Dr. Ellen Rusman is Associate Professor at the faculty of Educational sciences – the faculty of education and research on learning, teaching and technology of the Open University of the Netherlands. She is an expert in the design of and research on technology-enhanced learning scenarios. She also is Programme leader (a.i.) of the Technology Enhanced Learning and Innovation (TELI) research group and leads the group on Mobile & Seamless Learning design. A common thread in her work is connecting people and their experiences in different (learning) contexts through (mobile) technology, so that learning knowledge and skills becomes more meaningful, appropriate, fun, effective and efficient. Her current focus is on mobile and seamless learning design, specifically in supporting collaborative learn and work experiences and in facilitating the acquisition and assessment of complex skills in technology-enhanced, networked, seamless learning environments. In her projects Ellen works closely with teachers, learners (students, pupils) and employers. She attaches great importance to the practical and conceptual contribution of a project as experienced by stakeholders. She was with Viewbrics also nominated for the Best Research and Practice Project award at the EAPRIL conference and received two prices with the ELENA project, a mobile game-based scenario for supporting early language learners to become acquainted with various languages.

Supporting Seamless learning experiences by design: What is it (about) and why should we care?
Dr. Ellen Rusman, Open Uiversity of the Netherlands

Learning not only occurs in formal settings, within educational institutes, but across various (professional and private) environments in which learners are intentionally and actively engaged. As a child we already learn by trial and error, by imitating and trying things, by discovery and play, driven by our own curiosity and adjusted by our mistakes. We learn by thinking and doing and from personal experience. As such, learning does not take place in isolation or in a vacuum, but often happens together with others, as a social process of giving meaning. Research also shows that it is important for learning to connect abstract concepts (theory) with concrete, practical (learning) experiences. This makes learning more meaningful, personal, motivating, applied and more sustainable.

However, learners’ experiences in various (learning) environments learners engage with are still separated in many ways. Opportunities to facilitate continuity in learning (and support) processes and the ‘binding’ of these experiences through the use of (mobile) technology are still left unexploited.

In this talk I will first reflect on the potential surplus value of ‘continuity’ of learning and support processes, in terms of learning gains. Furthermore, through showing examples and good practices from various learning contexts, I will look at ‘seamless learning’ from a design perspective and (pro)pose it as a design paradigm. I will argue that learning from, in and between contexts can contribute to specific (learning) outcomes, but also has important consequences for the design, organization and support of learning processes. Taking this stance and looking ahead, I will outline how the seamless learning design paradigm can help to shape the future of lifelong learning and the higher (distance) educational landscape.

Lung-Hsiang Wong,
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Re-conceptualising Seamless Learning

Over the last 14 years, scholars have been re-interpreting and re-designing seamless learning, applying different lenses to examine other aspects of seamless learning than its salient feature, meaning the connectivity of learning experience across a combination of locations, times, technologies, or social settings. This has resulted in a rich and yet perplexing repertoire of frameworks and solutions for practitioners to consider. Rather than aligning seamless learning research and practice to a standard design framework, it seems more opportune to allow diversity to push the boundaries of what is possible.

My talk is a „soul-searching“ exploration of seamless learning, underpinned by my belief that seamless learning is a learning notion in its own right, not just a special form of technology-enhanced learning (or, more specifically, mobile learning). At the same time, the role of technology in facilitating and supporting seamless learning will be discussed. In particular, I will explore the niche concept of seamless learning by comparing it with other relevant learning notions such as blended learning, self-directed learning, and lifelong learning. In doing so, I will investigate the more recent conceptions and implementations. In addition, I will elaborate on a recent study of mine on how seamless science learning has been implemented in primary schools, which illustrates an application of seamless learning with less reliance on 1:1 (one-mobile-device-per-student) settings.

Lung-Hsiang Wong is a Senior Research Scientist and the co-Director of the "Learning Sciences and Innovation" Research Program, Office of Education Research, National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. His research interests are lying in mobile and seamless learning, computer-assisted language learning, computer-supported collaborative learning, and teachers' professional development. To date, he has published close to 40 SSCI/SCI-indexed journal papers. He won APSCE Distinguished Researcher Award in 2015 and is the immediate Past President of Asia-Pacific Society for Computers in Education. He is a Managing Editor of Asia-Pacific Journal of Education (SSCI-indexed). 2015 den APSCE Distinguished Researcher Award.

Marcelo Milrad is a Full Professor in Media Technology at the Department of Computer Science and Media Technology. His research interests include the design of learning environments to support learning about complex domains, collaborative discovery learning and the development of mobile and wireless applications to support collaborative learning. He has published over 230 articles in international journals, referenced conferences, books and technical reports. Professors Milrad has given lectures and presentation about work and research in more than 45 countries around the world.

Marcelo Milrad,
Linnaeus University (LNU), Sweden
Seamless Learning and Digital Transformations in Education: Future Challenges and Opportunities

This presentation will start with a brief overview of the diverse effects that digital technologies have had on our lives, with a special focus on education. Seamless learning is a concept that can help us understand some of these developments. A few examples from past and current projects in this field will illustrate this further.

Next, I will focus on the details and challenges of the upcoming EU Digital Europe 2021-2027 framework program. I will elaborate on how digital technologies are creating new opportunities for the way we conceptualize higher education for the next decade. Using some of the societal challenges I will describe as a point of departure, I will explore the idea, among others, that education systems require new thinking and strategic action in terms of how digital technologies could transform the way we teach and learn.