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  • 1.
    Ince, Amanda
    et al.
    UCL IOE, United Kingdom.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Professional learning implications for Higher Education Institutions, schools and teachers from Masters level programmes in England and Sweden2017Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 2.
    Lindberg, J OLa
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    A decade later: Twelve teachers' retrospective views on a national programme for teachers' professional development and ICT2014In: Adult and Continuing Education: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications, IGI Global, 2014, p. 1781-1790Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Today, an increased impact of information and communication technologies (ICT) in the society at large has lead teachers to engage in professional development activities related to the use of ICT. Even though this development has been prominent for more than two decades, its long term effects seem complex to determine. This paper is based on interviews with twelve Swedish teachers who participated in a national program for promoting school development and use of ICT in 2000-2001. The program was aligned with the pedagogical approaches set out in the national Swedish curriculum, such as a shift from teaching to learning and giving pupils more responsibility, introducing interdisciplinary approaches to teaching in teams, and a problem based pupils-oriented pedagogy. The analysis of the interviews show that teachers still feel a high degree of appreciation for the program, and that they share a relative agreement of the importance of the program for their teaching with ICT in the last decade. The general intentions of the program to be more concerned with school development and pedagogy rather than technology and ICT seem also to be present today as a long term effect.

  • 3.
    Lindberg, J Ola
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Institution of education.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Institution of education.
    A decade later: Twelve Teachers´retrospective views on a national programme for teachers´ professional development and ICT.2012In: International Journal of Cyber Ethics in Education, ISSN 2155-8903, Vol. 2, no 1, p. 25-34Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Today, an increased impact of information and communication technologies (ICT) in the society at large has lead teachers to engage in professional development activities related to the use of ICT. Even though this development has been prominent for more than two decades, its long term effects seem complex to determine. This paper is based on interviews with twelve Swedish teachers who participated in a national program for promoting school development and use of ICT in 2000-2001. The program was aligned with the pedagogical approaches set out in the national Swedish curriculum, such as a shift from teaching to learning and giving pupils more responsibility, introducing interdisciplinary approaches to teaching in teams, and a problem based pupils-oriented pedagogy. The analysis of the interviews show that teachers still feel a high degree of appreciation for the program, and that they share a relative agreement of the importance of the program for their teaching with ICT in the last decade. The general intentions of the program to be more concerned with school development and pedagogy rather than technology and ICT seem also to be present today as a long term effect.

  • 4.
    Lindberg, J. Ola
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Institution of education.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Institution of education.
    Bridging school-subjects and distances in upper secondary schools2011In: Campus-Wide Information Systems, ISSN 1065-0741, Vol. 28, no 3, p. 144-153Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose: The aim of this paper is to report how Swedish upper secondary schools involved in a European Union-financed collaborative project intertwined aspects of subject integration and international collaboration with the use of ICT. Design/methodology/approach: The methodology used is a case study in which aspects of subject integration and international collaborative ambitions are intertwined with the use of ICT. Data consist of interviews with participants, texts concerning the project, the participating school, and the Swedish upper secondary schools system. Findings: Teachers and students have worked towards the objectives in the project and in the national curricula, and the case shows how difficult and how many barriers there are to overcome. Even though the curricula seem difficult to coordinate, students appear to have learnt more about the European perspective, as well as about themselves, through the approach. The teacher describes student motivation as high - authenticity and real people to collaborate with support the students' experience of a holistic education, which applies to real life. The teacher tried to change the role towards providing students with structure and advice, monitoring their progress, and assessing their accomplishments, but reported to be struggling with the teacher role. Originality/value: The paper demonstrates originality and value by providing important insight into the use of ICT in upper secondary schools for the purpose of collaboration and at the same time working towards joint curricular themes. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

