Advancing the conception of multidimensional learning: Insight from theoretical and empirical investigations on laboratory education

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Conceptions of learning in higher education have been theorised extensively. Prominent names such as Entwistle, Biggs, Marton, and Perry are recurring references in university pedagogy courses. This paper expands Illeris’s multidimensional view of learning (Illeris, 2018) and reconceptualises it in light of theoretical and empirical advancement in laboratory education research, by resolving two RQs: (1) How can multidimensional learning be used as a theoretical lens to advance our understanding of student learning? (2) How can such a reconceptualisation be investigated empirically?
To address RQ1, I conducted a scoping review to propose a conceptual framework. Synthesis of theoretical and empirical corpora in science studies and the learning sciences led to a working model for integrated assessment. To address RQ2, I conducted empirical investigations, incorporating a range of methodological approaches, viz. quantitative ethnography, video research, multimodal discourse analysis, cognitive interviews, and survey instruments.
A multidimensional view has been useful to frame a more holistic conception of learning in the lab, in which students’ cognition, affect, conation, and psychomotor domains are activated through social interactions, encapsulated within an epistemic domain (Agustian, 2022). Such an interplay is coined as the hexad of learning domains in the laboratory. Thus far, laboratory discourse (Agustian & Gammelgaard, 2022) has been substantiated, providing an authentic description of what it means to engage in an epistemic practice. Data from the cognitive interviews and surveys are being analysed.
University teaching laboratories are fertile environments that generate learning, but it depends on the curricular structure, instructional design, and assessment. Findings from this study so far indicate that a comprehensive assessment may do justice to the complexity of learning processes and outcomes in this setting. Provisional data from the affective part indicates some relevance for discussions on inclusive practices in higher science education.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2023
Number of pages2
Publication statusPublished - 2023
EventDUN Conference 2023: Learning Environments: Relations & Settings - Kolding, Denmark
Duration: 24 May 202325 May 2023


ConferenceDUN Conference 2023
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