GUIDING PRINCIPLES FOR COURSE DESIGN

L. Reneland-Forsman

Linnaeus University (SWEDEN)
This presentation focuses guiding principles and supporting structures fostering a learning culture with active students, better used teaching resources (including ICT) and a high degree of goal fulfilment within higher education. The principles have emanated of a three year pedagogical development program at the Linnaeus University in Sweden allowing teachers to research their own everyday practice to create learning environments better supporting students’ learning processes and being able to change learning cultures in a long time project. A simple design model is developed and put into practice to help teachers struggling with teaching tasks everyday. The model could work as a planning and evaluating tool as well as a foundation for discussion teaching practices.

As educators in Higher Education (HE) we have a choice to either successfully supply students with what they are asking for or successfully design their learning processes. Taking the first road equals success and student satisfaction and risk getting stuck in short or narrow sighted solutions and quick fixes. Choosing the careful design perspective on the other hand acknowledges us as professionals in making informed didactical choices.

Taking the consequences of living in a global and digitized society means including all means in this design task –thereby including ICT in our didactical considerations. The design concept here rests on research within three fields, i.e. student attitudes & expectations, multimodality & representations, and knowledge as socially constructed. When the academic community challenges what technologies can do for them, digital technologies become knowledge technologies that “shape what is learned by changing how it´s learned. That means identifying where technology can make a difference. For this we need a framing, a sound foundation that identifies central and relevant theoretical concepts for students’ engagement in learning which serve as an aggregation of intellectual tools to understand and be better prepared to teach in a contemporary educational institution.