Special section of BJET

Call for Papers: Special section of BJET on Hybrid Learning Spaces – Design, Data, Didactics


  • Abstracts July 31st direct to anatco@tauex.tau.ac.il 
  • Submissions deadline October 1st
  • Acceptance deadline 14th February 2020
  • Publication May 2020

Guest editors
Dr Anat Cohen, Tel Aviv University, Israel
Dr Rikke Toft Nørgård, CUDIM, Aarhus University, Denmark
Dr Yishay Mor, MEITAL, Israel
Christian Köppe, Utrecht University, Netherlands

The spaces in which we teach and learn are changing. Technology is permeating physical spaces, augmenting and enhancing learning experiences. At the same time, mobile and pervasive internet-connected technology (IoT) creates interfaces between virtual spaces and real-world phenomena and create a data shadow for our actions in the physical world. These dynamics gave rise to a growing presence of hybridity: the blurring of boundaries between distinct contexts of learning and activity, and the unexpected interleaved experiences they engender.

Arguably, hybrid learning spaces drive a change that goes beyond the locus of learning. A hybrid pedagogy fundamentally rethinks our conception of place. Hybridity is multidimensional: it concerns the interleaving of formal and informal social structures of learning, the combination of physical and digital tools mediating individual’s interaction with the world and society, and more. Education systems are beginning to recognise the potential of hybrid learning spaces in promoting significant learning, and increasingly use pedagogical hybrid learning models. Recent work has begun exploring the nature of hybridity from an educational design perspective.

Hybrid learning spaces open opportunities and pose challenges to designers of learning experiences. Apart from the complexity of combining multiple modalities to achieve effective synergies, these spaces have a novel quality: activities within them generate data, which can be used to monitor individual and social learning processes, and potentially feed back into them, to enable “double loop learning”: awareness and control of the process of learning and teaching itself. Recent years have witnessed a growing interest in the promise of educational data science (EDS), a term coalescing learning analytics, artificial intelligence and educational data mining. In particular, there is an emerging recognition of the valuable intersection between EDS and educational design. While the tradition of EDS originated in the study of virtual learning environments, recently we see first advances into its use in physical environments. However, although the correlation between physical space design and educational effect is well established, Learning space research is a relatively new field of study that seeks to inform the design, evaluation and management of learning spaces and EDS has not yet ventured into this domain.

Along with the opportunities that arise from these hybrid learning spaces, there are issues that require an in-depth discussion among the community of researchers, developers, and practitioners in the field. While some of these issues are well understood, others are only beginning to be explored. For example:

● Personalisation and collaboration: hybrid learning spaces bring together learners with different constraints, agendas, assumptions, and expectations. Some might be co-located, some might be remote in time and place. How do we cater to such diverse and ill-defined cohorts? How do we leverage this diversity to create effective and powerful learning experiences?

● Ownership and empowerment: when we mix learning contexts, e.g. a curricular course and a MOOC, who sets the learning objectives? Who is responsible for monitoring achievement?

● Representation and interpretation: How do we map the data we collect to complex learning dynamics? How do we avoid the “streetlight effect”, of valuing what we can measure rather than measuring what we value? How do we derive insights from data, and present them in such a way that will assist learners, teachers, and administrators?

● Ethics: what are the risks and consequences of collecting and manipulating data about learners and learning environments? How do we draw the line between assessment, evaluation and surveillance? What are the appropriate modes of behaviour in hybrid learning spaces? Moreover, what is the purpose of education in hybrid learning spaces, where learners come from divergent backgrounds and with different aims?

We are seeking submissions that contribute to a design discourse: design as a practical approach to shaping the future and design as a scientific paradigm, drawing on the traditions of educational design research and utilising canonical design representations such as design principles and design patterns.