  • 5.
    Lindberg, J Ola
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Educational Sciences, Department of Education.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Educational Sciences, Department of Education.
    Enhancing the European dimension in upper secondary schools - using ICT to bridge school-subjects and distances.2010In: Readings in Technology and Education: Proceedings of ICICTE 2010, 2010, p. 38-48Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 6.
    Rasmusson, Maria
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Educational Sciences, Department of Education.
    Sundgren, Marcus
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Educational Sciences, Department of Education.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Educational Sciences, Department of Education.
    Podcasting and blogging - the way to learn?: Presented at the European Conference on Educational Research 2008 in Gothenburg Sept 102008Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Much research has been done in the area of distance and online education and the possibilities and obstacles connected to that kind of education (see for instance Jonassen, D., Peck, K. L. & Wilson, B. G., 1999; Jung, 2005; Salmon, 2004). New technologies have changed the conditions for distribution of distance courses the last decade. Learning management systems (LMS) of various kinds have been developed; podcast, wikis and blogs are enablers for enhancing flexible education. Little research is done on how students perceive the availability of podcasts and blogs for their learning and even less on the effects on students’ learning, if any (Bell et al, 2007; Boulos et al, 2006; Maag, 2006)? Podcasting refers to a technique to distribute a collection of digital media files over the Internet, often using syndication feeds, for playback on portable media players or computers. The term can refer to either the content itself or to the method by which it is syndicated. The media thus distributed can be either plain audio, video or a combination of audio and presentation slides, often called enhanced podcasts ). Blog is a portmanteau of “web log”, a website where the author publishes entries combining text, images and links to other sources related to its topic. The ability for readers to leave comments in an interactive format is an important part of many blogs. Mid Sweden University gives a course for students in teacher training and as inservice-training for teachers: “ICT and media as support for learning”. It is a distance course with one physical meeting in the beginning, and one at the end of the course. LMS, blogs and podcasts are used between these gatherings. In this course the students were offered to borrow a video-capable Ipod to give them options of Mobile Learning (mLearning). The study includes two groups of students, one group took the course the summer 2007 and a second group the summer 2008 which as of this writing hasn’t been held yet. Some of the on-campus lectures were provided as enhanced podcasts, and some additional lectures were only made available as podcasts. Another assignment required the students to comment on the course literature and lectures in the form of a blog entry. The students in the study group then commented on each others entries. An overall question is if educational providers should invest in Ipods and podcast productions? Does the benefits outweigh the costs and the efforts? The present study wants to investigate the student’s use of these features of the course. How did the students perceive the use of Ipods and podcasts in the course, and for their learning? How and how much did they use the blog, what characterized their blogging? As a theoretical framework the sociocultural theory was used. Learning is a social act that can be mediated between social beings through language, signs, genres or tools. Ipods and blogs can be seen as artifacts for learning from a sociocultural perspective. These tools can facilitate learning in a context relevant for the student (Säljö, 1999; Vygostky, 1978; Wenger, 1998).

    Methodology, Methods, Research Instruments or Sources Used

    This study was conducted with questionnaires and text analysis. We distributed an initial questionnaire to investigate the students expectations and their background. At the end of the course we conducted a second survey about their perceptions of podcasts in relation to their learning. Text-analysis were used for the student blogs (Coffin et al, 2006).

    Conclusions, Expected Outcomes or Findings

    An understanding about the students’ perceptions of podcasts and an outlook on how students can use blogs in a learning situation.

  • 7.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Collaboration with private companies as a vehicle for school improvement: Principals’ experiences and sensemaking2019In: Journal of Professional Capital and Community, ISSN 2056-9548, E-ISSN 2056-9556, Vol. 4, no 1, p. 15-35Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract

    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine principals’ experience and sensemaking of collaboration with private companies, focussing on leadership and school improvement.Design/methodology/approach – This paper is set against the backdrop of a project where three public Swedish schools collaborated with private companies within their communities. Data were collected over three years and consisted of semi-structured interviews, meeting notes, field observations, field notes and document analysis. A qualitative content analysis was performed using the Atlas.ti 6.2 software tool.Findings – The study shows that important sensemaking for the principals in this collaboration between schools and private companies is related to the sense of collective responsibility and involvement, development of improvement culture and trust between key actors, and common improvement initiatives based on mutual interest. Challenges in the collaboration are related to principal changes, a lack of implementation of the collaboration, and that there was no clear vision of external collaboration in two out of three schools. In terms of possibilities, the collaboration was based on the needs of the school, a collaborative culture was developed, and the development/activities were undertaken between involved schools and private companies during the collaboration.

