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  • 1.
    Ahlbäck, Tor
    et al.
    Växjö University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Education.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Växjö University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Education.
    Let´s think about it: considering the strengths of Web-based collaboration2005In: ICT in Teacher Education: Challenging Prospects / [ed] M. Chaib & A-K Svensson, Jönköping: Jönköping University Press & Encell , 2005, 100-111 p.Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper describes work with student collaboration in a distance education teacher-training program at Växjö. A previous study on collaborative strategies was presented new students in order to test possible effects on their learning process. What possible effects could this have on how students used and designed their learning in a Virtual Learning Environment? Were there any signs of an enhanced meta-cognitive awareness compared to previous year? Students’ evaluation of assignment and results from a web-enquiry was analysed. Results showed an increased reflection upon work process and more references to future praxis as teachers shift from a knowledge process to a learning process. Results also show a more strategic use of the tools in the VLE. By giving students some reflective tools prior to their assignment, we have tried to use meta-cognitive thinking as “a way to teach” and not as a “subject” itself.

  • 2.
    Creelman, Alastair
    et al.
    Linnaeus University, The University Library.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of pedagogy.
    Completion Rates – A False Trail to Measuring Course Quality?: Let’s Call in the HEROEs Instead2013In: European Journal of Open and Distance Learning, ISSN 1027-5207, E-ISSN 1027-5207, Vol. 16, no 2, 40-49 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Statistics are often used to reveal significant differences between online and campus-based education. The existence of online courses with low completion rates is often used to justify the inherent inferiority of online education compared to traditional classroom teaching. Our study revealed that this type of conclusion has little substance. We have performed three closely linked analyses of empirical data from Linnaeus University aimed at reaching a better understanding of completion rates. Differences in completion rates revealed themselves to be more substantial between faculties than between distribution forms. The key-factor lies in design. Courses with the highest completion rates had three things in common; active discussion forums, complementing media and collaborative activities. We believe that the time has come to move away from theoretical models of learning where web-based learning/distance learning/e-learning are seen as simply emphasizing the separation of teacher and students. Low completion rates should instead be addressed as a lack of insight and respect for the consequences of online pedagogical practice and its prerequisites.

  • 3.
    Nilsson, Monica E
    et al.
    Stockholm University.
    Wihlborg, Monne
    Lunds University.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health, Social Work and Behavioural Sciences, School of Education, Psychology and Sport Science.
    Will this be on the exam?: The tension between use value and exchange value in higher education and its relation to forms of learning2007Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper explores discourses in higher education viewing two pairs of concepts, on the one hand, the concepts of use- vs. exchange value and on the other, the concepts of deep vs. surface learning. Drawing on Yrjö Engeströms’ position of use- vs. exchange value, and his elaboration on the activity system, we assert that any component in an activity system combines two inherent forces which compete yet presuppose one other. It is this dialectical relationship which makes systems dynamic and thus change over time. The paper is based on an empirical study using data from a distance- and net based course in general pedagogy at a Swedish university. In the context of higher education, the tension between use- and exchange value is present on a daily basis in the life and work of instructors and students. A student has to pay attention to rules and regulations that form the structure of the educational institution. For example, the Swedish educational system requires that a student maintain a certain number of credits per semester in order to qualify for a study loan. On the other hand, the university’s state funding is based on how many students pass their exams. For the student, the credit requirement often leads to a strategic approach to learning governed by a wish to pass the test as the major goal. For the instructor, the funding rule compels her to organize the interpreted curriculum so that the content of the course becomes achievable within the course time limit and the level of achievement is measurable. Thus, the student and the instructor have a shared interest. We define these interests as the exchange value of education. However, both the instructor and the student have an interest in reaching a goal beyond the immediate satisfaction of obtained credits. This goal is about developing competence, capabilities, skills and insights held as important in higher education. We define these goals as use value of education.At a first glance one would tend to relate the exchange value of education with what has been defined as the surface approach to learning (Marton & Booth, 1997). The surface approach to learning focuses on what can be called the sign, for example, a text itself (ibid). This implies that memorization, replication and rote learning become the main approaches to learning. A student’s attitude rests on the belief that knowledge is to be declared as rather fixed answers and tested in terms of right and wrong. This is in contrast to the belief that knowledge is constructed through an understanding of complex phenomenon and concepts involving the act of relating previous knowledge and experiences with new knowledge. On the other hand, the concept of the deep approach to learning could easily be related to the use value of education since this approach focuses on what which is signified, for example, the meaning of a text. The deep approach to learning also focuses on using organizing principles to integrate ideas (Marton & Booth, 1997). Hence, this approach leads to a more durable and complex set of competencies, skills, and insights. However, under present conditions this approach might require a longer process, which might not be available within the existing institutional structures. Thus, we assert that, there are a bound to be consequences for higher education in terms of the quality of learning.In this paper, though, we are interested in understanding the dialectical relationship between use- and exchange value and the link to learning. Thus, we want to go beyond the immediate perception of the relationship between exchange value and surface learning, on the one hand, and use value and deep level learning, on the other. In this paper we ask the following two questions. What are the signs of use- and exchange value in communication between students and instructors in higher education? How are manifestations of use- and exchange value approached by students and instructors in higher education aiming at a deep approach to leaning? Thus, the purpose of the paper is to contribute to an understanding of the dialectical tension in the object of the activity of higher education and its relationship to forms of learning. With forms of learning we here refer to surface- and deep approaches to learning but we might also include expansive learning though that is not the main focus of this study.On an applied level, higher education institutions aiming at deep approach to learning and durable and complex competencies, skills, and insights should benefit from this study.

