
 
Article
The paper explores the challenges of designing personalised learning paths in SPOCs (Small Private Online Courses). It opens with a discussion on different approaches to tailoring teaching to individual needs and moves on to introduce a SPOC that was developed for Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for primary and lower-secondary teachers in Denmark. The SPOC, which performs adaptation using a recommendation system, allows for students to create a personalised learning path on the basis of three components: a learner profile, a content model and an adaptation model. Using the three components as a starting point, the SPOC is analysed in order to identify differences between the intended design (what the SPOC set out to do), the implemented design (how the SPOC is used by its users) and the attained design (the outcome of the SPOC). The analysis draws on data from a series of semi-structured interviews with SPOC students and their lecturers. We find that the implemented design deviates from the intended design in several respects, most notably in relation to how the personalised learning paths are created and how decisions as to curriculum contents are made. Moreover, it is suggested that differences between the intended design and the implemented design are rooted in differences in the learning perspectives of the students, the lecturers and the educational designers of the SPOC. Despite the fact that the implemented design deviates from the intended design, the attained design is nevertheless successful in that a high percentage of the students enrolled succeeded in passing their examinations and thus obtained the formal qualifications in the subjects they teach. It is concluded that further research in adaptive learning designs for online platforms such as MOOCs (Massive Open Online Course) and SPOCs is needed to minimise the gap between intended designs and implemented designs in order to create a more personalised learning experience for the students involved.
 
a & 9b.
Article
In this paper we provide a multimodal account of historical changes in secondary school textbooks in England and their social significance. Adopting a social semiotic approach to text and text making we review learning resources across core subjects of the English national curriculum, English, Science and Mathematics. Comparing textbooks from the 1930s, 1980s and 2000s, we show that a) all modes operating in textbooks -typography, image, writing and layout- contribute to meaning and potential for learning b) that the use of these modes has changed between 1930 and now, in ways significant for social relations between and across makers and users of textbooks. Designers and readers / learners now take responsibility for coherence, which was previously the exclusive domain of authors. Where previously reading paths were fixed by makers it may now be left to learners to establish these according to their interests. For users of textbooks the changes in design demand new forms of ‘literacy’; a fluency not only in ‘reading’ writing, image, typography and layout jointly, but in the overall design of learning environments. We place these changes against the backdrop of wider social changes and features of the contemporary media landscape, recognizing a shift from stability, canonicity and vertical power structures to ‘horizontal’, more open, participatory relations in the production of knowledge.
 
A birds-eye plan of the nursery's outdoor play space.
Mapping children's running play: 0-55 seconds.
Mapping children's running play: 0-25 seconds.
Mapping children's running play: 25-55 seconds.
Article
Young children’s play is highly multimodal, with gesture, gaze, movement and speech often combined simultaneously in collaborative meaning-making. This article argues for a multimodal social semiotic perspective on play, recognising that this requires representation of data that brings multimodal elements into careful consideration. In this article, multimodal transcription is used to examine a video recording of three and four-year-old children playing a chasing game in an English nursery school. Map-like transcripts, including an animated transcript, are used to document an instance of their play, drawing particular attention to placement in space over time. Whilst such moments of play may at first appear fleeting and chaotic, multimodal transcription reveals the communicative, creative and agentive capacities of young children in a multitude of forms. The transcripts highlight and make evident the ways in which roles and rules of play are carefully negotiated moment-by-moment in multiple modes. In this way, map-like multimodal transcripts are presented as devices to highlight meaning-making where it may not normally be looked for, seen or recognised.
 
