two school girls with a tablet

Digital Tools and Digital Competence in Preschool and School Teaching

We conduct research on what happens and what becomes possible when digital tools are used in preschool-class and school teaching, as well as on how such use affects preschool-children’s and pupils’ digital competence. Our research is carried out in close collaboration with practising teachers. Furthermore, the research team has close ties to the university’s teacher training programmes.

Our research

The transdisciplinary research group Digital Tools and Digital Competence in Preschool and School Teaching was established with the support of the Board of Teacher Education’s strategic investment in research on digital tools and digital competence in preschool and school teaching, during the period 2021–2023.

The research group is moulded around the theoretical concept of Design for Learning (DfL), according to which teaching and learning is to be seen as a form of multimodal design: the teacher stages, or designs, learning activities, thus giving the pupils access to different resources that enable meaning making; and the pupils in turn re-design their learning relative to their own circumstances, and based on their previous knowledge, interests, etc.

As part of the DfL framework, a model – Learning Design Sequence (LDS) – has been developed for teachers to use to plan and evaluate their teaching, and for researchers to use as an analytical tool in research studies. The research group is currently running three studies in which the use of digital animations in the teaching and learning of different subjects is studied, based on LDS.

Study 1

Study 1 contributes knowledge about what happens, and what becomes possible, when pupils in school year 2 create multimodal texts together in small groups, by studying the process in which pupils transform a story written by themselves, by hand, into a multimodal digital text. In this study, action cameras are used in a school environment to capture children’s perspectives on the process in which they create a multimodal digital text together with others.

Main project managers: Marina Wernholm and Kristina Danielsson.

Study 2

Study 2 focuses on how the creation of digital animations as part of working on a problem-solving task enables six-year-olds learning of combinatorics. The study is based on previous research on the same task and contributes knowledge about how children interact and create meaning in the process of creating multimodal representations of their solutions.

Main project managers: Andreas Ebbelind and Hanna Palmér.

Study 3

Study 3 focuses on how teachers may enable meaning making in science education by using different semiotic resources, such as physical models, role playing, and animations. The focus lies on what kind of learning is made possible when six-year-olds are working with creating their own digital animations of the molecular structure of water and the different phases of water, as well as on what signs of learning emerge in their creation of digital animations.

Main project managers: Emelie Patron and Marina Wernholm.

Staff

Digital Tools and Digital Competence in Preschool and School Teaching features researchers from the following other research groups omfattar forskare från följande andra forskargrupper: