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  • 1.
    Granklint Enochson, Pernilla
    et al.
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Sjöberg, Jeanette
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Johnsson, Annette
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    From process to a changed practice - How research questions are processed in a collaborative project2019In: NERA 2019: Education in a Globalized World, 2019, p. 31-32Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In 2017, a regional cooperation project was initiated with four municipalities and Halmstad University, called From Great to Excellence (FGTE), that aimed at reducing the gap between children/pupils capacity and performance. The project is planned to run for five years, and participants are persons active in schools and preschools at different levels within the school practice. Within the FGTE project, the participants perform different development projects in cooperation across the municipal boundaries, where they act as critical friends for each other in order to drive each project forward. Parallel with these activities, follow-up research on the project is conducted that focuses on different parts of the collaborative process. In this study we have concentrated on the participants' work with their respective research processes. The overall aim is to investigate the way in which research questions- and the ability to answer these - are developed by the participants through collaborative projects across municipal boundaries. The question we ask is "How does a (research-) question change through a collaborative process?" School development projects are carried out both at national and international level (e. g. Sales, Moliner & Amat, 2017; Adolfsson & Håkansson, 2015). In this study, the focus is both on regional cooperation and more specifically on the research questions of the participating groups.

    Theoretical framework

    The theoretical framework in this study is situated within the socio-cultural field, since much of the focus is around the collaboration between the participants. Conversation is an arena for developing knowledge and by supporting and challenging each other's pronounced thoughts, prerequisites for development of knowledge are given (Vygotsky, 1978).

    Methodological design

    The empirical material for the present study consists partly of the work material from a workshop where the participants' research questions were processed, partly by the participants' final products at the end of their development projects, which was a project report and a poster per project group. The material has mainly been analyzed based on a content analysis perspective (Danielsson, 2017; Denzin & Lincoln, 2003).

    Expected conclusions/findings

    The analysis is not yet complete, but preliminary results show that the research questions in the projects are not fully answered by the participants. On the other hand, the research questions seems to become more sharp when people from other municipalities are involved in working with the them. It also appears to be problematic to relate to overall, relatively abstract questions, and to make them tangible to their own school practice.                     

    Relevance to Nordic educational research

    Through this study, we want to highlight the potential for improvement work in preschool and school practice which lies in developing school activities through a regional cooperation project. This, we mean, are of utmost relevance to Swedish/Nordic as well as international research fields within education.

    References

    Adolfsson, C-H., & Håkansson, J.  (2015). Lärande skolor och förskolor i Kalmar kommun - Forskning och lokalt skolutvecklingsarbete i samspel. Rapport. Linnéuniversitet

    Danielsson, E. (2017). Vetenskaplig teori och metod: från idé till examination inom omvårdnad. Henricson, M. (red.) (Andra upplagan). Lund: Studentlitteratur AB.

    Denzin,  N.  K.,  &  Lincoln,  Y.  S.  (Eds.).  (2003).  Collecting  and interpreting  qualitative  materials (2nd  ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE

    Vygotsky, L. (1978). Mind in society: The development of higher psychological processes. M. Cole, Ed.Cambridge: Harvard University Press.

    Sales, A., Moliner, L., & Amat, A. F. (2017). Collaborative professional development for distributed teacher leadership towards school change. School Leadership & Management Formerly School Organisation. VOL. 37, NO. 3, 254–266

  • 2.
    Johnsson, Annette
    et al.
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Granklint Enochson, Pernilla
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Sjöberg, Jeanette
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Transfer of Knowledge from Group Work to Individual Level in a Professional Learning Context2019In: WG 01. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations, 2019Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    That educational systems the world over recognise the importance of theteacher is often evident by the resources spent on teacher capacitybuilding. The issues have frequently been about building an effectivemodel and mechanism that would develop and enhance the teachers’capacity and provide avenues for professional development.

    In this study we investigate whether knowledge acquired in acollaboration context, is perceived by the individual group member astransferable into his or hers day-to-day school development work.

    The study at hand is conducted within a regional collaboration projectbetween four municipalities and a university in Sweden. The fourmunicipalities agreed on a number of priority professional researchareas, where they merge, and to use each other as critical friends inthe development work. During the meetings of the collaboration project,participants from different levels and areas in the education sector inrespective municipality, act as critical friends to one another ingroups in order to drive the projects within the professional researchareas forward. Researchers from the university provide the participantsguidance in research skills and methods in order to strengthen thescientific base for professional development work in preschools and schools.

