Digital technology has a lot of potential in terms of teaching and learning. However, survey studies have provided mixed evidence on the impact of digital technology on educational outcomes. The correlation between students’ reported use of digital technology and achievement has continually appeared to be of no significance or even negative significance. Research aims to understand and resolve this discrepancy between potentials and survey outcomes. The group’s research focuses on how learning in digitally enriched environments is experienced.
Learning culture and practices have changed dramatically during the last decade. In practice, students use computers and digital tools for learning daily or even during every lesson, particularly at secondary and upper secondary schools. Therefore, enquiring students about the extent to which they have used digital tools at school is insufficient. Methodological development is required. In coordination with research group members and collaborators, we analyse how students (emotionally) experience learning in digitally enriched environments. I have been actively developing several methods for capturing students’ learning experiences.
Digital learning is not primarily educational technology research; it focuses on digital disciplinary practices with high epistemic quality. The aim of digital tools is not to learn old content easily but to learn new content. Digital tools change not only pedagogy but also the goals and contents of learning. This fundamental change can be accidental or deliberate. Design-based research and teacher–researcher partnership are needed to promote deliberate change. With teachers, environments with digital tools that enable students to achieve their goals with high epistemic quality and are relevance to them can be created. Global warming, pandemics and mass extinction are examples of the problems that future generations need to tackle; thus, sustainable way of living is encouraged. This change requires sustainability inventions. European policy documents emphasise the possibilities of digitalisation. Therefore, high epistemic–quality practices must be established at schools. In research projects, for example the circular economy and UN2030, sustainable development goals are starting points to engage students to learn to make a contribution.
The research group aims to bring epistemically high-quality digital disciplinary practices in classrooms. Background is in science education. Thus, it is acknowledged that each discipline has its originality, and collaboration with discipline specialists is necessary to design high epistemic quality digital practices.
The scope of digital learning is wide. Therefore, collaborating with several research groups within a faculty research community is highly beneficial. This community includes Maker culture and STEAM education as well as other local and international research groups.
Research group is part of Maker@steam research community.