  • 4.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Växjö University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Education.
    A Changing Experience: communication and meaning-making in web-based teacher training2009Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This is a study of students’ meaning making in web-based higher education courses. Conditions for students meaning-making change when interaction technology is used to support educational practices. Widened Participation policy activities often use web-based programs to attract “new” groups of more experienced students. The study used a communicative approach and focused on how previous experiences influenced actions and meaning making when students encountered challenges related to course objectives. Mediated Discourse Analysis was used to analyse asynchronous communication in 10 groups during 18 weeks of a 4-year part-time distance education program, training childminders for a Bachelor of Education, specialising in early childhood.  Appearances of meaning-making were traced to changes and breaks in student communication and presented as themes of orientations of actions namely:  • participation, the manifestation of presence, engagement in course work and the creation of space for engagement  • positioning, the creation of a student identity, the organisation of work, and the construction of a group culture  • reference, the orientation actions took in a nexus of practices. Where did students go for examples and to challenge theoretical concepts? • changing experience is a collection of moments of reification, when students came to make realisations of relevance to subject and task.  This study tells an alternative story to research on web-based education stating difficulties to achieve in-depth communication. The mediated environment offered strength for meaning-making and knowledge building as time, in the opportunity to develop new perspective through thinking and in encountering concepts again and again. As numbers, in the necessary impact of other’s experiences. And as distance, provided by the shift of actions in asynchronous communication, forcing thoughts into written language and making them accessible for reflection and criticism. If we are serious about widening participation we should regard students not only as numbers but instead as a valuable resource that may contribute to change in education. In this context, the combination of new groups of students and web-based scenarios provides future avenues for an informed pedagogical approach to higher education.

  • 5.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of pedagogy.
    A student oriented course design model for higher education2017In: NERA 2017 Abstracts, 23-25 March 2017, Copenhagen, Denmark: Learning and education - material conditions and consequences, 2017, 124Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Research topic/Aim: This is a case study testing a model for designing courses and programs in Higher Education for changing, analysing and implementing student oriented course design. The model addresses processes necessary to activate to diminish the gap between what students bring to learning and course objectives.

    The model is the product of a fourVyear project with the aim to enhance teachers competences on student activity and support students’ knowledge building processes influencing goal fulfilment and completion rates. The model is now implemented also outside teacher training for independent courses in Pedagogy.

    Theoretical frameworks: The model is framed by theories of meaning making identifying three main areas of research in Higher Education Pedagogy important to address as didactic considerations when trying to make a stand against more deterministic and neoVliberal influences on education that view students as more passive recipients of knowledge. The three areas with consequences for student meaning making as course design are:

    • Student expectations and experiences

    • A multimodal turn

    • Knowledge as socially constructed

      Methodology/research design: This project is action research based in that sense that teachers have been researching their teaching practice constructing the preliminary empirical data (onVgoing project). GoalVfulfilment (retention rates), focusVgroups interview with students and survey data constitute this preliminary empirical data package. Courses studied are courses in preVschool teacher training (campus and flexible) and Pedagogy A (webVbased).