    A general assumption is that by working in groups, the group members areinvolved in collaboration which can assist them in a number of ways;e.g. generate strategies (Author, 2009) as well as better problemsolving and learning outcomes than individual work (Barron, 2000;McConnell, 2000; 2005). Even so, group work is supported by research asbeneficial for problem solving, development of critical thinking andcommunication skills (McConnell, 2000; 2005) we are interested inwhether knowledge acquired and utilized within group work in one contextis transferable into another context, although similar. This leads us toan important concept in the social constructivist theory, namelytransfer or transfer of knowledge. The concept focuses on how and if anindividual uses and transmits his or her ideas about a phenomenon fromone context to another (Mayer, 2002; Salomon & Perkins, 1989; Spiro, Collins, Thota & Feltovich, 2003). On this basis, this study concernsparticipants’ perception of utilization of research methodology in groupwork in relation to their perception of their utilization of researchmethodology in their own practice. According to Hasselhorn and Mähler(2000), it is possible to distinguish between specific and non-specifictransfer. Specific transfer involves the transfer of special factualknowledge while non-specific transmission refers to the transfer ofoverall principles or strategies to new contexts.

    The authors also distinguish between positive and negative transmissiondepending on whether transmission is facilitated or is inhibited, aswell as on proximal and distal transfer depending on whether thesituation requires a higher or lower transfer need (Hasselhorn andMähler, 2000; Author, 2012). When we learn something that is repeatedrelatively often and thus automated, a "low-road" transmission canoccur. In the case of high-road transmission, it requires more abstractthinking to transfer ideas or concepts from one situation to another(Salomon and Perkins, 1989). A further distinction can be made betweenhorizontal and vertical transmission (Schönborg & Bögeholtz, 2009).Horizontal transfer is defined as the ability to transfer performancesbetween different contexts but at the same level of organization.Vertical transmission, on the other hand, aims at the ability totransfer performances between different organizational levels.

    Following the theoretical assumptions outlined above, the question weask in this study is “How is transfer of knowledge from group work toown practice perceived by participants participating in a project onstrengthening organizational development on a scientific basis?”

    Methodology, Methods, Research Instruments or Sources Used in order to answer the research question regarding how the participantsin the project, described above, perceived whether the knowledgeacquired in groups in a professional training context could be utilizedinto their own school context, a questionnaire containing 19 questionswas handed out to the participants, each question with a Likert scale.The questionnaires were distributed to the 57 participants that werepresent at the final meeting of the project cycle’s first year, andmanually collected. This counts for about 65-70 percent of the totalnumber of participants in the project.The questionnaire contains questions concerning the respondent’s ownperception regarding: the individual’s relation to development work intheir daily work, the individual’s knowledge progress regarding researchskills, the process of the group work, and the collaboration model. Thelatter referring to the model of host versus critical friends in projectwork. The questionnaires were analyzed with SPSS factor analysis inorder to detect potential underlying variables.The participants of the project were divided into 12 groups, four groupsper school-level. Each group comprised of a host from respectivelymunicipality. The municipality took responsibility for the formulationof the professional research question, and the remaining members of thegroup, which all came from other municipalities, acted as criticalfriends in order to develop and process the research question.

    Conclusions, Expected Outcomes or Findings although a generalisation of the study’s results may be considereddoubtful, it is important and relevant to critically discuss thefindings in a broader perspective. As earlier studies show similarities between issues of transfer of knowledge (Argote, Ingram, Levine,Moreland, 2000; Spiro, Collins, Thota & Feltovich, 2003) it isreasonable to suggest that the findings in this paper also relates to abroader, international perspective.Based on the factor analysis a strong negative relationship was foundbetween the individual’s perception of the group’s increased use ofresearch methodology and their own increased ability to use researchmethodology in their own practice. Additionally there was also anegative relationship between the individual’s perception of theresearch question’s domination in group discussions and theiropportunity to reflect on their own practice. This may imply that theparticipant’s own learning, relating to their own practice, has been putback while working with development issues not pertinent to their owncontext. This concerns the concept of knowledge transfer, which haspreviously been addressed; that knowledge relating to one context cannotautomatically assumed being transferred into another context.The results display a clear contradiction between the group’s and theindividual’s utilization and development of research methodologyrelating to respective professional research question.This pinpoints anincongruity between group learning and development regarding researchskills and the individual’s perception of the relevance of these skillsin his or her own practice.The results raise an important question; how should capacity building beorganized in order to enable individuals to transfer knowledge andskills development from one context to another? This question ispertinent in all training contexts, in continuing professionaldevelopment as well as in teacher education, in a European as well as ina global context as the introduction highlights.

    ReferencesArgote L., Ingram P., Levine J. M., Moreland R. L (2000). KnowledgeTransfer in Organizations: Learning from the Experience of Others.Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 82 (1), 1-8.doi.org/10.1006/obhd.2000.2883

    Barron, Brigid. (2000). Problem solving in video-based micro worlds:Collaborative and individual outcomes of high-achieving sixth-gradestudents. Journal of Educational Psychology, 92(2), 391-398.

