Norwegian version

Public defense: Nenad Pavel

Nenad Pavel will defend his thesis: “Education for Resilience with Emerging Technologies - A Qualitative Study on the Learner – Media Relationship in Product Design Education” for the degree of PhD in Educational Sciences for Teacher Education.

Nenad Pavel is a PhD student at the PhD programme in Educational Sciences for Teacher Education .

Trial lecture

The trial lecture starts at 10:00 in Zoom.

Title: ”Postphenomenological approach, how can it contribute to the design education and beyond?”

Zoom link to the trial lecture and public defense (

Webinar passcode: 453309

Public defense

The candidate will defend his thesis at 12:15.

The candidate will defend his thesis, entitled "Education for Resilience with Emerging Technologies - A Qualitative Study on the Learner – Media Relationship in Product Design Education".

Zoom link to the trial lecture and public defense (

Webinar passcode: 453309

Ordinary opponents

Leader of the public defense


Digital defense information

Due to limitations on physical participation as a consequence of the coronavirus pandemic, the public defense will be conducted as a webinar on the zoom digital platform.

The link to the trial lecture and digital defense in Zoom will be available via link on this page. OsloMet students and employees use OsloMet account ( Others can download Zoom ( or use a browser.

How to oppose ex auditorio

Please send your question to the host during the break, before the second opponent begins. Raise your digital hand by clicking "Participants" at the bottom of the zoom window and choose "Raise Hand" if you want to voice the question yourself after both opponents have finished their questions. The technical administrator will ask to activate your microphone. Click Yes.

Publication of the approved PhD thesis

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

  • Abstract

    Title: Education for Resilience with Emerging Technologies - A Qualitative Study on the Learner – Media Relationship in Product Design Education

    This doctoral dissertation explores how emerging technologies, especially 3D printing, can affect pedagogy. The purpose is to provide practical and theoretical knowledge that can strengthen sustainable education. The aim of this work is to provide a perspective about learning and pedagogy considering the disruption caused by emerging technologies. It explores both practical and theoretical questions. The practical questions address issues of formal education and pedagogy, which are challenged by emerging technologies. The theoretical question addresses issues around how learning could be explained in the context of these technologies. The primary research question, therefore, is this: How can resilient learning be assisted by emerging technologies in product design education?

    The research mainly relied on qualitative methods that included participant observation, artefact analysis, and content analysis of lived situations in formal higher design education settings. However, the study also included a variety of methodological approaches, including case studies, action research, hermeneutical text analysis, and design science. The methodologies were changed during the project because there were dissimilar purposes in the different articles, and they reflected different aspects of the problem and the changing positionality of the researcher. The dissertation is written as series of articles collected in a summary.

    There is a need for this research question because formal education deals simultaneously with two trends: standardization in globalized mass education and the need for revisions of curriculum due to the flux of technological changes. Emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality, 3D printing, and others, are characterized by diverse procedural knowledge that yields unpredictable outcomes and yet to be discovered technological applications. Future students will have to deal with ill-structured problems and unpredictable results that will not only present environmental, ethical, and societal challenges but also opportunities that remain to be revealed. This makes it useful for research as an educational technology and a learning medium in formal education. 

    Now that emerging technologies are becoming ever more present in educational situations, there is a need to research how to teach by using them. Thus, it is crucial to better understand which pedagogical approaches are suitable in these learning and teaching activities. There is also a need for a more general understanding about how this learning can be more sustainable as the technologies are perpetually evolving. The research provides novel insights into how technological media affect learning, what the very notion of learning might mean in these new technological contexts, and consequently the effects of this perspective on design pedagogy. Further, the research provides a new perspective on design as a discipline, which is less focused on the designer and design conception, but rather gives an ecological perspective on design activities.

    3D printers and the other developing technologies are versatile. They are characterized by innovative handling processes and, as yet, represent undetermined applications. The design studio pedagogical setting provides an environment in which 3D printing can be researched in the context of sustainable higher education where this versatility of the emerging technologies can be explored. The design studio is formal education, but is closest to its informal counterpart, makerspace. This is because of its focus on open and free learning, which is characterized by divergent and convergent phases in learning and frequent use of media. 

    A knowledge gap has emerged, however, as 3D printers were not previously researched as a medium for resilient learning. As the literature review of this dissertation reveals, most of the studies have focused on using 3D printing as the medium for efficacy in teaching and learning, as well as different applications of 3D printers and emerging technologies for the existing curricula. This knowledge gap is practical in the sense that there is a need for new pedagogical approaches for resilient learning. The gap is also theoretical as it explores media as the key factor of learning instead of emphasizing the importance of the learner and the teaching content.

    This dissertation proposes the adoption of relational ontological and postphenomenological approaches to provide more adequate answers about learning in unpredictable technological contexts in formal education. In the relational view, an individual becomes a learner when she participates in socio-technological arrangements. As media becomes transparent to learners, they manage to develop and stabilize new routines and anticipate the outcomes of their intentions. They finally manage to utilize media for intended purposes for the group and organization. In relational ontology, technology is seen as a medium that amplifies or diminishes learners’ intentions in the rearrangement processes. Consequently, pedagogy is defined by rearranging relationships among learners as well as other stakeholders in a learning situation, which is mediated by technology. From this perspective, the role of pedagogy is the facilitation of the learners’ connection to their socio-technological environment and resilience to changes in it.