    Research limitations/implications – Inevitably, there are limitations that need to be identified and recognised in this study. First, the small number of cases in this multiple case study, as well as the specific social context, limits the possibility of generalising the findings. Second, the study was not independently selected, and the findings and analyses are linked to national and local contexts, which can be seen as a limitation and strength. Notwithstanding, this study contributes with in-depth information about how a beyond-school collaboration with private companies is practised as well as how involved principals made sense of the collaboration from the perspective of school improvement.

    Originality/value – The originality is the collaboration between schools and private companies. The paper contributes with new knowledge about how principals experience and make sense of this collaboration as a vehicle for school improvement.

  • 8.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Collaborative partnerships and school leadership to enhance internal capacity building in schools – theoretical considerations2017Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 9.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Combining a thesis and an evaluation mission in a school development and research project - methodological considerations2015Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 10.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Entrepreneurship as capacity building in three schools2015Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 11.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    How do the overall leadership of three schools influence school performance and goal achievement, and how can we understand it from a school leadership perspective?2013In: Proceedings of the 18th Annual Conference of the EDUCATION, LEARNING, STYLES, INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES NETWORK: Building Learning Capacity for Life / [ed] Lena Boström, Gunnar Augustsson, Carol Evans, Zarina M. Charlesworth, Eva Cools, (Eds), 2013Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 12.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Looking for the concept of the total leadership: -  An international literature review of research on school leadership2014Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 13.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education. Mittuniversitetet.
    Principals Experience And Sensemaking Of A Collaboration With Private Companies As A Vehicle For School Improvement2018Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper aims to explore principals experience and sensemaking of a school collaboration with private companies from the local community of the school in a Swedish setting. Collaboration within educational settings continues to gain more and more attention as school networks, chains, partnerships. Broadening professional learning communities have been introduced in a number of educational settings around the world (Ainscow, 2016; Chapman et al., 2016; Muijs et al., 2010). Research imply that these approaches to school improvement could establish a valuable platform for professional collaboration and improvement in schools (e.g. Cordingley, 2015; Muijs, 2008) as well as being enablers of internal capacity building in schools (Hargreaves and Fullan, 2012). This is in line with Ainscow (2016), who argues that the aim must be to “move knowledge around” and the best way to do this is through strengthening collaboration within schools, between schools and beyond schools. 

    In Sweden, there has been an intention to improve school through collaborative structures, shared responsibility and collective learning that promote collaboration since the governmental investigation of the school-working environment in 1974 (SOU, 1974:53), and the introduction of the 1980 national curriculum. Today, teacher teams are an ‘institutionalized practice’ in most Swedish schools, but the meaning of the collaboration can vary greatly (Blossing & Ekholm, 2008). Despite that, there still seems to remain a individualistic culture in the Swedish school system. Municipalities, schools, principals and teachers are used to working relatively “isolated” without collaboration with the outside world (Björkman, 2008; OECD, 2015; Nordholm, 2015).

    Today, Swedish school principals are responsible for school improvement and for creating conditions for teaching and learning so that all students reach their educational goals. National policy states that Swedish principals act as pedagogical leaders with focus on the national curriculum to increase teachers’ capacity in relation to teaching and learning and to create a learning environment (Bredeson & Johansson, 2000). The principal's responsibility for proper school development has been strengthened in the new Education Act from 2010 compared to the previous (Jarl, 2013) and it clarifies the principal's responsibility, authorities, and decision-making right. Still, both Swedish (e.g., Blossing & Ekholm, 2008; Larsson, 2004) and international studies (e.g., Hargreaves & Fink, 2006; Lambert, 2007) have highlighted difficulties in bringing about learning and sustainable school improvement in local schools. The importance of leadership for increased learning and improvement in schools are well known and emphasized in research (Hargreaves & Fink, 2006; Leithwood et al, 2006). The study leans on the theory of communities of practice (Wenger 1998) and sensemaking theory (Weick, 1995, 2001). The purpose of this study is to examine principals experiences and sensemaking of a school collaboration with private companies from the local community of the school, focusing on leadership and school improvement. The research questions that frame the study are: 

    -       How do principals experience and make sense of a school collaboration with private companies? 

