Conceptualising case studies: What are the important elements
The Kaleidoscope1 Jointly Executed Integrating Research Project (JEIRP) on Conditions for Productive Networked Learning Environments is developing and elaborating conceptual understandings of Computer Supported Collaborative Learning (CSCL) emphasizing the use of cross-cultural comparative approaches of case studies in different concrete higher educational settings and existing practices. The analyses are based in a socio-cultural approach in a broad sense (Engestrøm (1987), Wenger (1998), Dirckinck-Holmfeld and Fibiger (2002)) and are concerned with the following aspects and objects of study: Pedagogical design and the dialectics of the digital artefacts, the concept of collaboration, ethics/trust, identity and the role of scaffolding of networked learning environments. The JEIRP is motivated by the fact that many networked learning environments in various European educational settings are designed without a deep understanding of the pedagogical, communicative and collaborative conditions embedded in networked learning. Despite the existence of good theoretical views pointing to a social understanding of learning, rather than a traditional individualistic and information processing approach, these ideas seem to have had very little impact both among designers and within the higher education community. The perspective of the theoretical work is therefore to inform design. Design understood as ?taking the system, its user, and the context all together? (Winograd 1996, xvi). This process implies transforming the listed study objects into knowledge objects informed by the theoretical standpoint/approach and the empirical studies of the JEIRP.
Theoretical Framework on Selected Core Issues on Conditions for Productive Learning in Networked Learning Environments, 2004