Skip to main content
Login | Suomeksi | På svenska | In English

Browsing by Author "Kuronen, Aino"

Sort by: Order: Results:

  • Kuronen, Aino (2019)
    Objectives. The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of a digital learning environment on the self-efficacy of early childhood educators. Earlier research shows that early childhood educators face challenges as science educators. In addition, earlier research shows that early-stage educators are cautious about digital learning environments. The aim of this thesis is to find out what kind of circumstances weaken and strengthen the self-efficacy experiences of early childhood educators when using the Supralaakso learning environment. Finding out the experiences of self-efficacy of early educators will provide information on how we can support early educators’ self-efficacy as science educators in the world, reflected in digitalism and technological development. Methods. The study was conducted as a qualitative case study involving three early educators. Interviewees' experiences of getting to know the Supralaakso learning environment and how to use it in the 3-6-year-old group were discussed using a semi-structured theme interview method. Interviews were conducted as individual interviews. The interview transcripts were analyzed by means of narrative analysis, building on the experiences of early educators. Plot summaries and role characters of the self-efficacy story were formed. In the analysis of experiences, Bandura's graph describing the emergence of self-efficacy experiences was used. By comparing, categorizing and typing the themes of the plot summaries and self-efficacy characters, it was possible to construct an image of what reinforced and weakened self-efficacy experiences. Results and conclusions. The two interviewees felt that the use of the learning environment was mainly a positive thing, but one did not decide to use the application with their group. My research suggests that seeing children’s active role in inquiry, making science education approachable, and carefully considering pedagogical choices can empower self-efficacy experiences. Particularly providing the support for conceptual learning of children and their freedom of choice regarding the experiments in the application could be identified as factors that weaken self-efficacy. The stories, the pre-designed study package and the first impression of the features of the application also appeared to be reinforcing factors, but in one educator these partially also weakened self-efficacy. As a conclusion of the study, it can be concluded that the experiences of self-efficacy can be supported by a digital learning environment, when the application enables inquiry-based activities and play by children, and if it can create a simple and approachable image of science education.