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The Dream About the Magic Silver Bullet: The Complexity of Designing for Tablet-Mediated Learning

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Association for Computing Machinery


In this paper, we report three cases of the integration of technology such as web-enabled media tablets in Scandinavian schools. Both qualitative and quantitative data have been applied. A daily challenge for teachers is to coordinate their group of students in a way that enables collaborative learning. We report the gaps and interrelations between the dreams and the practice of the teachers. They dream about an interconnected praxis -- the magic silver bullet -- and establish their visions of inter-connectivity because of their breakdown experiences of media tablets aiding complexity instead of reducing it. The teachers must learn how to navigate during the breakdowns before media tablets reduce complexity and reach a state in which the tablets take part in the classroom ecology as functional organs. The teachers have to deal with complex situations during class in situ. In order to be able to continue with the class, the teachers become jongleurs of different design elements including the handling of the didactical designs and the breakdowns caused by the integration of media tablets; the teaching practice in classrooms moves away from a common routine activity and turns into a design project.


Jahnke, Isa; Svendsen, Niels Vandel; Johansen, Simon Kristoffer; Zander, Pär-Ola (2014): The Dream About the Magic Silver Bullet: The Complexity of Designing for Tablet-Mediated Learning. Proceedings of the 2014 ACM International Conference on Supporting Group Work. DOI: 10.1145/2660398.2660404. Association for Computing Machinery. pp. 100–110. Sanibel Island, Florida, USA