The first Helsinki Summer School on Activity Theory and Formative Interventions (HSS-AFTI) took place in 2010 with participants from 9 countries. The second course, in 2011, attracted students from 13 countries, and the third course brought students together from 16 countries and five continents in 2012. Following wide interest and many requests, the course will be organised for the fourth time int the summer 2013.
Aims and format
The Helsinki Summer School course is based on a 20-year tradition of research and teaching conducted in the Center for Research on Activity, Development and Learning (CRADLE). The course will introduce cultural-historical activity theory – rooted in the legacy of Vygotsky and Leont'ev – as it has been developed and applied to learning and development in educational and work practices in Finland and other countries.
HSS-ATFI provides interdisciplinary theoretical and methodological tools for studying the rapid and profound changes in the world of work, organisations, and technology. It focuses on the following areas:
Lectures, workshops and discussions will take place with leading Finnish and international scholars in the field of activity theory and with scholars representing approaches closely related to activity theory. The director of CRADLE, Yrjö Engeström, will be actively involved in these lectures and discussions. Excursions to work organizations and research facilities will allow students to learn from ongoing developmental work research interventions conducted by researchers and practitioners in Helsinki. Tutored small group tasks are designed to acquaint the students with core literature and to formulate their interests for engaging in more demanding texts and studies in the future.
The course is based on lectures by leading scholars in the field of activity theory. Tutored small group tasks guide the students in core literature and help them to formulate their interests for engaging with more demanding texts and studies in the future. Excursions to work organisations and research facilities allow students to learn from ongoing developmental work research interventions conducted by researchers and practitioners. Multiple informal sessions with CRADLE researchers give participants a chance to ask questions and establish contacts for future collaboration.
The final assignment entails of developing a proposal for an intervention research project based on activity theory and focused on a concrete societal and/or educational challenge. The proposal is presented and discussed at the end of the course.
The course is evaluated on a Pass (P) / Fail (F) basis.
Dr Annalisa Sannino is Academy Research Fellow at the CRADLE and IBS, University of Helsinki. Her work focuses on the dynamics through which discourse leads to envisioning and implementing material changes in educational and work activities. She is the leading editor of Learning and Expanding with Activity Theory (co-edited with Harry Daniels and Kris Gutierrez) published in 2009 by Cambridge University Press. She also served as leading editor of a 2008 special issue of the Journal of Educational Change and of a 2011 special issue of the journal Theory and Psychology. In 2012 she guest edited a special issue of the journal Mind, Culture and Activity.
Monica Lemos is a PhD candidate in the doctoral programme on Developmental Work Research and Adult Education (DWRAE) at the University of Helsinki. She has an M.A. in Applied Linguistics from the Catholic University of São Paulo, Brazil. In São Paulo she also worked as a language course co-ordinator at Brazilian Central Bank, in co-operation with Brasília University. Her doctoral dissertation is an activity-theoretical study of educational management, contradictions and instruments in the Brazilian educational system.
Professors Yrjö Engeström, Reijo Miettinen, Jaakko Virkkunen and other CRADLE researchers
The application period for the Helsinki Summer School will start in the beginning of the year 2014.
This course is designed for BA, MA and doctoral students aiming at careers in advanced human resource development, in workplace learning, and, more generally, in organisational development and change management. Also professionals in related areas are welcome.
Learn what last year's students said about this course.
University of Helsinki, City Center Campus
The closest accommodation option is Eurohostel, 20 min. from the course location on foot.