About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2019 Proceedings
Publication year: 2019
Pages: 3888-3897
ISBN: 978-84-09-14755-7
ISSN: 2340-1095
doi: 10.21125/iceri.2019.0984
Conference name: 12th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 11-13 November, 2019
Location: Seville, Spain
The growing importance of service sector emphasizes service innovation that is seen vital in the creation of new service offerings, service business models, and service processes in both private and public sector. In order to identify new opportunities and design service innovations, new capacity building is needed in the rapidly changing service business environment. Consequently, this requires developing novel pedagogical approaches and learning methods in higher education. One could be work-oriented project learning, which seems to be an appropriate method for accumulating new competencies and working life experiences.

The purpose of this paper is to deepen understanding of work-oriented project learning in master’s degree studies in digital service design. The paper aims to develop a pedagogical model describing work-oriented project learning in higher education based on the work-oriented project learning model by Upola (2019) and pedagogic Learning by Developing (LbD) model by Laurea. The work-oriented project learning is “a method for cooperative learning and learning by doing in which knowhow is acquired under the guidance of a teacher in authentic learning environments” (Upola 2019). Respectively, LbD is based on learning through research and developing (R&D). According to the both models, expertise and experiences are shared between teachers and students as well as project partners and other stakeholders. The teacher members of the project team take part by providing their expertise to steer the progress of the work and, at the same time, the progress of learning. The LbD model describes the theoretical pedagogical framework. However, as such, it does not provide conceptual tools or operational model to analyze project learning. Upola’s model could provide conceptual tools for modeling project learning also in higher education. The research data was collected in two digital service design cases during a project called The Finnish Design Academy (FDA). The research data consists of the curriculum implementation plan, teacher diaries, students self-assessment and feedback, as well as assessment of the study unit in 2019. The case study research was selected because it investigates a contemporary phenomenon within its life context and it uses multiple sources of evidence.

The structure of this paper is as follows. First, it discusses service design and digital service design in higher education. Second, the LbD model by Laurea is introduced, the existing work-oriented project learning model by Upola (2019) is presented and it’s suitability for higher education is being considered. Also, the paper briefly explains the EU’s standard, the EQF framework, that specifies the quality of education. Third, it presents the development of the pedagogical model of work-oriented project learning in higher education. Fourth, the paper presents the results of the development work and finally, it discusses the main contributions.
Work-oriented project learning, digital service design, digital service, higher education.