1 University for Continuing Education Krems (AUSTRIA)
2 Berlin School of Economics and Law (GERMANY)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2009 Proceedings
Publication year: 2009
Pages: 5104-5111
ISBN: 978-84-613-2953-3
ISSN: 2340-1095
Conference name: 2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 16-18 November, 2009
Location: Madrid, Spain
Web 2.0 has increasingly been adopted in education, which is evident from the sharp increase of scientific attention given to this field. It is also established that interactive and playful components may foster the learning process and may provide motivating learning experiences. However, the professional deployment of innovative, technology-supported learning scenarios lags behind this development. Furthermore, the varying approaches of girls and boys towards new technologies have found little consideration in the pedagogical context.

The research project "female" is devoted to this theme: fe|male places Web2.0 techologies in education in the center of the research focus. These technologies are analyzed under the aspect of gender and also in relationship to their didactical deployment within the framework of a gender-sensitive academic education. A key aspect of the project is that the lived-in world of the youths is the point of departure. Popular internet activities such as the social interaction though the networks MySpace, Twitter, SchülerVZ or Flickr, but also the production of content within a community serve as potential starting points for the development of future technology-supported learning scenarios in schools.

“Fe|male” pursues the following goals: to explore and to develop educational programs with a focus on gender aspects and to hereby contribute that girls also become interested in technical applications, while taking into account their skills, competencies and content preferences. This is based on the assumption that Web 2.0 technologies, which comprise the core ideas of the web, namely user-friendliness, standardization, participation and re-utilization will increasingly gain importance and might be referred to as the “passage point” of the technology-gender-discourse. The recent impulses emanating from Web 2.0 might contain the potential to ‘genderize’ the until now male-oriented technology design. Secondly, students are integrated into the entire research process. The project takes place in collaboration with three partner schools in Austria and Germany.

Based on young people’s media-centered lived-in world, within the "female" project, Web 2.0 applications were analyzed in terms of their feasible deployment in teaching. The selection of the educational scenarios was based on the expressed interest of the participating students of the partner schools and was established during the initial project phase by means of workshops. In a second phase (spring term 2009), the applications were implemented within the project works at the various partner schools and were evaluated in a formative manner by the participating students and teachers. The main results of this evaluation will be presented at the conference.
technology supported learning, gender, participatory design.