      Expected conclusions/Findings: Teaching today means spending more time geographically separated from students. We therefore need to create rich learning cultures to promote student activities, initiatives and meaning making processes. Previous research shows that students’ expectations and previous experience colour and orient their actions in a course environment. The design process therefore has to consider student attitudes to and previous expectation of content and higher education studies. At our disposal is a wide range of multimodal technology that should be used to keep student at task and not by teachers to produce knowledge object for consumption. These technologies should also be used for sharing, objectifying and discussing course content, decreasing a pedagogical distance.

      Here digital media and a careful communication strategy has been used to align student expectation with course managements and used for establishing an understanding for theories and common terms necessary as a foundation for reading course literature and passing exams. In one completely webVbased course 50% of the students passed the first exam compared to 29% of registered students before course development. Developed courses scored high among students in terms of stimulating creativity and critical thinking, feedVback, assessment supporting course aims and information during course.

    Relevance for Nordic Educational Research: This presentation wish to make a stand in favour of the concept of student oriented learning and not student centred learning. There is a difference between acting from students’ expectations and wishes and acting with student goal fulfilment in focus. A student oriented learning process in Higher Education, instead use what we know about how student learn to make sure that the learning environment offers these keyVcomponents.

  • 6.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of pedagogy.
    Arenas For Learning: Enhancing Student Interaction In Online Education2013Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 7.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health, Social Work and Behavioural Sciences, School of Education, Psychology and Sport Science.
    Designing for social: – the role of social in web-based learning environments2012In: DESIGNS FOR LEARNING 2012, 3rd International ConferenceExploring Learning Environments, 25-27 April 2012Copenhagen, Denmark: CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS / [ed] Rikke Ørngreen, 2012, 54-55 p.Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 8.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of pedagogy.
    Guiding principles for course design2016In: INTED 2016: The 10th annual International Technology, Education and Development Conference. / [ed] Chova, LG; Martinez, AL; Torres, IC, INTED , 2016, 6557- p.Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Guiding principles for course design

    This presentation focuses guiding principles and supporting structures fostering a learning culture with active students, better used teaching resources (including ICT) and a high degree of goal fulfilment within higher education. The principles have emanated of a three year pedagogical development program at the Linnaeus University in Sweden allowing teachers to research their own everyday practice to create learning environments better supporting students’ learning processes and being able to change learning cultures in a long time project.  A simple design model is developed and put into practice to help teachers struggling with teaching tasks everyday. The model could work as a planning and evaluating tool as well as a foundation for discussion teaching practices. 

     

    As educators in Higher Education (HE) we have a choice to either successfully supply students with what they are asking for or successfully design their learning processes. Taking the first road equals success and student satisfaction and risk getting stuck in short or narrow sighted solutions and quick fixes. Choosing the careful design perspective on the other hand acknowledges us as professionals in making informed didactical choices.

      Taking the consequences of living in a global and digitized society means including all means in this design task –thereby including ICT in our didactical considerations. The design concept here rests on research within three fields, i.e. student attitudes & expectations, multimodality & representations, and knowledge as socially constructed.  When the academic community challenges what technologies can do for them, digital technologies become knowledge technologies that “shape what is learned by changing how it´s learned. That means identifying where technology can make a difference. For this we need a framing, a sound foundation that identifies central and relevant theoretical concepts for students’ engagement in learning which serve as an aggregation of intellectual tools to understand and be better prepared to teach in a contemporary educational institution.

    Summing up:

    The presentation focuses guiding principles for course design and their theoretical foundation in HE- pedagogy. The principles have emanated of a three year pedagogical development program at the Linnaeus Univeristy in Sweden allowing teachers to research their own everyday practice to create learning environments better supporting students’ learning processes and being able to change learning cultures in a long time projekt.

     

     

     

     

  • 9.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Växjö University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Education. avdelningen för didaktik.
    Kan man vaccinera studenter mot utebliven återkoppling?: en utvärdering av distansutbildningsverksamhet vid Högskolan Dalarna2005Book (Other academic)
  • 10.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health, Social Work and Behavioural Sciences, School of Education, Psychology and Sport Science.
    Kan man vaccinera studenter mot utebliven återkoppling? En utvärdering av distansutbildningsverksamhet vid Högskolan i Dalarna”2005Report (Other academic)
  • 11.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health, Social Work and Behavioural Sciences, School of Education, Psychology and Sport Science.
    Mediated meaning in web-based educational practice2010Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    What happens in a scenario where higher education, cheered on by political grandiloquence, sets out to increase intake by using Interaction Technology (IT) to attract “new groups” of students? In the PhD project discussed here, I combine “new student groups”, “new technology” and “new ways” of distributing education and explore the communicative actions by students trying to handle socially and culturally rooted protocol in an educational web-based context.

    A still expanding international market for education has attracted representatives for ‘new technology’ outside academia. New actors in a field speak new ‘languages’. Actors’ perceptions of what kind of discursivity they are involved in will influence them when trying to make meaning or design a particular practise. From an intersubjective perspective the virtual learning environment is stripped of contextual clues, demanding of students to actively represent themselves and create an on-line identity. Students use their on-line identity to negotiate group culture and engage in the pursuit of meaning. I have studied the interaction between women students in a web-based educational context and focused on three processes: (i) positioning - when students - new to each other enter the stage; (ii) casting, the process of becoming a group and negotiating roles, and (iii) the process of meaning making related to course objectives.

    Theories on meaning making and digital environments often have a narrow approach on context and ascribes face-to-face meetings normativity for meaning making. When methodological terminology becomes too instrumental they do not serve as analytical tools and there is a call for presenting a more complex picture. Discourse analysis cannot capture these intersubjective and mediated processes. I have therefore added action as a main object of analysis through the use of mediated discourse analysis (MDA).

    My results call for a broadened discussion of “context” and “conditions” related to IT research and get rid of underlying assumptions of technology use as deterministic causing relationships. Affordances in the environment are instead related to changes in communication patterns with empowering effects as well as changed conditions for meaning making. Meaning making expands the idea of cognitive tools to also include social aspects of practice. To not just make room for, but also care for new groups in academia, it is time to design courses on the basis of what participants bring into context. Not by viewing participation as a matter of administrative access, but by embracing it’s constitutive dimension.

  • 12.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of pedagogy.
    Participating with Experience: A Case Study of Students as Co-Producers of Course Design2016In: Higher Education Studies, ISSN 1925-4741, E-ISSN 1925-475X, Vol. 6, no 1, 15-23 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Higher Education needs to handle a diverse student population. The role of student expectations and previous experience is a key to fully participate. This study investigates student meaning making and interaction in a course designed to stimulate student as co-creators of course content and aims. Results revealed that rich communication added structure for students, that open-ended design challenged student approaches and constructed students as subjects. Analysis was made using recorded webinars, asynchronous discussion forums and e-mails. Data was categorised as communicative actions based on their orientations in the course i.e. what further actions they provoked. Analysis was guided by theories on participation and framing (Wenger & Bernstein). The influence of dominating discourses for the didactics of HE risk excluding some perspectives and experiences when students’ experiences and expectations are not regarded as contributing to the meaning making of their own participating in academic educational practices. Finally, the study suggests that a move into web-based contexts more easily challenges students’ preconceptions of studying.

  • 13.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health, Social Work and Behavioural Sciences, School of Education, Psychology and Sport Science.
    Problematisk frånvaro av digital kompetens i lärarutbildningen2011In: Utbildning och Lärande / Education and Learning, ISSN 2001-4554, Vol. 5, no 1, 16-33 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Teachers as a profession share a responsibility that future generations develop a sustainable digital competence being able to criticize and analyse consequences of living and participating in a contemporary and future knowledge society. This study suggests that certain academic disciplinary cultures execute a buffering effect on the introduction of technology in the educational sphere and interferes with the question of responsibility. Ways to avoid such negative buffering effects could be to: (i) skip the use of the terms IT/ICT as associated with the handling of technology which give a mandate for academic disciplines not to consider other aspects of the growing information society for its related academic and professional practices, and (ii) to focus the internal practice in terms of the everyday work of university teachers. University teachers in this study hardly ever use digital media for didactical purposes. ICT destined projects instead often focus training teachers in their training practices. The gained knowledge and experience thereby follow the students out of higher education.

