Learning, Media and Technology Doctoral Conference

Good News. I’ve had my abstract accepted for the Learning, Media and Technology Doctoral Conference at the London Knowledge Lab on the 4th of July. I’ll be submitting a paper (4000-6000 words) for the online conference proceedings at the end of May. Reviewed papers will be considered for publication in a special issue of the Learning, Media and Technology journal. In the meantime, here’s the abstract:

The proposed paper describes current doctoral research into how a small sample of social sciences, humanities and interdisciplinary PhD students are adopting and using social and participative media (web 2.0) in their academic practices. The study uses a qualitative, mixed-method design of observation of online activities, participant-reported accounts and successive in-depth interviews. An Activity Theory-based analytical framework of interrelated activity systems is used to describe shifting patterns of practice across multifarious academic contexts and through key phases in the doctoral experience.

The study adopts holistic perspectives of (i) doctoral practices, that legitimises academic activities beyond those related purely to thesis-development and established models of participation and enculturation, and (ii) of social media, responding to the multiplicity, interrelatedness and transiency of web 2.0 tools and platforms. In doing so, it recognises the self-efficacy and heterogeneity of PhD study in the negotiation of multiple socio-technical research communities and networks, and the complex role social media can play in identity-formation and induction into doctoral scholarship and academic professional development.

In addressing the significant gap between the potential of web 2.0 and the reality of low adoption rates and lack of widespread use, the paper proposes that dominant discourses and idealised concepts within the educational technology and media communities do not necessarily reflect the majority of doctoral students’ engagement with social media. Rather, key incentives, disincentives and barriers created by tensions with embedded research cultures within and without the faculty, and inconsistencies in training opportunities and shared practice, heavily influence and disrupt patterns of adoption and use.

The paper will also describe how the dissemination of the activity systems analysis is facilitating the ongoing participant interviews, enabling a negotiated understanding of participants’ use of web 2.0, and encouraging a shared, critical and reflective dialogue for the development of effective social media practices.

Tags: , ,

5 Responses to “Learning, Media and Technology Doctoral Conference”

  1. Tweets that mention Learning Media and Technology Doctoral Conference | PhD Blog (dot) Net -- Topsy.com Says:

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Grainne Conole, Andy Coverdale. Andy Coverdale said: New blog post – Learning, Media and Technology Doctoral Conference http://bit.ly/eXOYlI […]

  2. Luisa Miguel Says:

    Hi Andy, good news indeed – congratulations for your accepted abstract on Learning, Media and Technology Doctoral Conference. What an interesting investigation you’re holding in your doctoral thesis. I wish you a very good work and high inspiration for the paper development. There’s so many relevant issues envolved in your abstract, that althought the’yre a little faraway from my study area, however, I would like to express my opinion about some of them. Something gouth my atention on the reading abstract and had made one douth in my mind: during your doctoral research method, have you analized more envolment of the users/PhD students in social media and network communities, in the begening of their studies (mybe influenced by the supervisions/organized research
    system) or more visualized in the last stage of their investigacions, when maybe there could be more facilitacion, knowledge from them, of the kind of interactions, relations to be found on the networks environments? Sorry, I didn’t express myself too well but I think you get what I wanted to say. Another thing very impressive in your subject thesis study: in terms of choosen method research for your investigation, how can you analised so much interactivity of the participants on social media pratices, inside a field that moves so quickly and envolved in such different dinamics rytms?
    Really enjoyed very much, reading your abstract for the conference and the way you write it.
    See you, Luisa Miguel

  3. Andy Coverdale Says:

    Thanks for your comment Luisa. To answer your questions in turn, my participants are at different stages of their PhDs, which naturally influence which doctoral practices are currently important and which they can reflect on, though these do not necessarily correspond with their levels of maturity in using specific social media. In practical terms, having a small sample enables me to take the wider perspective of social media, and include all the tools participants are using. Methodologically, this has been instrumental in determining how specific key academic practices can be mediated by one, or in some cases more than one tool, and how, over time, as these combinations of social media routinize or disrupt these practices, some tools can be replaced by others or become less or more important.

  4. Luisa Miguel Says:

    Andy, your explanation of the methodological procedure used in investigation process whit PhD students in social media use, let me understood better the aspects envolving styles aproaches of users inside a communitie of pratice. I believe your estrategy work in investigation, would lead you inside the real movements of the participantes, not only related whit events from PhD activities but also, whit all the digital objects of learn and socialising used by them even outside institucional enviroments.
    Tank you again. Every time I came to your blog I always learn something new. In fact, reading your posts make me feel more conscienciouly about may own relation whit others inside twitter activities. See you.

  5. Delaine Wrede Says:

    Thanks for some other excellent article. Where else may just anybody get that kind of info in such a perfect approach of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I am at the look for such information.

Leave a Reply