    -       How can the outcomes of the collaboration be understood in terms of possibilities and challenges?

     

     

    Methodology or Methods/research (Length up to 400 words)

    The study employed a qualitative case study design with a purposive sampling method in order to include schools working with companies in the framework of a collaborative improvement project. The present study aimed at examining principals experience and sensemaking of a school collaboration with private companies from the local community of the school, focusing on leadership and school improvement. In order to solve the problem in this study, a contextual depth is required. According to Stake (1995, p. 16) a case study allows it: "In qualitative case study, we seek greater understanding of the case, we want to appreciate the uniqueness and complexity, its embeddedness and interaction with its contexts."This is in line with Yin (2007), who mean case studies as a research strategy is based on wanting to explore an area in depth, focusing on how and why (Yin, 2007). The case in this study, ‘the quintan’(Stake 1995, 2006) was thebeyond schoolcollaborationbetween three schools and three mentor companies, and was pre-selected to study (Stake, 1995). This work is an “intrinsic case study” (Stake, 1995), which is typically undertaken to learn about a unique phenomenon, and this case is understood as a unique phenomenon. 

     

    Data was collected over a period of three years (2012-2015) and mainly consisted of semi-structured individual interviews with the principals of the schools. Project meeting notes, field observations, field notes, and document analysis was also used in order to create a ‘thick description’ of the case. The 16 interviews were conducted in the beginning, middle and in the end of the collaboration, lasted about 50-70 minutes each and concerned questions about: school organizations, distribution of labour and job sharing, how the schools and the companies collaborates, and other external collaborations between the schools and the surrounding community. The nature of the interviews changed during the course of collaboration, from the focus on the school and the conditions for collaboration to the development of collaboration with the companies and, ultimately, on how the collaboration went and what it contributed to. All interviews were recorded and saved as separate digital audio files and then transcribed verbatim. The Atlas.ti 6.2 software tool was used to organise the interviews in the process of data analysis. Qualitative content analysis has been used for the analysis of this study and the collected empirical data was analysed using within-case analysis (Miles et al., 2014).

     

     

    Conclusions, Expected Outcomes or Findings (Length up to 300 words)

    The findings illuminate three areas of interest: (a) collaborative structure (b) collaborative culture, and (c) emerging professional learning communities. A core story was formulated based on the themes and categories in order to elucidate the principals’ experiences and sensemaking of the collaboration between schools and private companies. One concluding remark so far is that the collaboration has created awareness among the principals and also demonstrated the practical possibilities of school collaboration and working with the surrounding community more in general. The final conclusions of the study will be presented at the conference. Implications for further research will be considered. For European educational research, this is one essential matter as it can be seen as a contribution to valuable knowledge about key factors for principals and schools work with school improvement and in a Nordic context, for both practitioners and policy makers. 

     

       

     

     

    References (up to 400 words)

    Ainscow, M. (2016), “Collaboration as a strategy for promoting equity in education: possibilities and barriers”, Journal of Professional Capital and Community, Vol. 1 No. 2, pp. 159-172.

    Björkman, C. (2008). Internal Capacities for School Improvement – Principals´ views in Swedish Secondary Schools. (Doctoral thesis, Umeå University).

    Blossing, U. & Ekholm, M. (2008). A central school reform program in Sweden and the local response: Taking the long term view works. Urban Education 43(6): 624–652.

    Bredeson, P. & Johansson, O. (2000). The school principal’s role in teacher professional development. Journal of In-Service Education 26(2): 385–389.

    Chapman, C., Chestnutt, H., Friel, N., Hall, S. and Lowden, K. (2016), “Professional capital and collaborative inquiry networks for educational equity and improvement?”, Journal of Professional Capital and Community, Vol. 1 No. 3, pp. 178-197.

