Participating with Experience—A Case Study of Students as Co-Producers of Course Design

  •  Linda Forsman    


Higher Education (HE) needs to handle a diverse student population. The role of student expectations and previous experience is a key to fully participate. This study investigates student meaning making and interaction in a course designed to stimulate student as co-creators of course content and aims. Results revealed that rich communication added structure for students, that open-ended design challenged student approaches and constructed students as subjects. Analysis was made using recorded webinars, asynchronous discussion forums and e-mails. Data was categorised as communicative actions based on their orientations in the course i.e., what further actions they provoked. Analysis was guided by theories on participation and framing (Wenger & Bernstein). The influence of dominating discourses for the didactics of HE risk excluding some perspectives and experiences when students’ experiences and expectations are not regarded as contributing to the meaning making of their own participating in academic educational practices. Finally, the study suggests that a move into web-based contexts more easily challenges students’ preconceptions of studying.

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