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Workshop held by Prof. Dr. Pierre Dillenbourg

"Three generations of CSCL research" was the topic of the workshop on February 11, 2011. It has been attended by 13 students of the Doctoral Training Program at MCLS. Participants had the chance to engage in some interactive activities and provoking discussions.


Prof. Dillenbourg browsed through the history of CSCL research around three generations of studies. The first generation aimed at understanding the effect of social interactions on learning, namely the idea that learning occurs as a side effect of the effort towards a shared understanding. It also aimed at understanding the effects of technologies on these interactions. It led to the notion of "designing for conversation", i.e. not considering any hypothetical intrinsic effect of technologies but designing environments specifically for triggering productive social interactions. The second phase of CSCL aimed to understand which design patterns (namely scripts) generate productive verbal interactions. In the third phase emerged, use of CSCL environments in authentic contexts required two forms if integration: integrating collaborative learning activities within broader pedagogical scenarios which also include lectures and individual activities; integrating the constraints of teachers' work in the design of technologies. This last part is related to novel CSCL technologies such as tabletop environments, tangible interfaces, ubiquitous computing and paper-based computing.