Mixed Methods Research as a Pragmatic Toolkit

Understanding Versus Fixing Complexity in the Learning Sciences

Authored by: Filitsa Dingyloudi , Jan-Willem Strijbos

International Handbook of the Learning Sciences

Print publication date:  April  2018
Online publication date:  April  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138670594
eBook ISBN: 9781315617572
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9781315617572-43

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Abstract

Educational research has been often criticized for being detached from practice, unable to address authentic educational issues raised in everyday learning and teaching settings, and not to contribute to educational practice and policy improvements (Lagemann, 2002; Lagemann & Shulman, 1999; Robinson, 1998). Educational researchers tend to be interested in rather narrow measures of learning, such as learning of pre-specified content and/or training of skills, implying that measuring learned content and/or skills is the only worthwhile measure of performance (Collins, Joseph, & Bielaczyc, 2004). As such, practice-detached educational research does not fully consider the complexity of the learning process due to contextual influences and complex outcomes (Robinson, 1998). This deficiency of educational research led to the establishment of the interdisciplinary field of the Learning Sciences (LS).

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