  • 14.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health, Social Work and Behavioural Sciences, School of Education, Psychology and Sport Science.
    Socialt prat i nätbaserad utbildning2011In: Mer om nätbaserad utbildning / [ed] Stefan Hrastinski, Lund: Studentlitteratur, 2011, 1:1, 147-159 p.Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 15.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of pedagogy.
    Students' web-based actions when linking theory and practice2013In: International Journal of Web Based Communities, ISSN 1477-8394, E-ISSN 1741-8216, Vol. 9, no 4, 448-464 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study used representational affordances of IT to trace meaning making as the semiotic actions of training teachers in a web-based educational practice. 18 weeks of asynchronous communications were analysed using Mediated Discourse Analysis. Results showed a process orientation in communication. Students were exposed to a variety of experiences and opinions, helping them to find ways to relate to theory. The link between theory and practice was helped by strategies as:

    • building upon the collective –from I to we
    • introducing a cultural or historical shift
    • making “different” known and shared by the group
    • revisiting earlier established concepts from the course

    Results point towards the importance to address design aspects of working with the impact of other’s represented experience and ‘distance’ as representations of actions providing distance to self, practice and thought as pedagogical aspects of the web based environment.

  • 16.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health, Social Work and Behavioural Sciences, School of Education, Psychology and Sport Science.
    Toward a broader understanding of social talk in Web-based courses2012In: Text & Talk, ISSN 1860-7330, E-ISSN 1860-7349, Vol. 32, no 3, 349-369 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The interactive potential of computer-mediated communication has proved more difficult to realize than expected. This study tries to break away from the normative status of speech underlining computer-mediated communication by asking how social talk is manifested in web-based learning environments. The asynchronous communication of 55 students during a study period of 18 weeks was studied using mediated discourse analysis. Students were training for pre-school teachers in 4-years program. Students’ ability to create a group culture seemed significant for how they developed group autonomy and were able to handle unexpected incidents or a loose framing. Communication was narrative and lengthy in character and trusts and confidences were dropped off as part of a constant construction of group culture. These students did not adopt or develop known means of compensating for the loss of non-verbal clues. There were indications of sharing private concerns and information from other practices in life as a conditional aspect of participation. When having trouble to cope, it was the youngest students who failed.

  • 17.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of pedagogy.
    Vad kan göra skillnad för studenter?: Om guidande principer och verktyg för kursdesign2015In: Symposium. Nystart Linné: Guiding principles and tools for course design., 2015Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 18.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    et al.
    Växjö University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Education. Avdelningen för didaktik.
    Ahlbäck, Tor
    Växjö University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Education. Avdelningen för didaktik.
    Collaboration as Quality Interaction in Web-based Learning2007In: Advanced Technology for Learning: Technology för Collaborative Learning, ISSN 1710-2251, Vol. 4, no 1Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Virtual learning environments supply us with new tools for learning. The conditions for communication are likely to affect the knowledge process. In this paper, we present the study of a collaborative knowledge process with the aim of identifying factors that can affect collaborative learning in a web-based environment. Underlining the study is an assumption that student teachers will be better equipped, if they have experienced and discussed methods of collaborative learning while in training. A tool for analysing the communication process in a knowledge production perspective was developed and used with a collaborative web-based method in a teacher-training programme. Results identified two critical factors affecting the level of collaboration connected to the knowledge process. Social interaction, to establish a group culture and the exchange of experiences, as a foundation for knowledge production is in this study a key factor for designing a web-based collaborative learning context. The insight into these processes is central for planning and choosing methods for collaborative courses, and the analysing tool can be used for evaluation of group work and assessments.

  • 19.
    Willén-Lundgren, Berit
    et al.
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of pedagogy.
    Reneland-Forsman, Linda
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of pedagogy.
    Värderelationell reflektion med stöd av digital spegling2017In: Utbildning och Lärande / Education and Learning, ISSN 2001-4554, ISSN 2001-4554, Vol. 11, no 1, 34-46 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
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