Fra skrappe moster til facilitator: Et studie af skoleelevers kreative læring ved brug af mobile medier på et science center

Celia Ekelund Simonsen

Research output: ThesisPh.D. thesis


The thesis examines how digital media and technologies influence students (5th-6th
grade) ways of acting in a science centre context. The thesis draws on ethnographic
research carried out in the school workshop "Energy agent for a day" at the science
centre Experimentarium in Copenhagen.

The thesis uses a socio-cultural theoretical approach to the concept of learning and
asks the following question: How does young people's social situated participation,
creative co-creation and reflection in relation to the use of digital media influence
their science learning?

In order to answer the research question the thesis seeks a holistic view on the
relations and interactions between individuals, artefacts and context, and on how a
digital media influences the students' creative science learning. The thesis therefore
takes an interdisciplinary theoretical approach and positions itself between the
research on learning in museums and science centre, media and information
literacy (MIL) and science literacy (chapter 2).

The ethnographic studies were conducted from May 2011 to November 2012 and
comprises two versions of the school workshop: 1) The old workshop where
students used worksheets in the exhibition, and 2) the new workshop where the
students used mobile phones and the application "The hunt for green energy".
Nine school classes were included in the latter study, and it is the observations,
photographs, sound recordings and interviews from these workshops that make up
the thesis’ primary empirical data.

Each chapter in the analysis (chapters 5-7) is based on a key incident, which has
been identified during the initial empirical analysis (chapter 3) as sociocultural
differences leading to discontinuities in the way the students acted in the

The thesis concludes:

• The students act more independently and take ownership of their responses to a
much greater extent than was the case in the old school workshop.
• The school workshop has emerged as a performative activity for the students
whose participation, co-creation and reflection are formed depending on the
situation, the context and the expectations placed on them.
• The digital media frames the students' creative learning process, but both pilots and
teachers continue to play a vital role in relationship to the students.
• The empirically identified discontinuities, decisive for the choice of key incidents,
have been proven to invite for a dialogic negotiation and participation in the school
• Digital media and technologies in the school workshop help shape students, pilots
and teachers way of acting and roles in a way that is beneficial for student’s science
learning and literacy.
Original languageDanish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Southern Denmark
  • Drotner, Kirsten, Principal supervisor
  • Krogh, Ellen, Co-supervisor
Place of PublicationOdense
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2016

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