06 ONLINE 24 A, Paper Session
MeetingID: 895 6986 5031 Code: agG1is
Since the Covid-19 pandemic took its course, in the last two years universities and schools face constant changes concerning the way teaching and learning is made possible by using technology. The project started from contact restricted classroom-settings and students not being able to participate in class due to travel distance, illness, or quarantine measures. Problems arose regarding the organisation of teaching and learning to be more inclusive regardless of whether teachers and learners could be in the same room at a defined period of time. Taking a media educational view, we were looking for possible solutions resulting in a concept for collaborative media-based teaching and learning in hybrid settings.
Due to construction work at the University building the “MediaLab” was relocated and redesigned from scratch. The project team based the design on pedagogical considerations, one of them being Petko’s model of a media enhanced “learning context” (Petko 2014) enabling relations between teachers and learners, teachers and learning subjects as well as learners and content on different levels. For instance, interaction between teachers and learners is mediated by tools of communication and consulting, while the interaction between learners and content could be enabled by presentation media and media-based working material. Media in hybrid learning contexts takes up an essential role at the centre of successful interaction and engagement with the learning subject as well as with other learners and teachers. Thus, the Media Lab should serve as a digitally enhanced learning environment providing as many connections as possible.
For “hybrid learning” we found varying definitions. Hastie and colleagues refer to „blended synchronous learning“ between online and classroom contexts facilitating „[…] unlimited connectivity for teachers and students from any part of the world.” (Hastie et al. 2010, 10). Another definition by Bower and colleagues describes hybrid learning „where remote students participate in face-to-face classes by means of rich-media synchronous technologies such as video conferencing, web conferencing, or virtual worlds“ (Bower et al. 2014, 12). Both definitions require time-synchronous interaction between learners and teachers, and it is not specified whether participation also means active parts of online-learners. Caulfield adds: “a well-designed hybrid course is a joint and provocative exploration of the discipline by teacher and learner in which the roles of teacher and learner are fluid“ (Caulfield 2012, 4). This collaborative understanding displays more activity on the side of the learners.
Consequently, hybrid teaching and learning should consider how and where teachers and learners are situated. Such thoughts are also prevalent in the concept of „seamless learning“ reviving questions of what “seams” are (to be) removed (Wong and Looi 2011; Müller Werder and Erlemann 2020) in order to act flexibly on spatial and temporal a-synchronicity. Key element of hybrid teaching and learning is enabling active participation and engagement with the subject of learning through designing digitally enhanced learning environments, or “media contexts”. Models for digitally enhanced classrooms were developed by Himpsl-Gutermann and colleagues (Himpsl-Gutermann et al. 2017). They include six scenarios:
1 “Teacher in Classroom“: Recording teaching with stationary equipment
2 “Mobile Classroom“: Recording teaching with mobile equipment
3 “Flipped Classroom“: Providing instructional resources for asynchronous learning
4 “Student in Classroom“: students produce media in the classroom
5 “Live in Classroom“: Video stream out of the classroom
6 “Off the Classroom“: Projection of out-of-class video
A seventh scenario, called “Hybrid Classroom“ is developed within the project, integrating joint participation of online and face-to-face participants, live video and recording via stationary and mobile equipment, projection of teaching and learning activities in and outside the classroom, and collaboratively producing media learning products (e.g. audio, video, etc.).
Two research phases are paralleled within the project. First there is the development process, focusing on implementing technology for the planned scenarios. Methodologically this process is oriented towards action research and iterative loops of development, implementation, testing, feedback and optimisation (vgl. Coghlan and Brannick 2009). Within these processes different types of data are generated including sketches of the classroom and the placement of technical equipment, manuals of use (documents), participatory observation (partly video-based), transcription via Panopto (speech-to-text technology) and feedback-reflections of participants (teachers and learners). The data-set is analysed based on a reconstructive method of situational analysis (vgl. Clarke 2003) of the teaching-/learning context in the complementary research project focusing on the view of the participants (online and present) of the arrangement, technology, and perceived role of technical knowledge within the roles of teachers and learners. This includes a mapping of the digitally enhanced context following Clarke’s situational analysis (Clarke 2003). Mappings aim to depict how technology and digital enhancement facilitate and shape interactions in the learning process. Discursive rules and routines are identified especially at transitions between interactions within the classroom and with online participants, focussing on how relations are built between physical and online presence and how they differ. Social world/arena mapping makes actors and “nonhuman elements” (Clarke 2003) visible. In this case especially technology and digital elements affect negotiations between individual and collective actors. Lastly, positional maps show how positioning within discourses around the learning process are taken by different participants, focusing on the different possibilities of online and present learners and the role of the teacher in the process. The methodology aims at describing a new type of setting and scenarios complementing the above-mentioned media learning contexts. The analysis focuses on whether the learning environment’s design enables interaction between learners, teachers and learning subjects and how this context is co-constructed by different actors, media, and technology.
