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Sympossium: Design pattern methodologies symposium

CAL conference, March 2008: Challenges of the design pattern paradigm for the development of learning environments & experiences

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Yishay Mor
23 March 2009

An open discussion on the role, prospects and challenges of design patterns in education and e-learning. Please review our position papers and send in your questions at or #cal09ptns

Designing learning environments and experiences is a key challenge for the CAL community. The design pattern paradigm in education integrates the knowledge of professional educators and designers of learning tools to support good pedagogy with technology. Pattern languages can be viewed as "practitioner's handbooks" that can be used by novices to improve their design processes.
The last decade has witnessed a growing acknowledgement of the paradigm for research and practice in the learning sciences (e.g., Bergin, 2000; Goodyear et al, 2004; Brouns et al. 2005; Retalis et al, 2006; Winters and Mor, 2008).
The purpose of this symposium is to bring together the community of researchers engaged in using pattern-based approaches to design research in education to reflect on the state-of-the-art. While there have been many successes, pattern research in education faces a number of key challenges:

  • What kind of evidence do we need to have to know that a pattern is of general use in design?
  • What are the barriers for making a pattern language a useful tool for the broader community of educators and educational researchers?
  • As the pattern approach becomes more successful, how can we ensure that pattern authors build on each other’s work, fostering a culture of knowledge accumulation?
  • How is the pattern approach related to other means of knowledge sharing?

This symposium will focus on an open debate led by international recognised researchers across Europe. We will open with an overview introducing the field, followed by 4-5 short position papers, leaving the main bulk of time for discussion, and concluding with a response by the organisers. The discussion will be structured as a panel debate around preselected questions.
CAL conference attendants are invited to offer their own position papers and questions for the panel. Please leave a comment on this page if you wish to contribute.


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Gráinne Conole
11:23am 23 March 2009

Hi looks like a really interesting session Yishay. I was in Sydney with Chris Jones, Diana Laurillard and others in December at an excellent pedagogical patterns summit that Peter Goodyear ran.


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