UNDERSTANDING DIGITAL LEARNING PROCESS

S. Sirkemaa1, H. Varpelaide2

1University of Turku (FINLAND)
2Satakunta University of Applied Sciences (FINLAND)
Information technology provides opportunities to learning anytime and anywhere. Technical advancements are applied to a rich variety of purposes in different fields and industries. Digitalization has an important role also in academic institutions and learning processes. There are plenty of ways how technology is being used in teaching situations, ranging from completely digital courses and modules to traditional lecturing where the role of technology is minimal. Technology may be in a supportive role, or it can be a critical tool in the learning process. Furthermore, technology is used in learning in many ways, even during one single course.

In this article we discuss the role of technology in learning, in different processes and in learning itself. We base our findings on practices found in Scandinavian universities. In this context information technology has an important role both in direct classroom teaching, individual learning at home and in group work assignments, for example. However, technology provides added value also in back-office. We highlight the importance of administrative processes in educational institutes, here information technology is in a role where it is a vital part of many functions and processes which ultimately support learning process.

The impact of information technology is significant in education – it gives possibilities to completely rethink teaching methods and roles. At the same time, administrative processes can be streamlined to better support the learning process.