#EDUC90970 A design-based framework to enhance marine eco-literacy

My research is aimed at finding solutions to challenges in coastal management. However, I had not thought to apply a similar solutions-based approach to educational design. “Design-based research” is a cyclic or adaptive approach to the development of a solution in response to an identified problem in education (Figure 1).

Figure 1. Design Based Research Framework (adapted from Aguayo et al. 2020)

Education outside of the classroom, such as field trips, aquariums or visitor centres can be important learning experiences for increasing knowledge of impacts in the marine environment and conservation. It is hoped that these experiences will influence action around sustainability and pro-environmental behaviour into the future. However, it is important to address the problem that participants may become disengaged over time following these activities. I was particularly interested in a study that suggested mobile learning may be a solution to sustained eco-literacy (Aguayo et al. 2020). These learning opportunities focus on “bring your own device”, and can be structured in a way that allows users to choose what or how they learn (known as heutagogical learning).

The authors suggested that offering a range of experiences along a real to digitally immersive continuum reinforces learning in diverse ways (Figure 2).

Figure 2. Mixed reality immersion continuum (from Aguayo et al. 2020)

This got me thinking about how mobile technology could be applied to have a more sustained engagement with the general community around marine education and conservation, as well as to enhance marine undergraduate experience. Something I think I’ll focus on for my #EDUC090970 assignment!


EDUCAUSE (2012) 7 things you should know about educational design research.

Aguayo C, Eames C, Cochrane T. 2020. A framework for mixed reality free-choice, self-determined learning. Research in Learning Technology 28: 2347.

3 thoughts on “#EDUC90970 A design-based framework to enhance marine eco-literacy

  1. Hi Rebecca,

    Thanks so much for sharing this – what an interesting and important discipline to research and teach in. As a member of the community, I have no background in marine education, and would definitely be interested in learning more. A heutagogical approach to community learning definitely makes a lot of sense. This approach would allow a very diverse group of people to direct and control their learning experiences. It sounds like digital realities could be really valuable in your discipline, as people are able to have meaningful learning experiences from home. For example, not everyone is able to go snorkeling, but most people can access a mobile device. I would really love to experience some of these digital realities to see what they are like. It would be great to build in ‘social presence’ to some of these digital environments to help establish an online community of inquiry.

    You may find this paper by Gonzales, Long-Raymond and Kehler (2019) useful/relevant. It investigated establishing a community of inquiry in online ecological restoration courses. I couldn’t find a free text but it is available on the library website- http://er.uwpress.org/content/37/1/34.abstract

    It sounds like you are onto something really valuable and important here – I look forward to seeing what you come up with!




  2. Hi Caitlyn,

    Thanks very much for the reference suggestion! I really enjoying hearing from Claudio Aguayo this week, and I think the 360 degrees tours in SeekBeak will be a really good tool for marine teaching. Can’t wait to try it out next time I am visiting my field sites!



  3. Hi Becki,

    I agree it was so great to hear directly for Claudio and actually see the technologies they used in their study. I really hope I get to see your SeakBeak before the semester is over… I hope the restrictions hasn’t made it impossible for you to get to your field sights! Creating a 360 photo is on my to do list also – but it will likely just be of the park haha!




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