Complementary lenses: Using theories of situativity and complexity to understand collaborative learning as systems-level social activity

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article highlights possibilities for understanding challenges related to collaborative learning by bringing two complementary lenses into theoretical and empirical conversation-complexity and situativity. After presenting a theoretical comparison that characterizes complementarity between complexity and situativity in order to frame their relative contributions to a systems-level understanding of learning processes, we examine persistently unproductive social activity during a 14-session, collaborative engineering design project in a fifth-grade peer group from both perspectives. We do so in order to demonstrate the value of these complementary perspectives for understanding collaborative learning processes and to suggest different explanations of why unproductive social activity sometimes persists and possibilities for interrupting such dynamics. We thus suggest a shift from explanatory accounts of system processes to prospective processes for systems of action within social ecologies of change. Such a framework can resolve the social activity of collaborative learning around a systems-level orientation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalLearning, Culture and Social Interaction
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Nov 10 2015

Fingerprint

learning process
system of action
learning
social ecology
peer group
conversation
engineering
Values

Keywords

  • Attractor patterns
  • Collaborative learning
  • Complex systems
  • Peer groups
  • Situated learning
  • Social positioning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

Cite this

@article{7b38815af8314a8281401b26d3dfcd73,
title = "Complementary lenses: Using theories of situativity and complexity to understand collaborative learning as systems-level social activity",
abstract = "This article highlights possibilities for understanding challenges related to collaborative learning by bringing two complementary lenses into theoretical and empirical conversation-complexity and situativity. After presenting a theoretical comparison that characterizes complementarity between complexity and situativity in order to frame their relative contributions to a systems-level understanding of learning processes, we examine persistently unproductive social activity during a 14-session, collaborative engineering design project in a fifth-grade peer group from both perspectives. We do so in order to demonstrate the value of these complementary perspectives for understanding collaborative learning processes and to suggest different explanations of why unproductive social activity sometimes persists and possibilities for interrupting such dynamics. We thus suggest a shift from explanatory accounts of system processes to prospective processes for systems of action within social ecologies of change. Such a framework can resolve the social activity of collaborative learning around a systems-level orientation.",
keywords = "Attractor patterns, Collaborative learning, Complex systems, Peer groups, Situated learning, Social positioning",
author = "Steven Zuiker and Katherine Anderson and Michelle Jordan and Stewart, {Olivia G.}",
year = "2015",
month = "11",
day = "10",
doi = "10.1016/j.lcsi.2016.02.003",
language = "English (US)",
journal = "Learning, Culture and Social Interaction",
issn = "2210-6561",
publisher = "Elsevier BV",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Complementary lenses

T2 - Using theories of situativity and complexity to understand collaborative learning as systems-level social activity

AU - Zuiker, Steven

AU - Anderson, Katherine

AU - Jordan, Michelle

AU - Stewart, Olivia G.

PY - 2015/11/10

Y1 - 2015/11/10

N2 - This article highlights possibilities for understanding challenges related to collaborative learning by bringing two complementary lenses into theoretical and empirical conversation-complexity and situativity. After presenting a theoretical comparison that characterizes complementarity between complexity and situativity in order to frame their relative contributions to a systems-level understanding of learning processes, we examine persistently unproductive social activity during a 14-session, collaborative engineering design project in a fifth-grade peer group from both perspectives. We do so in order to demonstrate the value of these complementary perspectives for understanding collaborative learning processes and to suggest different explanations of why unproductive social activity sometimes persists and possibilities for interrupting such dynamics. We thus suggest a shift from explanatory accounts of system processes to prospective processes for systems of action within social ecologies of change. Such a framework can resolve the social activity of collaborative learning around a systems-level orientation.

AB - This article highlights possibilities for understanding challenges related to collaborative learning by bringing two complementary lenses into theoretical and empirical conversation-complexity and situativity. After presenting a theoretical comparison that characterizes complementarity between complexity and situativity in order to frame their relative contributions to a systems-level understanding of learning processes, we examine persistently unproductive social activity during a 14-session, collaborative engineering design project in a fifth-grade peer group from both perspectives. We do so in order to demonstrate the value of these complementary perspectives for understanding collaborative learning processes and to suggest different explanations of why unproductive social activity sometimes persists and possibilities for interrupting such dynamics. We thus suggest a shift from explanatory accounts of system processes to prospective processes for systems of action within social ecologies of change. Such a framework can resolve the social activity of collaborative learning around a systems-level orientation.

KW - Attractor patterns

KW - Collaborative learning

KW - Complex systems

KW - Peer groups

KW - Situated learning

KW - Social positioning

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84960983731&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84960983731&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.lcsi.2016.02.003

DO - 10.1016/j.lcsi.2016.02.003

M3 - Article

JO - Learning, Culture and Social Interaction

JF - Learning, Culture and Social Interaction

SN - 2210-6561

ER -