Educational Science

MOOCs, CAPs, U.Labs & Co: Update PhD Project



Another important step is done – I successfully submitted my proposal for my PhD Project at the Institute for Educational Science and am now officially PhD Student at the area Innovation, Organization, Networking! While submitting a paper together with my supervisor, and a symposium for next years DGfE Conference on “Movements”, as well as for the Conference-Papers of this Years Congress of the Commission of Organizational Pedagogy, the working title of my project meanwhile has changed and now is »MOOCs, CAPs, U.Labs and Co: Enhancing and transforming Learning and Knowledge in (Higher Education) Networks«.

As the title shows, the focus has shifted a little from a “mere” discussion of changes in learning-processes in Higher Education towards “new” forms and their potential in regard to innovation, transformation and movements/change. Theories and approaches for learning and development will be analyzed in regard to the question, which suggestions and practices they offer to provide translation in heterogeneous global learning scenario, and how these translational suggestions differ between being reflexive/analytical and/or experience-orientated/dialogical approaches. It seems promising, to analyze them within their specific cultural qualities of referenciality, community and algorithmicity and different notions of the political (Stalder 2016). The thesis will be a predominately theoretical study, including empirical (cumulative) and conceptual work and aims to analyze processes of change in Higher Education in the context of Globalization and Digitalization.

Following a vision of an “Open Global Net-worked Online University”, it discusses and connects on a meta-reflective-level different theories and praxis-approaches on changes and innovation of learning and knowledge in Higher Education, to answer the question: How to enable traditional universities to become an active and creative part of a » networking global online university«”,


  •  how to describe, to enable, and to foster adequate processes of learning in highly heter-ogeneous learning-communities,
  •  how to define and create a new learning-culture for global networked academic learning
  •  how to describe the future role of such an “Open Global Networked Online University” for Societal Change and Innovation

and to develop

  •  a typology of forms of networking learning-scenarios as an analytical framework/matrixFrame
  •  and a competence-grid which proposes a “tool-kit” for appropriate/adequate translational settings and translational strategies

The framework therefore is

  •  My published papers on these questions which based on the theories of Gregory Bateson (Learning-Levels and Theory of Change) and Connectivism, and
  •  theories and approaches which look at the same questions from a different angle of view and argue with different types of causation (Transformative Learning, Theory U, Organizational Pedagogy)

It will be a challenging and pulsating process, as I am also about to start a new job (75%) where I will be part of a team working on a project on the quality of teaching in Higher Education and especially on the question how to support and foster “freshmen” at universities to successfully and satisfyingly start (and remain) in their academic life. I am sure that both, my new job and my PhD Project will interrelate and mutually benefit from each other. I will keep you updated and motivated to dare to follow up your professional visions and goals – no matter what age and background you have!   Literatur Stalder, Felix (2016): Kultur der Digitalität, Suhrkamp Verlag, Berlin

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