CfP: Academic culture and academic freedom in view of the digitization of teaching and learning

Call for the special issue: Academic culture and academic freedom in view of the digitization of teaching and learning
Editors: Ines Langemeyer (Karlsruhe), Ernst screw (Roskilde) & Peter Tremp (Lucerne)
Release date: October 2022

To the main topic

The experience of the Covid-19 pandemic strongly promoted the use of digital media in teaching and studies, the on-site presence of lecturers and students was made impossible for a long time. This has not only changed the teaching and study settings, but also the way universities see themselves.

In particular, questions arise about the implications of this – now accelerated – digital transformation on academic culture. Many universities have carried out corresponding surveys and drawn conclusions. It is believed by some that (non-digital, physical) presence is a core element of academic culture. It is also discussed that a dominance of mere knowledge transfer via digital technologies would once again promote the “learning” of education, i.e. H. a channeling of events to testable results of teaching-learning interactions. Others, however, speak of a “post-digital education”, which reverses the direction of view, that already significant parts of life are pervaded by digitization and in this respect only the failure of digital services and functions is becoming a reality. So far it remains unclear how the university culture of the future can be conceived, whether overall the plurality of sciences, their forms of knowledge and their reflexive, self-critical practice are suffering or whether new, promising cultural developments are already emerging. This particularly addresses the forms of teaching and studying in digital settings. Are new possibilities for a reflective scientific practice opening up here, or are new restrictions to be observed? Their forms of knowledge and their reflexive, self-critical practice suffer or new promising cultural developments are already emerging. This particularly addresses the forms of teaching and studying in digital settings. Are new possibilities for a reflective scientific practice opening up here, or are new restrictions to be observed? Their forms of knowledge and their reflexive, self-critical practice suffer or new promising cultural developments are already emerging. This particularly addresses the forms of teaching and studying in digital settings. Are new possibilities for a reflective scientific practice opening up here, or are new restrictions to be observed?

There are also legal questions: Which activities can be saved in digital form? How do you protect privacy when there are work and study rooms in your own home? How can tests be carried out properly and correctly in terms of data protection law? And what does all of this do to our academic culture?

In addition, more fundamental questions arise about the understanding and practice of constitutionally guaranteed academic freedom in the face of digital transformation processes. Last but not least, this freedom protects a university culture that is open to discourse. What if everything (including the preliminary, unfinished and articulated to try out) is recorded, if everything can be removed from the context of this culture, if practices are stored in data tracks and if everything strives towards “open science”?

The planned special issue addresses the following questions:

  • The teaching and study conditions are changing fundamentally with digital transformation processes. How do these changes relate to questions of academic culture and academic freedom? Which new questions arise, which new answers become visible?
  • How are judgments and opinions formed in the context of digitized communication and information searches? Are reflections on scientific knowledge restricted or renewed and expanded in new formats?
  • Are opinions “freely” expressed in teaching-learning events or is there more self-censorship if this event leaves a digital trace? How is the understanding of “being free” changing in digital spaces? What external and internal independence is required in these circumstances? How and in what way can scientific freedom be experienced?
  • How are content-related design options changing for students? Will the course content be tied down in a new form by digitization or will new opportunities for participatory, problem-oriented and research-related learning open up? How do digital technologies change the possibilities of dialogue, experimentation and cooperation in the practice of learning and studying?
  • How is the responsibility and sense of responsibility of students and teachers changing towards science? Which freedoms in the service of science are still negotiable between lecturers and students?

Empirical studies and case studies are just as welcome as theoretical-philosophical discussions.

Notes on the journal

The ZFHE is a refereed online journal for scientific articles with practical relevance to current issues in university development. The focus is on didactic, structural and cultural developments in teaching and studying. Topics are included in a special way that can be described as innovative and still open in terms of their design options.

The ZFHE is published by a consortium of European scientists. Further information: https://www.zfhe.at.

Submission information

Contributions can be submitted in two different formats in German or English:

Scientific contributions: Scientific contributions within the main topic should meet the following criteria: The contribution …

  • offers innovative perspectives, arguments, problem analyzes etc. on the main topic;
  • focuses on essential aspects of the main topic;
  • is theoretically well-founded, ie it offers a clear connection to the scientific discourse on the topic dealt with;
  • offers, at least in part, an increase in scientific knowledge;
  • makes the methodology of knowledge acquisition transparent;
  • consistently follows the relevant rules of citation (APA style, 6th edition);
  • comprises a maximum of 33,600 characters (including spaces as well as cover sheet, literature and author information).

Workshop reports refer to the instructive presentation of practical experience, ‘good practice’, design concepts, model projects, etc. Workshop reports should meet the following criteria:

  • Potential for transfer to other areas of practice;
  • Elaboration of generalizable aspects and factors in the sense of a theory formation;
  • Systematics and transparency of the presentation (e.g. no incomprehensible references to specifics and details in a field of practice);
  • consistent adherence to the relevant rules of citation (APA style, 6th edition);
  • Volume of a maximum of 21,600 characters (including spaces and cover sheet, literature and author information).

Time schedule

July 4, 2022 – Deadline for submitting the complete article: Upload your articles in the ZFHE journal system ( https://www.zfhe.at ) under the corresponding section (scientific article, workshop report) of issue 17/3 in anonymized form ; To do this, you must first register in the system as an “author”.

July / August 2022 – Feedback / Reviews: Scientific contributions and workshop reports are assessed in a double-blind process (see below).

September 5, 2022 – Revision deadline: If necessary, contributions can be revised according to criticism and recommendations from the reviews.

October 2022 – Publication: In October 2022, the finalized articles will be published at https://www.zfhe.at and will also be available in print.

Review process

All submitted contributions are checked for their scientific quality in a “double-blind” peer review process. The editors of the booklet propose the reviewers for the respective thematic focus and assign the individual contributions to the reviewers; they also decide on the acceptance of the contributions. The selection of reviewers and the review process are accompanied by a member of the editorial board for each themed issue.

Formatting and filing

In order to save valuable time when formatting the contributions, we would like to ask all authors to work with the template right from the start, which can be downloaded from the ZFHE homepage:

https://www.zfhe.at/userupload/ZFHE_17-3_TEMPLATE_de.docx

https://www.zfhe.at/userupload/ZFHE_17-3_TEMPLATE_en.docx

The texts must be editable and z. B. in the formats Microsoft Word (.doc), Office Open XML (.docx), Open Document Text (.odt) or as plain text (.txt); please do not submit PDF files. The contributions are initially required in an anonymised version in order to guarantee the double-blind review process. Please remove all references to the authors from the document (also in the document properties!). If the review result is positive, this information is reinserted.

To ask?

Content-related questions, please contact Ines Langemeyer (ines.langemeyer@kit.edu), Ernst screw ( schraube@ruc.dk ) or Peter Tremp ( peter.tremp@phlu.ch ).

For technical and organizational questions, please contact Elisabeth Stadler ( office@zfhe.at ).


Photo by Kristina V on Unsplash

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