Modellingspace: the setting up of human networks as vital part of the design and implementation of a technology-supported learning environment
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The ModellingSpace (MS) project is concerned with developing and implementing a computer-based modelling learning environment in actual school contexts and preparing an education programme for the teachers involved in it. The paper describes the conceptual framework of setting up human networks and developing them into communities of practitioners as part of carrying out this empirical research. To foster a harmonious integration of the environment and to promote an efficient use of it, the MS project sees the development of pedagogical tools as a process of innovation that involves teachers, as the main actors, from the first stages of the design. Teachers also participate in the building of new knowledge about the development of high level competencies such as modelling, exploratory learning and collaborative problem solving. In order to describe the complex mechanisms set to work during the implementation phase, a conceptual model is used. This concerns the systematisation of actions so as to focus on the goals of implementation and to control better the variables that could negatively bias any expected effects. The systemic nature of this model is expected to further facilitate the communication of the created expertise. It will thus allow to improve the efficiency of future actions in relation to the use of ICT-rich environments in education while also promoting a more formal “driving” of the associated changes.