Image of a crying girl photographed in the USA and writing about poor families in England. (Daily Mirror, April 14, 2014).  
Child 1: Cohesion between image and writing in content via the image of a dog and the caption " This is what my great grandmother's dog looks like " .  
Child 3: Cohesion via distant perspective of a boat together with writing about persons, places and the boat trip.  
Child 4: Textual cohesion via the resource of colour, but incongruence between the content of the image and the content of writing.  
Child 2: Cohesion via the image of candy floss and the mentioning of candy floss in writing and via decontextualisation of the motif together with personal writing about a trip to Spain.  
Article
In classrooms where computers are used as tools for text-making, images and photographs from e.g. Google, here called “prefabricated images”, can be selected and copied into texts and combined with writing. In this article children’s use of prefabricated images as resources for personal texts is investigated with specific focus on cohesion between the modes of image and writing. When prefabricated images occur in combination with writing about a personal experience the specific motifs shown in the image are unrelated to the text-maker, but the results of this study show that cohesion may still be obtained, for example via colour, naturalistic modality or decontextualization of the motif in the image via a close-up or a distant perspective. Copying and recontextualization of photographs are common not only in schools but also in professional settings as image banks supply images to, for example, news editors and journalists, and contemporary text creation is often characterized by “representation-as-selection” (Adami and Kress, 2010). The ability to obtain cohesion across modes can be regarded as a defining feature of success in multimodal text-making (Wyatt-Smith and Kimber, 2009), and also for the interpretation of contemporary texts.
 
Article
The aim of this study is to investigate children’s out-of-school learning in digital gaming communities. This was achieved by exploring girls’ participation in Minecraft communities. Data were generated through interviews, video-recorded play sessions and video-stimulated recall. Multimodal interactional analysis was applied in order to analyze children’s mediated actions. The components of Wenger’s Social Theory of Learning were used as a basis when exploring learning in children’s out-of-school digital gaming communities. Five significant themes of what characterizes learning in digital gaming communities were identified: learning through experiencing, learning through belonging, learning through performing, learning through struggling and learning through enacting participatory identities. The main findings are presented in a tentative conceptual framework that can support teachers, school leaders and policymakers who are interested in connecting children’s out-of-school learning experiences with their learning in school.
 
The transformative process of musical learning and performance. 
Pantomimic representation of nuances. In Figures 1-4 the conductor shows differences of nuances in the music. He illustrates nuances through the spatial positioning of the left hand, from high to low. A high position of the hand signifies a loud nuance, while a low position of the hand signifies a low nuance. He also illustrates low nuances with his bowed body and legs. 
Pantomimic demonstration of energy and force. In Figures 5-9 the conductors demonstrate energy and force in the music, illustrated through tensed body, different facial expressions, clenched hand gesture, and taut arm muscles. 
The prototypical repertoire of action. 
Article
This article presents musical communication from a multimodal, social semiotic and design-oriented perspective. Based on the notion that communication and learning constitute a social process of transformative sign-making, the article explores how choir conductors during video-recorded rehearsals and concerts use different modes of communication, such as gestures, gazes, body movements, singing, printed score and piano playing, as representations of the music they are working with, and how these modes are transformed into singing voices through translation, reshaping and imitation. The way conductors design their approaches to the music affords various choices and conditions for choir singers to learn and perform the music. The article draws attention to the complexity and multiplicity of an audiovisual music culture, characterised by different repertoires of action in performing and illustrating the music and by choir-specific, genre-specific and locally specific musical language constructions, in which learning is equated with interpretation and performance.
 
The knowledge forms of educational gaming.
Article
Based upon a series of design interventions with the educational computer game series Global Conflicts at various secondary schools, this article explores how educational gaming can be understood as a complex interplay between four knowledge forms – i.e. students’ everyday knowledge (non-specialised knowledge), the institutionalised knowledge forms of schooling, teachers’ subject-specific knowledge (specialised knowledge forms), and game-specific knowledge forms such as professional journalism, which is one of the inspirations for the game scenario. Depending on how the GC series was enacted by different teachers and students, these knowledge forms were brought into play rather differently. More specifically, several students experienced genre clashes in relation to their expectations of what it means to play a computer game, whereas other students experienced emerging genres – e.g. when one student was able to transform the game experience into a journalistic article that challenged her classmates’ understanding of journalistic writing.
 
