Supporting Seamless learning experiences by design: What is it (about) and why should we care? (invited keynote)

Activity: Talk or presentation typesConference contribution (without a publication)Academic


Learning not only occurs in formal settings, within educational institutes, but across various (professional and private) environments in which learners are intentionally and actively engaged. As a child we already learn by trial and error, by imitating and trying things, by discovery and play, driven by our own curiosity and adjusted by our mistakes. We learn by thinking and doing and from personal experience. As such, learning does not take place in isolation or in a vacuum, but often happens together with others, as a social process of giving meaning. Research also shows that it is important for learning to connect abstract concepts (theory) with concrete, practical (learning) experiences. This makes learning more meaningful, personal, motivating, applied and more sustainable.

However, learners’ experiences in various (learning) environments learners engage with are still separated in many ways. Opportunities to facilitate continuity in learning (and support) processes and the ‘binding’ of these experiences through the use of (mobile) technology are still left unexploited.

In this talk I will first reflect on the potential surplus value of ‘continuity’ of learning and support processes, in terms of learning gains. Furthermore, through showing examples and good practices from various learning contexts, I will look at ‘seamless learning’ from a design perspective and (pro)pose it as a design paradigm. I will argue that learning from, in and between contexts can contribute to specific (learning) outcomes, but also has important consequences for the design, organization and support of learning processes. Taking this stance and looking ahead, I will outline how the seamless learning design paradigm can help to shape the future of lifelong learning and the higher (distance) educational landscape.
Period25 Aug 2020
Event title27th Annual Conference of the "Gesellschaft für Medien in der Wissenschaft e.V.": Enabling Lifelong, Seamless Learning
Event typeConference
Conference number27
LocationWinterthur, SwitzerlandShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational


  • seamless learning
  • mobile learning
  • ubiquitous learning
  • learning design
  • Lifelong Learning
  • contextualised learning
  • situated learning