    Cordingley, P. (2015), “The contribution of research to teachers’ professional learning and development”, Oxford Review of Education, Vol. 41 No. 2, pp. 234-252. 

    Hargreaves, A., & Fink, D. (2006). Sustainable Leadership. San Fransisco: Jossey-Bass.

    Hargreaves, A. and Fullan, M. (2012), Professional Capital: Transforming Teaching in Every School, Teachers College Press, New York, NY.

    Jarl, M. (2013). Rektors pedagogiska ledarskap i ljuset av skolans managementreformer. Pedagogisk Forskning i Sverige, 18(3-4), 197- 215. 

    Lambert, L. (2007). Lasting leadership: Towards sustainable school improvement. Journal of Educational Change 8(4): 311–322. 

    Larsson, P. (2004). Förändringens villkor. En studie av organisatoriskt lärande och förändring inom skolan. (Doctoral thesis). Stockholm: EFI, Ekonomiska forskningsinstitutet vid Handelshögskolan i Stockholm.

    Leithwood, K., Day, C., Sammons, P., Harris, A., & Hopkins, D. (2006). Seven strong claims about successful school leadership. National College for School Leadership. 

    Muijs, D., West, M., & Ainscow, M. (2010). Why network? Theoretical perspectives on networking, School Effectiveness and School Improvement, 21:1, 5-26.

    Nordholm, Daniel (2015). Organising for school improvement at the middle tier: studies on temporary organisation. Diss. (sammanfattning) Göteborg : Göteborgs universitet, 2015

    OECD (2015). Improving Schools in Sweden. An OECD perspective. Paris: OECD.

    Stake, R. E. (2006). Multiple Case Study Analysis. New York, London: The Guilford Press.

    Weick, K. E. (1995). Sensemaking in organizations. Thousand Oaks; CA: Sage. 

    Weick, K. E. (2001). Making sense of the organization. Malden, MA: Blackwell. 

    Wenger, E. (1998), Communities of Practice: Learning, Meaning, and Identity, Cambridge University Press, New York, NY. 

    Yin, R. K. (2007). Fallstudier: design och genomförande. (P. Söderholm övers.). Malmö: Liber.

  • 14.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Principals leadership to enhance internal capacity building in schools through collaborative partnerships.2017Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 15.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    School-University Collaboration – A Way To Build Internal Capacities for School Improvement? A Swedish Case Study2016Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 16.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Björkman, Conny
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Principals leadership as an internal capacity for school improvement - principals and teachers views in three Swedish schools2017Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 17.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Ince, Amanda
    UCL Institute of Education, UK.
    Þórólfsson, Meyvant
    University of Iceland.
    Teacher Professional Learning As A Response To Issues Of Teacher Retention And Recruitment: Perspectives From Iceland, Sweden And England2018Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 18.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Styf, Maria
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Internationalization and school leadership: – keys to school improvement?2014Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 19.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Styf, Maria
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Internationalization as an internal capacity builder for school improvement: a case study2019In: International Journal of Leadership in Education, ISSN 1360-3124, E-ISSN 1464-5092Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article presents findings from a case study that examined how internationalization at one Swedish upper secondary school could be understood in relation to building internal capacities for school improvement. This article used a case study methodology in which aspects of capacity building, and internal capacities constituted the theoretical point of departure. Data consisted of interviews with the principal and teachers, observations, and field notes. The article argues that internationalization at the upper secondary school supported capacity building, and it is evident that internationalization is an internal capacity. It is also apparent that the principal’s leadership is distributed and vital to the school’s success in terms of internationalization and school improvement. Above all, internationalization serves not only as an external form of collaboration but also as an internal capacity at the school for leadership, professional development, and internal collaboration. It is evident that these internal capacities are intertwined. 

  • 20.
    Sahlin, Susanne
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Institution of education.
    Söderlund, Anders
    Luleå tekniska universitet.
    E-lärande med stöd av sociala medier2010Conference paper (Refereed)
1 - 20 of 20
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