    Granklint Enochson, P. (2012). Om organsystemens organisation ochfunktion: analys av elevsvar från Sverige och Sydafrika. (Doctoraldissertation). Norrköping: Department of Social and Welfare Studies,Linköping University

    Hasselhorn, M., & Mähler, C. (2000). Transfer: Theorien, Technologienund empirische Erfassung. In W. Hager (Ed.), Evaluation psychologischerInterventionsmaßnahmen: Standards und Kriterien: ein Handbuch, 86– 101).Bern: Verlag Hans Huber.

    Johnsson, A. (2009) Dialogues on the Net - Power structures inasynchronous discussions in the context of a web based teache trainingcourse. (Doctoral dissertation). Lunds universitet, 2009. Malmö

    Mayer, R. E. (2002). Rote versus meaningful learning. Theory intoPractice, 41(4), 226–232.

    McConnell, David. (2000). Implementing computer supported cooperativelearning. Paper presented at the Proceedings of the InternationalConference (2nd, Lancaster, England, April 17-19).

    McConnell, David. (2005). Examining the dynamics of networked e-learninggroups and communities. Studies in Higher Education, 30(1), 25-42.Salomon & Perkins, 1989

    Schönborn K. J., & Bögeholtz S. (2009). Knowledge transfer in biologyand translation across external representations: Experts’ views andchallenges for learning. International Journal of Science andMathematics Education, 7, 931-955.

    Spiro, R. J., Collins, B. P., Thota, J. J., & Feltovich, P. J. (2003).Cognitive flexibility theory: Hypermedia for complex learning, adaptiveknowledge, application, and experience acceleration. EducationalTechnology, 43(5), 5–10.

  • 3.
    Johnsson, Annette
    et al.
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Granklint Enochson, Pernilla
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Sjöberg, Jeanette
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Transfer of knowledge from group work to participants' own practice in a course about research methodology2019In: NERA 2019: Education in a Globalized World, 2019, p. 779-780Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Research topic/aim

    In 2017, a regional cooperation project was initiated with four municipalities and Halmstad University, called From Great to Excellence (FGTE). The project is planned to run for five years, and participants are persons active in schools and preschools at different levels within the school practice. Within the FGTE project, the participants perform different development projects in cooperation across the municipal boundaries, where they act as critical friends for each other in order to drive each project forward (see e.g. Sales, Moliner, & Amat, 2017). In this study we have focus on the utilization of knowledge acquired in groups in participants own school context. The question we ask is “How is transfer of knowledge from group work to own practice perceived by participants participating in a course about research methodology?  

    Theoretical framework

    The theoretical framework in this study is situated within the socio-cultural field, since much of the focus is around the collaboration between the participants. Conversation is an arena for developing knowledge and by supporting and challenging each other's pronounced thoughts, prerequisites for development of knowledge are given (Vygotsky, 1978).

    Methodological design

    The empirical material for the present study consists of a questionnaire disseminated to the participants after they had completed the course. A total number of 57 questionnaires were collected which counts for about 65-70 percent of the total number of participants. The questionnaires were analyzed with SPSS factor analysis to detect underlying variables.

    Expected conclusions/findings

    Preliminary results show that, while expecting quite the opposite, by using factor analysis, a strong negative relation between, on one hand, the variable “the usage of research methodology has developed in the group”, and on the other hand, the variables “I have increased my ability to use new analytical concepts in my practise and  “I have increased knowledge in evaluating my own practice”. Meaning that the participants do not feel they, themselves, have learned more about the use of scientific methods relating to their own practice. While the group is progressing, their own learning has been put back.

    Relevance to Nordic educational research

    Through this study, we want to highlight the potential for improvement work in preschool and school practice which lies in developing school activities through a regional cooperation project. This, we mean, are of utmost relevance to Swedish/Nordic as well as international research fields within education.

    References

    Danielsson, E. (2017). Vetenskaplig teori och metod: från idé till examination inom omvårdnad. Henricson, M. (red.) (Andra upplagan). Lund: Studentlitteratur AB.

    Tryfos, P. (1996). Sampling methods for applied research: text and cases. New York: Wiley.

    Vygotsky, L. (1978). Mind in society: The development of higher psychological processes. M. Cole, Ed.Cambridge: Harvard University Press.

    Sales, A., Moliner, L., & Amat, A. F. (2017). Collaborative professional development for distributed teacher leadership towards school change. School Leadership & Management Formerly School Organisation. VOL. 37, NO. 3, 254–266

  • 4.
    Sjöberg, Jeanette
    et al.
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Johnsson, Annette
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Granklint Enochson, Pernilla
    Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS).
    Preconceptions or a Community of Practice? Discursive Constructions of the Preschool Practice in Preschool Professionals Conversations about Collegial Development Work2019Conference paper (Refereed)
1 - 4 of 4
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