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Public defence: Dinavence Arinaitwe

Dinavence Arinaitwe will defend her thesis: “Learning through Collaboration between Vocational Teacher Training Institutions and Workplaces” for the degree of PhD in Educational Sciences for Teacher Education.

Trial Lecture

The trial lecture starts at 10.00. Please do not enter the room after the lecture has begun.
Title: "Discuss the implications of relevant learning theories for action research in vocational education and training.”

Public defence

The candidate will defend her thesis at 12.00. Please do not enter the room after the defence has begun.

The defence is also available via zoom

Join the webinar (

Passcode: 211022

Webinar ID: 667 2554 8349

Title of the thesis: “Learning through Collaboration between Vocational Teacher Training Institutions and Workplaces”.

Ordinary opponents

Leader of the public defence

Vice Dean for Education Finn Aarsæther, OsloMet – Oslo Metropolitan University


How to oppose ex auditorio

Please inform the leader of the defense if you wish to oppose ex auditorio during the break, before the second opponent begins. 

For questions regarding the trial lecture and public defense, contact the PhD administration at the faculty.

Publication of the approved PhD thesis

Request a copy (PDF) of the PhD thesis by e-mail. Include the name of the PhD candidate.

  • Abstract

    The overall aim of this study is to explore ways in which the master’s in vocational pedagogy (MVP) study programme can support learning through institution–workplace collaboration (IWC).

    The study was guided by the following research questions:

    • i) What are the current collaborative activities in the MVP programme, and in which ways do these activities support learning for the students involved?
    • ii) What challenges to learning do the collaborative activities present?
    • iii) What strategies and practices can support learning through institution–workplace collaboration?

    Basing on these research questions, I utilized in-depth, semi-structured individual and focus group interviews to gather qualitative data from mentors, supervisors, students, MVP administrators, two VTIs and four workplaces from central and eastern parts of Uganda.

    Reflecting on theoretical concepts from Engeström’s cultural–historical activity theory (CHAT), data were analysed and the findings for each research question disseminated in journals as Articles 1, 2 and 3.

    The findings in Article 1, Arinaitwe and Sannerud (2019), indicate that field expeditions and action research projects are the principal collaborative activities incorporated in the MVP programme to support ‘back and forth’ learning from workplaces.

    Through interactions and sharing practices, these activities promote learning by solving problems encountered at work and by doing real-life tasks.

    Considering Article 2, Arinaitwe et al. (2022) the findings show that the challenges manifesting as discursive contradictions occurred in different phases of implementing collaborative activities.

    In the planning and implementation phase, contradictions were linked to short timeframes for collaborative activities, unsynchronized activity plans and contradictory working cultures.

    In the supervision of learning, contradictions emanated from the lack of a common understanding of the objectives and work methods of the collaborative activities arising from the contradictory working cultures.

    In particular, the lack of workplace mentors and supervision guidelines at the workplaces as well as the recruitment process of action research project supervisors affected the supervision of learning in the collaborative activities.

    Supervision of learning was also hampered by short timeframes for documenting theses, delayed feedback and contradictory guidance.

    A lack of feedback to actors, the absence of a collaboration focal person and a lack of government policy limited participation in collaborative activities.

    These challenges were observed to lessen the focus on the MVP students’ learning, which ultimately affected the quality of work produced and interfered with the implementation of collaborative activities.

    In Article 3, Arinaitwe (2021), the findings reveal a need for involving actors in timely planning and increasing the duration for collaborative activities as well as engaging students in the tracking of MVP activities in fostering the institutional capacity to plan and implement collaborative activities.

    To strengthen the supervision of learning in collaborative activities, the following strategies and practices were identified: a need to engage workplace mentors and facilitators in learning at the MVP, joint supervision and collaborative development of supervision guidelines, organizing workshops and symposiums to equip and orient actors with MVP work methods and practices, and the recruiting of full-time mentors and equipping them with information and communication technology equipment.

    For increased participation in collaborative activities and fostering the communication between partners, the findings show an exigency to institute government and institutional policies on IWC, instituting a collaboration focal person, initiate collaboration based on a signed memorandum of understanding and providing feedback to collaborating actors.

    To sum up, the research findings reveal that the current collaborative activities incorporated in the MVP programme to support ‘back and forth’ students’ learning from the workplace were field expeditions and action research projects.

    However, discursive contradictions—conflicts, dilemmas, double binds and critical conflicts—were encountered in the implementation of these collaborative activities.

    This study therefore recommends a reorganization, review and re- planning of the pedagogical orientation of the MVP programme in resolving the challenges arising from learning through collaboration between the vocational teacher training institutions and workplaces.