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date: 01 October 2022

Researching Conditions of Learning—Phenomenography and Variation Theorylocked

Researching Conditions of Learning—Phenomenography and Variation Theorylocked

  • Angelika KullbergAngelika KullbergUniversity of Gothenburg, Department of Pedagogical, Curricular and Professional Studies
  •  and Åke IngermanÅke IngermanUniversity of Gothenburg, Department of Pedagogical, Curricular and Professional Studies

Summary

The research tradition of phenomenography and variation theory has contributed to insights on teaching and learning at all levels, from preschool to higher education. Phenomenographic studies contribute knowledge about how learners experience the same phenomenon in qualitatively different ways and thereby shed light on what learners need to discern to experience a phenomenon in more powerful ways. Variation theory, which was developed in relation to the collective empirical outcome and interpretation of decades of phenomenographic studies, is a learning theory that points to variation and invariance as primary mechanisms for learning. The theory may be used to plan teaching and to analyze teaching and learning and can therefore be used to address the relationship between teaching and learning. Learning study combines lesson study as a form for development of teaching in relation to learning with the theoretical input from variation theory, and an action research approach, using teacher experience and insights to systematically enhance teaching practice for learning (of the identified learning object). Recent developments in the field to a larger degree combine elements from phenomenographic and variation theory modes of inquiry and address the whole of teaching–learning as it unfolds in classrooms, as well as teaching and learning across larger knowledge areas and/or the stability of findings across larger sets of classrooms with teachers and students.

Subjects

  • Cognition, Emotion, and Learning
  • Educational Theories and Philosophies

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