Four stages of DBR (adapted from Reeves, 2006).
Course Content and Intervention.
Article
Student engagement is significantly related to both retention and learning outcome. Hence, teachers need to take into account how their practices affect student engagement. The purpose of this study was to explore how teachers and researchers collaboratively could develop learning activities with learning technologies (LTs) to increase engagement, using Design-Based Research (DBR) The intervention included an online assessment application and a virtual learning environment (VLE) and was implemented in two classes in an upper secondary school. Classroom observations and intervention evaluations were analysed. Analysis of the intervention indicates that the teachers and researchers collaboratively could design interventions that facilitated student engagement. The LTs enabled insight into students’ knowledge and learning process and opened for new possibilities to engage for students and a change in teacher practices. When conditions for learning changed as a result of the implementation of LTs, both student interaction and teacher practises changed. However, it was not observed that the teacher would sustain the design without support. While this might reflect many underlying reasons, it also implies that educational goals and visions need to be consistent and communicated to practitioners, otherwise teachers will not have the guidance needed to advance, nor to evaluate, their professional development. ________________________________________________________
 
Article
Teachers in their practice make choices grounded in their teaching experience resulting in what could be labelled design solutions. An identified problem is that these design solutions stay at the level of individual solutions and do not reach the teaching community. The aim of this article is to study how teachers´ design solutions can be systematically captured, organized, and communicated through design patterns and a pattern language. Building on participatory design we have together with teachers used and adapted the concept of design patterns and pattern languages as a way of capturing, documenting and communicating design problems and solutions to these. This structured approach led to the teachers seeing connections and interrelations between problems, and that a solution to one of these also helped in alleviating other problems. The formulation of design patterns and proposed pattern languages thus gave the teachers an overview of their practice that would otherwise be difficult to obtain. The content of the design patterns show what problems that are dealt with by the teachers through their design solutions. The structure of the final pattern language shows how problems and solutions are connected to larger goals for the teachers, such as improving the communication with students, as well as the importance of sharing good examples between colleagues.
 
A meeting in the night. Game genre and atmosphere can greatly influence the type of communication taking place, both between players and between player and environment. Quest texts in World of Warcraft (above) are of a verbose nature, and cooperating players have been observed to make decisions through an in-game voting procedure. (Published with permission from Blizzard Entertainment Inc.). 
Article
The use of commercial, off-the-shelf computer games as teaching tools is an interesting possibility, but one that may alter the teacher’s role. Unlike specially adapted, game-like educational software, students’ attitudes toward the learning potential of computer games may be very different in the presence or absence of an accompanying teacher. The purpose of this work is to investigate whether commercial, unmodified computer games have potential as a tool for learning enhancement, whether varying properties of game genres have an impact on study results, and how the students perceive the teachers role in a learning environment using computer games. Twenty-one students, all of them participants in a longer-term trial programme in game-based education, were interviewed concerning their perceptions of the learning environment, their preferred game genres, and the outcome of their studies. Our findings show that this form of learning results in significantly increased knowledge. It also appears that accompanying teacher activities are important, especially when successfully linked to in-game activities.
 
The model illustrates the process between topic and working exercises and authority in co-operation.  
Article
This paper considers how computerized work is organized in a class for younger pupils in a compulsory school and how patterns of interaction and use of digital learning resources influence the pupils’ work at computers within a Learning Design Sequence (LDS). Data come from a case study, which is a part of a wider research project, “Digital media and learning design sequences in Swedish schools – user perspective”. The case study is in the research field of information and communication technology (ICT) and the theoretical framework is based on socio-semiotic and socio-cultural perspectives. The methodological approach is user-oriented and the methods I employ refer to field observation and observation of video recordings. Learning Design Sequence is an analytical model, which is constructed by the research project and the data in the case study derives from the phase of “transforming and forming” within LDS. The result shows that processes of organization, patterns of interaction and affordances of the digital learning resources provide essential semiotic resources that mediate and constrain the pupils’ work at the computers.
 
