Centre for Technology Enchanced Learning
Department of Educational Research, County South, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YD, UK
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Educational Research > Centre for Technology Enhanced Learning > Research themes > Learning using digital technologies across formal and informal settings

Learning using digital technologies across formal and informal settings

Research theme

Boys using laptopAt one time it was necessary to carry work items between one learning setting and another – from school to home, and back again. Digital technologies, and particularly online technologies, have meant that many elements of work can now be accessed from either place.

Learners can now start work at home, searching for information or completing online tasks, can save elements, and these can be accessed at school. Learners can continue to work on items at school, and teachers can select items to share and discuss with classes or groups of learners. Teachers are recognising that their practices are changing as a result; some teachers now ask learners to do more research at home, and discuss in school those elements that have been started at home.

A key early publication by Don Passey that highlighted the importance of these shifts is: Developing Teaching Strategies for Distance (Out-of-School) Learning in Primary and Secondary Schools (2001). A more recent (2010) report by Don Passey, that shows how learners at young ages are being involved in learning practices across formal and informal settings, is an Independent Evaluation of the Implementation of the Learning Platform LP+ across Schools in Wolverhampton.

Don Passey has also written about the importance of these practices for parents in: Technologies involving parents and guardians with their children’s learning where he suggests that “The evidence that we have currently suggests that in the future we should explore to a much greater extent the ways that learning activities can be provided and described, so that parents and children are supported through appropriate access and descriptions of how to use ‘artefacts’ and ‘scaffolding’. Although there is evidence that family members, parents, grandparents and siblings can be involved in supporting and encouraging children with their learning, we need to explore the ways that different family members and friends can become involved, and the important roles of lifelong and intergenerational learning, as well as the roles of fathers and paternal role models.” (p.476)

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New Taipei City, Taiwan
10-12 December 2014

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