Self-directed lifelong learning in hybrid learning configurations

Petra H.M. Cremers, Arjen E.J. Wals, Renate Wesselink, Nienke Nieveen, Martin Mulder

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    Abstract

    Present-day students are expected to be lifelong learners throughout their working life. Higher education must therefore prepare students to self-direct their learning beyond formal education, in real-life working settings. This can be achieved in so-called hybrid learning configurations in which working and learning are integrated. In such a learning configuration, learning is typically trans-boundary in nature and embedded in ill-structured, authentic tasks. The goal of this study is to develop a set of design guidelines for an intervention that would strengthen students’ capacity for self-directed lifelong learning within a hybrid learning configuration, a one-semester elective course at a university of applied sciences in the Netherlands. The research approach was educational design research. An intervention was designed, implemented and evaluated during two iterations of the course. Evaluation methods included interviews with students and the course facilitator, questionnaires, and students’ logs and reports. We developed five intervention design guidelines that will promote self-directed learning. Our conclusion is that the intervention was usable and effective: at a basic level, the students did develop their capacity for self-directed lifelong learning. Further research is needed to investigate conditions for realizing higher levels of proficiency in self-directed lifelong learning throughout the curriculum and beyond.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)207-232
    JournalInternational journal of lifelong education
    Volume33
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2014

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