Frequencies of design patterns in the selected scenarios.
Frequencies of design principles in the selected scenarios.
Article
Ubiquitous Computing, Mobile Computing and the Internet of Things (collectively referred to as UMI herein) involve recent advances in technology areas such as low-cost and miniaturized processing and sensing technologies, high-bandwidth wireless networking and so on. UMI technologies can also support the recent attempts to reform computing education. Yet, to accomplish this potential, relevant UMI learning scenarios are needed. Creating such scenarios can be challenging, since this particular field of computing education is still in its infancy. This paper discusses learning design knowledge which can orientate the future design of UMI learning scenarios. Content analysis was applied on ten quality UMI-oriented learning scenarios. The scenarios were freely accessible in online platforms, and they were designed for middle school education and for the UMI domain. Two different methodological approaches were employed: the first one involved mapping the scenarios to existing predefined learning design elements (i.e. design concepts, design principles, and design patterns). The learning design elements were previously defined in an online database and they involved ubiquitous tools. The second method involved mapping the scenarios to the parameters of a UMI learning ecology. The performed analysis revealed design concepts, principles, patterns and key characteristics underpinning the selected UMI scenarios: they cater for students’ active learning and engage them in interdisciplinary projects in which students are learning across contexts in groups and solve meaningful problems that exploit the functionalities of the UMI technologies. Several recommendations concerning the creation of quality UMI learning scenarios are suggested, such as: striking a balance between conceptual understanding and 21st century lifelong learning skills, highlighting how students’ collaboration is expected to happen in a UMI scenario, providing many opportunities for instructional scaffolding and explicitly mentioning spatiotemporal aspects of the UMI scenarios. These findings could be of interest to computing education researchers, tutors, and curriculum designers who wish to design UMI oriented educational scenarios.
 
Article
What do we actually mean when we talk about ‘text’? By asking such a broad, yet challenging question, we become aware of what is problematic about this field of study. Nowadays it is necessary to have quite an open attitude when the concept or concepts of ‘text’ are discussed. This is because there are so many ways in which researchers approach ‘text’. We must decide which perspectives we wish to operate with, and then distinguish ‘text’ from that which does not fall within this definition.1
 
The learning design sequence, original (Selander & Kress, 2008, 2010). 
Transcript of example 1 featuring the components of the slide and the presenter's speech. 
Transcript of example 2 featuring the components of the slide and the presenter's speech. 
Transcript of example 3 featuring the components of the slide and the presenter's speech. 
The Learning Design Sequence, amended. 
Article
Presentation is the default mode of communication in higher education. Teacher education is no exception, and student teachers learn the practice of presenting by observing their subject teachers and by performing their own presentations. This study proposes an analytical framework based on the Learning Design Sequence (LDS) (Selander, 2008), which captures the design and processual aspects of presentation in the context of teacher education. Subject to observations are the student teachers’ performances of reports from their practicum placement. The study departs from Shulman’s (1987) ideas regarding what constitute essential teaching skills. He identified the transformation and representation of subject content as two key aspects of teaching. Transformation entails didactic reasoning regarding how to make a subject matter comprehensible, whereas representation entails giving ideas a material shape. By approaching presentation as a semiotic practice (Zhao, 2014), transformation and representation take on additional meaning; it is akin to a sign-making activity motivated by pedagogical ends. By using the LDS as an analytical tool, the students’ agentive process of sign making is modelled as two transformation cycles. The first cycle captures the students’ pre-forming activity of giving shape to knowledge by designing a semiotic artefact: a PowerPoint slide show. The second cycle captures the performance of the slides for an audience. The model reflects the dynamic multimodal interplay that occurs between the presenter and the semiotic artefact during performance. The amended LDS supports the analysis of presentation at three levels: the semiotic, interpretative and curricular levels.
 
Article
This paper aims to identify multimodal designs for learning in diverse and developing contexts, where access to resources remains vastly unequal. Using case studies from South African education, the paper explores ways of surfacing the range of students’ resources which are often not noticed or valued in formal educational settings. The studies showcased here demonstrate how ethnographic and textually-based approaches can be combined. Opening up the semiotic space of the classroom through multimodal designs for learning is important for finding innovative ways of addressing access, diversity, and past inequalities. This is of relevance not only to South Africa, but a range of global contexts. The paper argues that multimodal designs for learning can involve interrogating the relation between ‘tradition’ and ‘modernity’; harnessing students’ creative practices as resources for pedagogy; developing metalanguages for critical reflection; creating less regulated pedagogical spaces in order to enable useful teaching and learning practices.
 
