Learning Designs and pedagogical space/autonomy- escaping the straightjacket

Publikation: Konferencebidrag uden forlag/tidsskriftAbstraktForskning


Due to neoliberal ideologies, NPM, accountability systems, and market-oriented management of the public sector, there has been a political effort over the past decades to rationalise and streamline education; for example by making standards and formats for education and teaching courses in higher education. This has happened as part of a global competition for the best possible educational output for the least money possible (Biesta et al., 2015, 2011; Green, 2010; Mausethagen & Smeby, 2016). This international development has also taken place in the Danish education system, including University Colleges. Wanting to reduce costs is by no means new, nor that teachers share each other’s teaching plans in less formalised forms, but it might prove problematic when and if instructional/learning designs are formalised to a high degree and become standards rather than being created on a more voluntary basis and made flexible in relation to reusing.
Within a Nordic didactic tradition, teacher autonomy is given a very high value, and therefore there is reason to warn against the idea that teaching can be produced in packages that others can open and use directly in new contexts. On the other hand, there is also reason to address potential bias within learning designs. For example, that reusing learning designs is always a straitjacket, which requires that the design must be performed as it, is without the possibility of modification and context adaptation.
This paper draws on two completed research projects and one ongoing project in which we have taken a critical, but constructive view of learning designs. Our research interest has been to uncover the possibilities of utilising a design’s resources in the form of qualified pedagogical ideas and reflections on the part of the designers, but at the same time preserve a pedagogical space with the teachers who stand as those who have to use the design. This is a fundamental dilemma. On the one hand, a design must appear pedagogically well crafted and with well-communicated pedagogical instructions so that the designers’ competence can benefit the reusers. On the other hand, the design must not be too restrictive and dictating as this leaves no room for the reusing teachers’ pedagogical adaptation of the design to their own teaching context. Therefore, it is all about finding a balance. The question that we investigate in this paper is therefore: Which factors determine the extent to which a pedagogical space for the reuse of learning designs is achieved?
Publikationsdatoaug. 2023
StatusUdgivet - aug. 2023
BegivenhedECER 2023 - Glasgow University
Varighed: 22 aug. 202325 aug. 2023


KonferenceECER 2023
LokationGlasgow University


  • Læring, pædagogik og undervisning
  • learning designs