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Digital writing tools from the student perspective: Access, affordances, and agency
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
2019 (English)In: Education and Information Technologies: Official Journal of the IFIP technical committee on Education, ISSN 1360-2357, E-ISSN 1573-7608, Vol. 24, no 2, p. 1563-1581Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Along with digital development, new possibilities for communicating have emerged. The younger generation has adopted these new possibilities to a great extent. In order to be able to utilise the opportunities offered by digital tools when writing, access to digital tools is essential. Schools need to develop a writing education that meets students’ contemporary writing needs. In considering this, it is important to learn more about the gains and the losses in digital writing. The purpose of this study was to understand and discuss the relation between students’ digital access, students’ per- ceived affordances with digital writing, and student agency. The methods used were a statistical survey and qualitative interviews. Six classes from five different schools located in a municipality in the middle of Sweden were chosen as an informant group. The results indicate that the most common condition concerning students’ digital access was that students shared digital tools for writing with their families. An analysis of affordances was carried out to interpret the empirical findings from the qualitative data. Affordances that emerged were: write-ability, edit-ability, story-telling ability and accessibility. In addition, the ways in which digital access and the affordances per- ceived can be related to student agency were analysed. The main conclusion was that given the conditions of digital access and opportunities to practice, the affordances of digital writing can increase student agency. In turn, this suggests that writing education that focuses on student agency can contribute to equity in writing activities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. Vol. 24, no 2, p. 1563-1581
Keywords [en]
Affordances, Agency, Digitaltools, Students’views
National Category
Educational Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-35126DOI: 10.1007/s10639-018-9844-xISI: 000461557100031Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85058047256OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-35126DiVA, id: diva2:1269248
Available from: 2018-12-10 Created: 2018-12-10 Last updated: 2020-02-19Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Förutsättningar för elevers textskapande: En studie om digitala resurser, multimodalitet och elevers handlingsmöjligheter
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Förutsättningar för elevers textskapande: En studie om digitala resurser, multimodalitet och elevers handlingsmöjligheter
2020 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Modern society is characterised by change. Humans’ ways of communicating have changed in many ways due to society’s social, linguistic, cultural and textual plurality. The digitalisation of society has contributed considerably to the changed conditions for communication and representation that have emerged. Given these new conditions, it is crucial to increase the body of knowledge about how digital resources shape possibilities for students’ participation in text activities in school. The purpose of this thesis was to increase the understanding about the role of digital resources for middle school students' meaning-making as they create text in school. The theoretical point of departures includes multimodal social semiotics and multiliteracies. The participants included 111 Swedish middle school students. A multiple methods design was used in this thesis and included multimodal text analysis, interviews, a survey and multimodal analysis of video observations. Four studies were conducted. Overall, the results of the thesis indicated that the use of digital resources enabled students to create texts on more equal terms an dactively participate in writing activities. When designing texts with access to multiple modes, students used digital resources and various modes in diverse ways. Some students chose to use only writing, whereas others utilised the whole range of available resources. Students appeared to choose modes based on previous experiences and modal preferences. The availability of multiple modes during the digital text design process could mean that some students’ text design experiences in the home environment were recognised in the school context. For a few students, the allowances offered by digital and modal resources enabled them to actually create stories, which was rather difficult when using the mode of writing alone. An analysis of the content of students’ texts indicated that many students were influenced by the popular culture texts that they engaged with in informal settings. The pedagogical implications for literacy practices include and recognising students’ experiences from engaging with texts in informal settings, whether popular or not, in the classroom environment to connect students’ life and classroom experiences. This form of education is built on plurality and students’ resources.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sundsvall: Mid Sweden University, 2020. p. 111
Series
Mid Sweden University doctoral thesis, ISSN 1652-893X ; 316
Keywords
Agency, digital resources, literacy, multimodality, text making
National Category
Pedagogy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-38444 (URN)978-91-88947-41-3 (ISBN)
Public defence
2020-03-20, E409, Sundsvall, 10:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

Vid tidpunkten för disputationen var följande delarbeten opublicerade: delarbete 3 (inskickat), delarbete 4 (inskickat).

At the time of the doctoral defence the following papers were unpublished: paper 3 (submitted), paper 4 (submitted).

Available from: 2020-02-19 Created: 2020-02-19 Last updated: 2020-02-19Bibliographically approved

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Dahlström, Helene

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