A graphic facilitation process seen from the position of the participants (source: photo by author R. Ørngreen, of author H. Hautopp in an ongoing facilitation process).
Overview of the reviewed material.
This figure illustrates two ways of drawing quick visualizations of a human. The first (a) is the classic abstraction of using symbols as a circle for the head, eclipse for arms, etc. However, even such an abstraction takes time to carry out in the very rudimental way shown, in particular, as it requires the drawer to lift the pen. The second (b) uses a different iconic solution, the "star man," which illustrates a human in a star-like shape. This is drawn quickly and can be done in one pen stroke, with the added possibility of giving the human different postures, movements, etc., faster than in the other version. (Source: figure drawn by author R. Ørngreen).
Article
Graphic facilitation is a growing practice in organizational contexts and is slowly emerging in educational contexts. However, as the review in this paper shall demonstrate, there is a shortage of research in the field. The purpose of this paper is to illustrate the practical application of graphic facilitation with the aim of outlining a suggestion for future research in relation to educational and organisational settings. Based on our review, we turn to related research areas, in particular design sketching, but also social learning theories and problem-based learning. We describe and exemplify how these related research areas can expand research perspectives on graphic facilitation, its use, processes, and outcomes and the roles of the participants involved.
 
Forms of engagement.
Article
This article presents a new theoretical and methodological way of studying museum visi-tors' involvement and meaning-making at a museum exhibition. Our approach draws predominantly on a design-theoretic and multimodal analysis of learning and communication. This approach is mainly concerned with a) the design aspects of learning resources; b) the learners' engagement and communication; c) their way of transforming given signs to produce (redesign) their own representations in relation to d) personal engagement as well as a specific areas of knowledge. Multimodality pays special attention to the interplay between different modes in communication. In the article, we use a design-theoretic, multimodal approach to analyse visitors' engagement. This is done by filming the visitors in pairs to see how they walk through the exhibition, where they stop, what they talk about and how their conversation develops. They are also given cameras so they can take photos of those parts of the exhibition they find especially interesting, Afterwards, the visitors are asked to draw a map of the exhibition and they are also interviewed. We also present a model of how to categorize forms of engagement.
 
Article
- a model for designing assignments for online courses in Continuing Professional Development The paper explores the challenges of designing assignments for online learning environments and looks into the use of models as analytic thinking tools for course designers. The paper opens with a discussion on challenges central to designing assignments for online learning environments in higher education. Subsequently, two widely used models for course design, Salmon’s five-stage-model (2002, 2003) and Ryan & Ryan’s TARL model (2013), are explored with the aim of evaluating their usefulness in Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for teachers and pre-school teachers, a context which has received relatively little attention in terms of research on course design. A number of assignments that have been used in online CPD courses for (pre-)school teachers are analysed with the aim of identifying design patterns, i.e. examples of how recurring pedagogical problems can be solved and, on the basis of this, a new model that can support CPD course designers in designing assignments, the Three Spaces Model For Online CPD, is presented and discussed.
 
Article
Little is known about preschoolers and their engagement with digital tablets. This article addresses this gap by drawing on findings from two research projects. The aim is to illustrate how children make meaning, transform and play while engaging with various applications comprised by the materiality of the digital tablets. Empirical video material has been multimodally transcribed and empirical examples are framed by a design theoretical perspective. Findings capture diverse experiences illustrating how preschoolers creatively manipulate and playfully transform didactic designs. The results illustrate how children´s self-initiated play with application’s design shifts the balance of authority that typically exists between adults and children, and the article concludes in a suggestion of how the notion of play can be understood with a design theoretical perspective.
 
