Author: REUNI+D Artículos
Engagement with Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) is reflected in the manifest behavior of students with the use of technologies, as well as by cognitive and motivational factors that favor ICT-mediated activities. Knowing some of the factors that influence this engagement is a tool for the design of resources and activities that improve student learning.
In times like these we are going through, with the questioning of gender equality, macho attacks, sexting, access to digital pornography, etc., among young people, it is vitally important to understand how the subjectivities and gender identities of adolescents are built in the digital environments in which they move. This is the purpose of the EDIGA research project (Entornos Digitales e Identidades de Género en la Adolescencia – Digital Environments and Gender Identities in Adolescence), funded by the Spanish Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities (PID2019-108221RB-I00). It aims to analyse and understand the role that digital environments play in the process of constructing gender identities at this stage of development in different socio-cultural contexts.
It has become a cliché to point to the widening gap between the forms of communication that students develop in their personal lives and those required by their teachers. The exciting work carried out by Cope and Kalantzis (2000), members of the New London Group, summarized in the Pedagogy of Multiliteracies, mentioned this gap almost thirty years ago. In 1994, a group of ten academics held a series of meetings in New Hampshire, USA, in a hotel room called New London. These meetings claimed for a change in educational institutions to prepare students to navigate, produce and critically interpret emerging discourses in an increasingly diverse and complex world with increasingly sophisticated modes of communication.
Even before the school closures in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, but especially since then, digital educational platforms have burst into the classrooms of schools in different parts of the world. In this context, large digital platform providers such as Google, Amazon or Microsoft have demonstrated an efficient capacity to respond to a situation that exceeded the ability of many public administrations to deal with the sudden digitisation of educational activities. However, the entry of these and other corporations (also known as BigTech) into our education systems had been years in the making.
It is obvious that research is key to improving education, but how to ensure that this research has a real transfer and impact on educational contexts does not seem to be such a simple task. We raise this concern in the research group every time we start a new project: how to shorten the distance that separates the University and the School, seeking to reduce the existing gaps between the observer and the observed (Sancho-Gil & Correa-Gorospe, 2019).
From ICUFOP we have always been very respectful of the ethical considerations of research. Informed consent at the beginning, negotiation in the process and the return of reports in the final phase, but we were observing how this way of proceeding did not eliminate the distance between the research team and the team of teachers who were involved in the research we were conducting.
For this reason, for the development of the projects in which we are currently involved, NOMADIS and PedaLAB, we considered the possibility of exploring other forms of research.
A group of colleagues from different national and international universities, who are concerned about opening classrooms to collaborative work with schools and other non-formal educational organisations, have been weaving a lively and passionate debate for almost two years. Being part of an educational innovation project brought us together. This project was aimed to think about how to advance university teaching in relation to collaborative experiences outside the university classroom. The aim was to give meaning to academic and experiential knowledge crossed by a narrative process of learning and evaluation.
Social laboratories, as spaces for socio-educational experimentation, have become one of the main mechanisms for innovation nowadays. In this framework, medialabs emerge as a type of laboratory focused on experimentation with technologies and media and evolve, with the development of the digital society, into laboratories of citizen mediation and social innovation.
The educational reform, which began at the end of 2020 with the approval of the LOMLOE (Organic Law 3/2020, of December 29, which modifies Organic Law 2/2006, of May 3, on Education) continues its journey by addressing at the beginning of this year 2022 one of the issues that generates the greatest expectation among the educational community: the reform of the teaching profession. In accordance with the planned calendar, in the first months of the year the Ministry of Education will present a proposal that will cover, among other issues, those related to initial teacher training. Presumably, this reform will lead to a review of initial teacher training programs by universities, which will have to accommodate them to the resulting renewed framework of competences and contents.
Learning in the context of the digital age is closely linked with the overabundance of information, with the speed and immediacy of access to data and with the variety of content that we can find on the Internet. In this panorama of constant flow and data storage, the concept of “Big Data” was born.
The DigiCraft program is an initiative of Vodafone Spain Foundation that involves the participation of certain members of the GITE-USAL group of the University of Salamanca. After more than a year working on the design of the program, it was implemented in 2020 in several schools and educational support classrooms across Spain. DigiCraft is a solid teaching proposal aimed at training the digital competences of Spanish children aged 6 to 12.