This is a series of blog posts about my learning activities in the
Open Networked Learning (ONL202) pedagogical course.

We are living in an exciting era with high demand for teaching digitalization. I hope that my posts will bring useful information for everyone interested in pedagogy and online learning.


Online learning opens the possibility for teaching methods that address each individual needs, but requires an appropriate knowledge for a successful implementation.

  1. The visitor and resident map is a good first activity to illustrate personal online engagement;
  2. Use inclusive tools, provide clear instructions;
  3. Account for all types of inteligence. People learn differently also in the online environment.
  4. Be prepared to swictch roles with students, many are native in technology.

Digitalization opens many new possibilities to improve teaching and learning in multiple levels. Teachers are now capable of providing more diverse, accessible practices that suit well each kind of intelligence and social background. However, fostering online participation and engagement with online tools requires that both teachers and students are reasonably comfortable and literate in digital technologies. These requirements are potentially dangerous in segregating those students with limited online access and may also bring more stress and additional load to the teachers to handle. Here, I discuss a few points to assist teachers on making better use of the digital environment to foster better learning practices.

1. The visitor and residents map

David White presented the interesting
Visitor and Resident framework to map how we engage with different digital tools. In this chart, one drafts a two-axis chart with Visitor and Resident on the limits of the X axis and Personal and Work on the limits of the Y axis. Then, the person is free to place any number of digital tools (e.g., e-mail, office software, YouTube, blogs) in the chart to illustrate how he/she considers to use these tools in the personal and work context.

The visitor and resident map can be quite useful for a teacher as a breaking-the-ice activity in the begining of a course, to get to know better the students’ engagement with the online world, and subsequently tailor the learning activities accordingly. In the video below, David White makes an elegant and quick introduction to the Vistor and Resident model.

2. Multiple intelligences

We, human beings, exhibit a diverse set of intelligences, which are nicely described by Howard Gardner’s work on multiple intelligence and education (
Smith, Mark K.; 2002, 2008). Teachers should be aware that each student may learn through different means. Gardner’s theory propose the following multiple intelligences:

  1. Linguistic
  2. Logical-mathematical
  3. Musical
  4. Bodily-kinesthetic
  5. Saptial
  6. Interpersonal
  7. Intrapersonal

We could add another type of intelligence, the Digital intelligence, which shapes how we absorb information, interact, and create knowledge through digital means. Childrens and adolescentes have been already exposed through their whole lifes to digital technologies, in the form of games, online activities, and social interactions. In this scenario, the digital world creates a novel intelligence that also contributes to how we learn through digital means. Putting yourself in the younger’s perspective, you will probably realize that it’s getting harder to think how can we learn something if we can’t search or interact with it online. You can navigate through our
Miro board to explore the content we created.

3. Online engagement: How to improve it?

As a group effort, we (Group 61) created the DigiLit Fish (figure below) as a diagram with questions and answers (recommendations) on how to improve the online participation and student engagement in the digital learning spaces.

The DigiLit Fish by Group 6 ONL202

Promoting online engagement is a difficult task that requires full consideration of the cultural background, tools, and participants’ roles (teachers and students) (
Yengin et al., 2010). Cultural and social background defines several aspects of the digital literacy. For example, different than in classical lectures, in online teaching the students might know better how to use digital tools than the teachers, switching the role with the teacher. Teachers should be prepared to benefit from this situation.

The selected tools for teaching should be clearly introduced and selected to promote inclusion of every student, considering possible access limitations and how they operate as
visitors or residents. There are a plethora of webpages that compiled available free online tools for teaching, for instance
here and

We may assume that students can easily adapt to novel technologies, however, clear training and instructions would possibly contribute to a more efficient learning and online engagement (
Ozdamar-Keskin et al., 2015).

The online engagement diagram


Ozdamar-Keskin et al. (2015) Examining Digital Literacy Competences and Learning Habits of Open and Distance Learners, Contemporary Educational Technology, v.6 pages 74-90.

Smith, Mark K. (2002, 2008) Howard Gardner and multiple intelligences, The encyclopedia of pedagogy and informal education.

Yengin et al. (2010) Roles of teachers in e-learning: How to engage students & how to get free e-learning and the future, Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, v.2 pages 5775-87.

  1. Group 6 members: Victor Souza, Mohit Gupta, Kinaz Al Aytouni, Marcus Stensmyr, Stephanie Birkner, Hui-Chen, Erik Elfgren, Vigdis Ahnfelt, Charlotta Hilli, and Cecilia Hellekant. ↩︎

Topic 1: Online Participation & Digital Literacy