Definition of Sudoku Problem-solving Order (source: compiled by this study)
Design concept of forking paths of labyrinth: integrated with Sudoku problem-solving order (source: compiled by this study)
Interactive design of labyrinth (source: compiled by this study) see http://can.elt.nhcue.edu.tw/LabyrinthineSudoku/index.html
Article
Sudoku is an intelligence game that has fascinated many people. In addition to offering entertainment, it also attracts players to solve more challenging Sudoku questions. Sudoku novices tend to fail to focus on understanding the operation rules because the grid, words, and numbers of Sudoku are too complicated. The main purpose of this study is to integrate the concept of illustrations of labyrinthine multipath into the interface design of rules teaching of Sudoku to complete the learning design of Sudoku games. The research subjects were a total of 73 elementary school third graders in Miaoli County in Taiwan. The study used a single group pre-test and formal test design to investigate the difference in students’ learning effectiveness of Sudoku rules before and after they played Sudoku games. This study used a self-developed ARCS learning motivation scale to analyze the effect of Sudoku game on students’ learning motivation, and conducted in-depth interviews with three students with low learning achievement to observe their learning process and how their learning interest was aroused. The results showed that the Sudoku learning design with illustrations of labyrinthine multipath could help students understand Sudoku rules and enhance their learning interest in Sudoku.
 
Article
The aim of this article is to examine the significance of teachers’ conceptions of quality when assessing digital multimodal student productions. The authors have undertaken a design-based research study to examine how to support teachers’ use of explicit quality criteria for multimodal production in 5th to 8th grade Danish and History classes (year 11–15). Through the development of a tool to support teachers’ drawing up and use of assessment criteria for digital multimodal products, teachers’ conceptions of quality of multimodal products were examined based on interviews and classroom observations. The authors propose four reasons for teachers not regarding qualities of digital multimodal genres as legitimate in school. Firstly, the relevance of product quality is not acknowledged. Second, opposing and confusing communication purposes for multimodal products in school leave no room for clear quality criteria and assessment of the products. Third, the learning potential of other modes than language is not accepted. And finally, the new digital multimodal genres are understood and assessed in the light of traditional school genres.
 
Students' use of the available resources in the digital application.
Violence expressed through image. The woman holding a head in her hand. Students' representations are published with students' approval.
An example of how students texts are linked to students as consumers.
Available Application Resources.
Article
The young generation are both consumers and producers of digital multimodal texts and can thus be seen as cocreators of the culture and the contexts that they are part of. Learning more about how students create multimodal texts and what students’ texts are about can extend the understanding of contemporary meaning making. This study examines 23 Swedish fifth-grade students’ multimodal digital stories in a school context. The aim of this research was to understand the meaning that the students made in their digital narratives and to describe how they made that meaning. This study’s multimodal textual analysis is based on the multiliteracies perspective. The results indicate that all of the students, to varying degrees, took advantage of the available digital and modal resources. Some students chose writing as their sole mode, but others used all of the available resources. Furthermore, the results revealed that students’ popular culture experiences influenced many of their texts, which can indicate that popular culture texts are used as resources for making meaning about the world.
 
Interrelation between the complementary processes and roles  
In a schematic form, illustration of the chronological relationship between teacher and students as learning designers regarding the work. Orange = teacher; blue = students
Article
Today’s digitalization allows users to interact, collaborate, communicate and create user-generated content. The technology is intuitive and easy to use even for young children, and new learning opportunities emerge. Particularly, students’ production as a learning form benefits from digitalization as the new opportunities enable young students to integrate their playing competencies and skills into the formal school learning. This paper presents and discusses a theory regarding students’ digital production from a learning and design-for-learning perspective, which is generated based on the project Netbook 1:1 (2009-2012), where information and communication technology (ICT) was readily accessible for each child at school and at home in grades 1-3 at two Danish public schools. The paper presents a Four Levels Design for Learning Model, which can be used for both design for learning and analyses of learning processes. The discussion is supported by empirical examples from the project, which explored emerging relations amongst ICT, production and subject matter-specific practice (Danish, mathematics and interdisciplinary activities). We understand design for learning as related to both process and agency, and in the study, we have examined and found that students are capable of operating as learning designers.
 
Top-cited authors
Staffan Selander
  • Stockholm University
Kristina Danielsson
  • Linnaeus University
John Airey
  • Stockholm University
Farzaneh Moinian
  • Uppsala University
Jacob Davidsen
  • Aalborg University