Results indicate a central role of technology and interestingly its invisibility when everything runs smooth and visibility as soon as there is trouble. Also, roles of teachers and learners are challenged. Learners for example rely on the teacher to facilitate interaction rather than contacting each other directly. This could be shown in one situation where the teacher leaves the room and mutes the microphone. Instead of taking a break, participants go on talking about the learning issue. The online participant could not take part in the conversation due to the muted audio. The online participant did not activate her microphone, even though she had the opportunity to do so. In her reflection notes after the session, she mentioned the scene. The online learner was aware of the missing participation opportunity, while for the present participants this went unnoticed. The situation indicates one finding of the project, that learners are not yet aware of their responsibility of including online participants into their social interaction in class. For hybrid teaching and learning to be successful, not only the four walls of the classroom are challenged, but traditional roles transcend due to the transmission of interaction from face-to-face towards digital contexts. Hybrid learning could then indicate not only chances, but also challenges for future learning and teaching, showing that integrating digital media into the classroom leads towards sharing responsibilities for the interaction with other learners, teachers and learning subjects. In the project learning processes on both sides, teachers and learners regarding the hybrid technology and its use, as well as learning contents can be reconstructed. Still, questions are left unanswered, whether all teachers and learners are able or willing to shift their roles and if it is necessary once technology is established and running.
Bower, Matt, Barney Dalgarno, Gregor Kennedy, Mark J. W. Lee, and Jacqueline Kenney. 2014. Blended Synchronous Learning: A Handbook for Educators. Sydney: Matthew Bower. Caulfield, Jay. 2012. How to Design and Teach a Hybrid Course: Achieving Student-Centered Learning through Blended Classroom, Online and Experiential Activities. Stylus Publishing, LLC. https://books.google.at/books?id=I44Ol5Vmn1MC&printsec=frontcover&hl=de. Clarke, Adele E. 2003. ‘Situational Analyses: Grounded Theory Mapping After the Postmodern Turn’. Symbolic Interaction - SYMB INTERACT 26 (November): 553–76. https://doi.org/10.1525/si.2003.26.4.553. Coghlan, David, and Teresa Brannick. 2009. Doing Action Research in Your Own Organization. 3rd ed. London: SAGE. Hastie, Megan, I–Chun Hung, Nian–Shing Chen, and Kinshuk. 2010. ‘A Blended Synchronous Learning Model for Educational International Collaboration’. Innovations in Education and Teaching International 47 (1): 9–24. https://doi.org/10.1080/14703290903525812. Himpsl-Gutermann, Klaus, Elfriede Berger, Sylvia Lingo, Hans-Peter Steinbacher, and Franz Reichl. 2017. ‘Didaktische Einsatzszenarien’. In Digitale Archivierung Und Bereitstellung von AV-Medien. Erfahrungen Und Praxisbeispiele Aus Dem Tertiären Bildungssektor, edited by Christian Berger, Elfriede Berger, Roman Ganguly, Ralf Hauber, Klaus Himpsl-Gutermann, Markus Hintermayer, Robert Kern, et al., 41–57. Norderstedt: Books on Demand GmbH. https://fnma.at/projekte/foerderprojekte/zentrale-archivierung-und-bereitstellung-von-audiovisuellen-lehrmaterialien-anforderungsprofil-und-systemvergleich-zabalas. Müller Werder, Claude, and Jennifer Erlemann, eds. 2020. Seamless Learning – lebenslanges, durchgängiges Lernen ermöglichen. Waxmann Verlag GmbH. https://doi.org/10.31244/9783830992448. Petko, Dominik. 2014. Einführung in die Mediendidaktik: Lehren und Lernen mit digitalen Medien. Pädagogik. Weinheim ua: Beltz. Wong, Lung-Hsiang, and Chee-Kit Looi. 2011. ‘What Seams Do We Remove in Mobile-Assisted Seamless Learning? A Critical Review of the Literature’. Computers & Education 57 (4): 2364–81. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2011.06.007.
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