My research area

My expertise focuses on "active, student-centered learning with technologies" and sociotechnical integration for human centered work and learning processes in CrossActionSpaces. My research areas are  Learning Design & Technologies (Digital Didadactical Design). My work includes user experience and usability studies.

My research area

When offline and online worlds are merging together, a new phenomenon evolves: CrossActionSpaces (my book, Routledge/2015) . Under such new circumstances, I study  technology-enhanced learning designs --   learning efficacy defined with effectiveness, efficiency, and appeal. Results from my research show how to apply creativity in digital education, how to utilize remote labs in engineering education, how to make use of tablets in schools for meaningful learning.


With my work -- developing and analyzing  "learning with technology" from a human-centered view --  I contribute to more effective teaching and learning designs. Results lead to design of the 'classroom of the future' focusing on creative teaching and active learning practices, improved work processes.  My theoretical lens is called Digital Didactical Designs that includes social, pedagogical and technological usability heuristics for learner experience.  I make an impact on a) the constructive alignment of teachings goals, learning, assessment, roles/relationsips (social presence) and meaningful use of technology, and b) teachers and developers to design for user-friendly, usable and useful learning processes.


  • A Learner Experience and Learnung Design Lab: Together with our Information Experience Lab, we conduct user experience and usability studies in Journalism, School of Nursing, Computer Science, College of Education, The Information Experience Lab adopts a SocioTechnical Design approach to integrate user experience in technical designs and usability testing. The IELab is striving towards new usability methods for new flexible devices, and for VR/AR environments. There is also a need to rethink existing usability methods for new groups of users such as smart city applications, multiple incidents managements with social VR and to enhance the technological usability heuristics with pedagogical and social heuristics that can help to evaluate technology-enhanced learning envrionments in schools, higher education and non-formal settings.

  • CrossActionSpaces (Jahnke, 20015) appear when offline and online spaces and processes are merging and providing opportunities for new forms or strategies of teaching and learning. It is not only "interaction" but "crossing action" by people.

  • Digital Didactical/Didaktik Designs for Learning with Technologies: Digitalization of K-12 schools with 1:1 mobile computing (e.g., iPad/tablets). The team explored how teachers in schools design  teaching and learning with digital technologies. What kind of innovative forms of pedagogies do they create? We have studied sociotechnical-pedagogical processes, and help teachers to improve their digital teaching/learning practices, and we make an impact on schools during their digital transformation. Are you interested in studying digital technology, teachers' designs for learning  and students outcomes?  Digital Didactical Design (DDD) is an approach that engages teachers in  designing for tablet/technology-mediated learning. My work helps teachers  how to use digital tools for improving effective learning.  We use the five-layer DDD-model (Jahnke, 2015) and  relate the teacher designs to student outcomes such as products (artifacts) created with different apps.  The project helps teachers to evaluate and reflect on their designs for learning with the aim to promote student learning.

  • Keywords
    • Learning Technologies
    • Digitale Didaktik
    • CrossActionSpaces
    • Human-Centered Computing and Sociotechnical Design
    • User Experience Studies
    • Game-based learning (location-based games)

List of research projects and grants

Main research projects (selection)

  • With IELab, I work with different clients that work with my learning design lab (2015-active)
  • NSF grant "investigating cyber-security practices" (PI Calyam) , Co-PI Isa Jahnke and others (2018-2020)
  • LeXMizzou, Students as Digital Game designers for learning; MU IIFund Award (2016-2017)
  • "Usability Testing of the Kinect-based Fall Risk Evaluation and Feedback System", MU Research Council, PI Lorraine Phillips (2016-2017)
  • Digital Designs for 'Didaktik' -- Tablets/iPads in schools in Denmark, Sweden and Finnland (2012-2015)
  • DaVINCI -- Creativity in higher education (2008-2011)
  • PeTEX -- Remote-Controlled Labs in Engineering Education (2008-2011)
  • InPUD -- Socio-technical, online learning communities in a computer science study programme (2001-2004; follow-up 2006-2009)

Further projects are listed here: http:/


Research projects with regard to Digital Didactics  - Digital(e) Didaktik - are available in the menu left.

Research projects

Digital Didactical Designs - grant by

11/25/2013 15:10
We are very happy to inform that our research project application has been granted by the Swedish Research Council ( : “Of 297 applications received, 38 have been granted, giving a success rate of 12.8 percent.” For our project, we will receive around 5.4 Mio SEK (ca. 610 000 Euros), around 3...

Research projects

06/01/2012 20:49
Here are our current and finalized research projects (menu left) Abstracts to our current 5 projects can be found here: Media Tablets and Didactics Mobile Learning Creative Learning Rethinking Blended Learning (is there any unblended learning?)  

My theoretical underpinnings: the advanced social role theory

02/18/2012 17:46
Recently, a person asked me, "What are your theoretical and methodological underpinnings?".  Although I have an answer, sometimes it is difficult to make it explicitly, and that is an hint that you have to work on this topic. My theoretical underpinning is the expansion of the role theory...

My research areas - just a brief overview

11/09/2011 18:33
My research areas -- a strong focus on Research on Higher Education and Faculty Development a) Digital Didactics - Designing learning supported by new technologies - Studying sociotechnical-didactical systems - Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning (CSCL) - How to 'teach' creativity? b)...

An overview about my research projects are here....

10/24/2011 14:57
Please have a look at to read more about my research projects.

Why "Design"?

I am a 'design researcher' - why do I focus my research studies on sociotechnical-learning design?

06/22/2011 12:26
Last week, a person asked: You are actually a sociologist? Why do you focus on 'design'? A good question! New technologies, for example mobile devices such as smart phones and tablet PC’s, but also Web 2.0 applications like Facebook, or mobile devices (e.g. iPads) give teachers, instructors etc....

ICT, media and learning (ICTML) --- Designing the Interdependencies

... between

  1. teaching and learning approaches ("Didaktik" designs the relations between instruction and construction),
  2. use of social technology (e.g., Web 2.0, social software, Social Media) and
  3. teaching and learning cultures (in different disciplines, subjects, department,...).

Connecting people and different research fields; sharing ideas and communities – I want to enable opportunites to reflect ideas, concrete prototypes and open research questions regarding ICT, media and learning subtitled with “Creative Learning Cultures – Educational Innovations in a Web 2.0 World”.

Open research questions are

  • How to reshape/design (develop & evaluate) Technology-enhanced (creative, collaborative) learning successfully? What does “successful” mean? What elements can be designed (technical applications, didactical approaches, etc.)? What are appropriate methods (e.g., how to apply Design-based research)?
  • What can we learn from "others" when to foster creativity in teaching and learning (enhanced by Social Media)?
  • How to restructure teaching and learning in a) higher education, and b) computer-supported collaborative learning at the workplace? (see CSCL@Work => go to


First answers are given in my publications. Read more... publications

 Further research activities including projects and teaching courses can be found online on the "older" website hosted by HDZ, TU Dortmund university, where I was Assistant Professor. See details here...