Professionally Professed

Student thesis: Master Thesis and HD Thesis

  • Lonny de la Cruz Holm
  • Monica Hjort Traxl
This thesis details the development process of a high-fidelity prototype designed as an assisting tool for a specialised version of a Digital Storytelling workshop, aimed at social educators in the public childcare sector in Denmark. It also describes the explorative process which lead to the conclusion that such a tool - and thus our prototype - was needed.
Through a critical realistic approach, this thesis explores the ever-increasing demands on social educators for documenting their praxes and competences, and furthermore the process of agile development, also based in critical realism, that led to the final prototype product.
This led us to the need for a reimagining of the concept of the Digital Story in order to adapt it to the needs of the social educators. This reimagined workshop needed an assisting component in order to lower the bar both regarding skill level (wrt. IT tools) as well as to shorten the time needed in the actual workshop so as to make it available to a group of people with many demands on their time, where only a little is set aside for skill development.
We had the idea that there was a sound basis for the assumption that a Digital Story-like method would be useful to further the reflections of the work of a pedagogue in the public domain of child daycare; through the process of writing and development we found our assumptions to be true, as proved by user tests and focus group interviews.
The written part of the thesis also includes an overview of the current debate in Danish academia - as well as amongst social educators themselves - concerning the demand for documentation of professional practice, as well as a qualitative investigation of online debates concerning the self-perception of social educators within public child daycare. Through the theoretical perspective of Axel Honneth and the exploration done by Rasmus Willig, a perspective on these debates is given in order to reveal causal mechanisms concerning feelings of powerlessness and structural lack of agency.
Via the theoretical lens of Honneth’s “The Struggle for Recognition”, it became clear that Digital Storytelling would offer social educators a way to tell and reframe their professional field and potentially regain some of the power over their own discourse.
The practical part of the thesis is, as mentioned, a high-fidelity prototype which acts as a guide specifically aimed at social educators, taking their specific needs into account, and which guides them through the process of creating their own digital story.
Publication date1 Aug 2016
Number of pages59
ID: 237967427