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From an Architecture of Participation to a Structure for Nurturing Relationships. Swedish Teacher Trainees’ Informal Learning on Facebook. 120307 Fredrik Hanell, PhD student Library and Information Studies Lund University. Why is it a class of Swedish teacher trainees
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InformalLearning on Facebook
Fredrik Hanell, PhD student
Libraryand Information Studies
prefer to engage in learning practices on
Facebook, rather than on the VLE they are
supposed to use for their academic work?
order to facilitatemediated action.
Facebookwas not originallydeveloped to
facilitatepractices of learning and collaboration.
of littleeducationaluse to date.
(e.g. Hew, 2011; Madgeet al, 2009;Selwyn, 2009)
potential of a tool that most students are using
frequentlyand the possibilities to support new
forms of communicationbetween students and
(Lampeet al, 2011)
Similarly, Gee(e.g. 2009) argues that schoolscan
(and should) learnfrom computer games.
To explorehow, and why, a class of Swedish
teachertrainees use a Facebook group as an
informalplatform for learningand
communicationrelated to theireducation.
mediated action as the main analytical unit (Wertsch, 1998)
The concept of distributedfunds of living
knowledge (cf. Francis, 2010)
An ethnographicallyinspiredmethod for data
productionis adopted, including:
participant observation, observationalnotesand
textualand visual datacollectedand arranged
Three main types of conversations are identified:
(including features such as Like and Comment)
appearsto be important in the process of
In the Facebook group, an important part of
being information literate is to know how to use the
relationships vital whenestablishinga
sustainablecode of reciprocationnecessaryfor
learningpartnerships to function.
(cf. Francis, 2010).
Francis, R. (2010). The decentring of the traditionaluniversity: the future of (self) education in virtuallyfiguredworlds.
Gee, J.P. (2009). Affinityspaces: From age of mythology to today’sschools, at http://www.jamespaulgee.com/node/5,
accessed at 28 February 2012.
Hew, K.F. (2011). Students’ and teachers’ use of Facebook. Computers in Human Behavior, 27:2, 662-676.
Lampe, C., Wohn, D.Y., Vitak, J., Ellison, N.B. & Wash, R. (2011). Student use of Facebook for organizingcollaborative
classroomactivities. Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning, 6, 329-347.
Madge, C., Meek, J., Wellens, J. & Hooley, T. (2009). Facebook, social integration and informallearning at university: ‘It is
more for socialising and talking to friends about work than for actuallydoing work’.
Learning, Media and Technology. 34:2, 141-155.
Selwyn, N. (2009). Faceworking: exploring students’ education-relateduse of Facebook. Learning, Media and
Technology, 34:2, 157-174.
Wertsch, J. (1998). Mind as action. Oxford: Oxford University Press.