Educational Design: Thinking & Practice

Background

The research area of educational design is broadly concerned with processes and products in the area of educational practices. Within this field education is understood as an activity that has to be intentionally designed. It draws inspiration from a variety of different areas such as design theory and methods, educational research, and technology-enhanced learning.

The motivation of the research unit is to establish a design culture in education that will enable intentional change of the present to create a desired future educational practice. This is done through taking advantage of the tools, methods and processes already established within the field of design.

The research unit carries out educational design research by applying concepts such as Design Based Research, Research through Design, Learning Design, Educational Technology, Design Patterns, and Curriculum Design.

There is a need for new educational designs, activities, practices, formats, technologies, curricula, spaces and institutions that cater for the changed landscape in which education finds itself today. To meet this challenge, we need to develop methods for intentional, reflective and meaningful educational design practice. Developing a design practice within education allows us to move from diagnosing to prescribing, and from analysing the present landscape to creating future landscapes.

Research objectives

The research unit engages with the above through a multi-pronged approach that works with the following research objectives:

  1. developing educational design thinking and practice,
  2. developing tools, methods and processes enabling researchers, teachers and students to become educational designers,
  3. creating new forms of educational designs in the form of e.g. patterns, units, courses or curricula,
  4. involving students and teachers as partners through the domain of participatory design cultures, and
  5. involving technology and media as a partner in education by designing new educational media and technology practices.

Research questions

  • How might we enable and support design thinking for teachers and students?
  • How might we create tools, methods and processes that enable teachers to become educational designers in their own practice?
  • How can education be designed in ways that keep the value and worth of the learner’s experience and interaction in the centre?
  • How can we design for dialogue and participation in education?
  • How can we create hybrid educational designs that allow participation across institutional boundaries?
  • How can courses be designed to support different learning objectives and levels of participation?
  • How might we design educational formats that enable interaction between students and society?

Participants

 

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