Didaktik for Distance Education in Secondary and Adult Education

  • Hilli, C. (Speaker)
  • Anna Åkerfeldt (Contributor)

Activity: Talk or presentationConference presentation


Abstract NERA 2022

Charlotta Hilli, Åbo Akademi University
Anna Åkerfeldt, Stockholm University

This paper presentation discusses a recent study where upper secondary school and adult education teachers from six schools developed distance teaching in Sweden. The teachers participated in a professional development program (2019–2022). A Didaktik theory was used to analyse factors for distance teaching on a structural level (e.g., content, intentions, methods, media, students, sociocultural contexts) and on a professional and systemic (organisational, curriculum) level. The primary data were group interviews with teachers and coordinators at three times during the three years long Design-Based research process. The teacher groups developed teaching practices in close collaboration with the researchers who provided relevant research and helped focus the processes. The researchers analysed the materials produced and shared their insights throughout the project. The analysis suggests that the teacher groups developed professionally as distance teachers by reflecting on and testing different ways to communicate (synchronously, asynchronously) and teach online. However, several conditional factors were also highlighted in the interviews. The presentation introduces Didaktik principles for distance education. For example, introductions to students, frequent interactions between students-content, teacher-student, student-student and relevant digital content and assessment methods suitable for digital learning environments. Conditional factors include faculty support, professional training specific for distance teaching, organisational factors (legal restrictions, curriculum) and sociocultural factors related to the school and the course participants that influences the teaching practice.

As there is a growing interest for distance education in the Nordic countries it is relevant to consider Didaktik in online settings. The teachers in the project also expressed a need for frameworks of Didaktik to structure and reflect on their online teaching practices as they had not taken part in specific courses or education on distance teaching.


Funded by Högskolestiftelsen i Österbotten
Period1 Jun 2022
Event titleNERA: Nordic Educational Research Association : Education and involvement in precarious times
Event typeConference
LocationReykjavik, IcelandShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational