PhD Days

Scholarship holders at USN's PhD in Culture Studies and PhD in pedagogical resources and learning processes come together with scholarship holders at Oslo Metropolitan University's PhD Programme in Educational Sciences for Teacher Education. Interested students from other PhD programs at USN and OsloMet are also welcome.

26 Oct

Praktisk informasjon

USN's PhD in pedagogical resources and learning processes (PEDRES) are responsible for this year's implementation of the annual event PhD-days which takes place every autumn as collaboration between USN and OsloMet.

The purpose of the PhD Days is to bring together all PhD students at the PhD programme in Culture Studies (USN), the PhD programme in pedagogical resources and learning processes (USN) and the PhD Programme in Educational Sciences for Teacher Education (Oslo Metropolitan University), as well as interested students from other PhD programs at USN and OsloMet, to learn about and discuss key challenges in educational research.

Distinguished researchers from different areas of educational research
and experts in methodology are invited to give keynote lectures and to participate in workshops. The PhD Days include thematic sessions to discuss research design, methodology and methods, as well as sessions on academic writing and publishing, writing the extended summary and writing a literature review as part of a PhD thesis.


Day 1 – Wednesday October 26th 

Main location: Room  A3502

  • 09:00-09:30 – Registration
  • 09:30-09:45 – Welcome     
  • 09:45-11:00 – Lecture 1: Tine Prøitz On the educational research and education policy nexus – and our readiness for education complexity
  • 11:00-11:15 – Coffee Break
  • 11:15-12:30 – Lecture 2: Marte Blikstad Balas Research design in your PhD:  key pitfalls during planning, data collection and when communicating results from your work to the scientific community
  • 12:30-13:30 – Lunch
  • 13:30-15:30 – Parallel Workshops A-D
    • A – Location: Room U2502: Tony Burner: Publishing in journals – making the right decisions and getting through the process
    • B – Location: Room U3505: Halla B. Holmarsdottir: Developing your research integrity 
    • C  Location: Room U4504: Jorunn Spord Borgen: Helhet og sammenheng i artikkelbaserte avhandlinger 
    • D – Location: Room U4505: Siri Nergaard: Struktur og form i akademiske tekster 
  • 15:30-16:00  Serving of light refreshments 
  • 16:00-17:00 – Lecture 3: Ola Erstad Conceptions of future competences and implications for education
  • 17:15 – Dinner 

Day 2 – Thursday  October 27th 

Main location: Room A3502

  • 09:00-09:30 – Registration
  • 09:30-09:45  Welcome
  • 09:45-11:00 – Lecture 1: Thomas de Lange Teaching competence as a researcher: developing teaching portfolios in relation to SoTL (Scholarship of Teaching and learning)
  • 11:00-11:15 – Coffee Break
  • 11:15-12:30 – Lecture 2: Elizabeth Stokoe The research - engagement - impact circle: Doing science in public
  • 12:30-13:30  Lunch
  • 13:30-15:30 – Parallel Workshops A-D
    • A – Location: Room U2502: Fazilat Siddiq: Literature Review: Types, Why and How    
    • B – Location: Room U3505: Constantinos Xenofontos: Collecting and analysing qualitative data 
    • C – Location: Room U4504: Iben Brinch: Kreativ akademisk skriving 
    • D – Location: Room U4505: Meryl Sønderby Lillenes: Karriereutvikling for stipendiater – ting å tenke over 
  • 15:30-16:00 – Serving of light refreshments 
Abstracts Day 1 - 26 October


  1. Tine Prøitz: On the educational research and education policy nexus – and our readiness for education complexity 
    In this presentation varied aspects of the education research and education policy nexus will be explored. In particular the issue of how we often consider the relationship between policy and practice as linear and what this means for our research will be discussed.
  2. Marte Blikstad Balas: Research design in your PhD:  key pitfalls during planning, data collection and when communicating results from your work to the scientific community
    In her talk, Blikstad-Balas will discuss why it is so important to have an overall research design in your PhD, and not just a design for each article, substudy or data set you may be working with. She will highlight key pitfalls concerning research design that can happen during different stages of the PhD - from planning to the final writing of the extended abstract (kappe) or monograph. There will be concrete examples and guidelines you can use to assess your overall research design. This may sound like a nerdy and technical aspect of the PhD, but according to Blikstad-Balas the research design is the very heart of any dissertation - and she will show you the what, how and why of good research designs.
  3. Ola Erstad: Conceptions of future competences and implications for education
    During last two decades conceptions of competences framed within perspectives of education and learning have emerged, such as digital competences, digital literacies, and 21st century skills. Many of these initiatives point towards future orientations of what citizens need to know and be able to handle. This presentation will discuss some of these initiatives, their backgrounds and how research can inform us about these developments, especially related to digitalisation of our societies and the possibilities and challenges this raises for teachers and students. Further, I will draw out some implications these developments of future competences have on education and learning, and for research. 


  • A: Tony Burner – Publishing in journals – making the right decisions and getting through the process
    How do you make the best choices when it comes to choosing journals for publication, writing a cover letter, following up a submission, revising a manuscript etc.? What do reviewers look for? In this session we we’ll unpack the black box of publishing and review process.
  • B: Halla B. Holmarsdottir – Developing your research integrity 
    Ethics in science requires researchers to pay due attention to the effects on their research participants and to the wider society. Thus, ensuring that research ethics are abided by serves to put science on track to be trustworthy, reproducible and sustainable. Research Integrity means conducting research in such a way that allows others to have confidence and trust in the methods and the findings of the research. It relates both to the scientific integrity of conducted research and to the professional integrity of researchers. As such, research integrity aims at providing a comprehensive framework for scientists as to how to carry out their work within accepted ethical frameworks as well as following good scientific practice.
  • C: Jorunn Spord Borgen – Helhet og sammenheng i artikkelbaserte avhandlinger 
    I denne workshopen skal vi arbeide med hvordan planlegge for – og arbeide med, artikkelbaserte avhandlinger og kappe i phd-prosjekter.    
  • D: Siri Nergaard – Struktur og form i akademiske tekster
    Hvordan kan man arbeide konkret med struktur og form i akademiske tekster? Hvordan arbeide med forskjellige strukturer for å oppnå gode resultater og variasjon? Og hvordan gi akademiske tekster en god form gjennom språk og stil? Disse temaene vil diskuteres gjennom analyse av noen eksempeltekster og utprøving av egne og andre ideer.
Abstracts Day 2 – 27 October


  1. Thomas de Lange Teaching competence as a researcher: developing teaching portfolios in relation to SoTL (Scholarship of Teaching and learning)
    The presentation addresses what teaching portfolios are defined as and what function these have in the documentation of teaching qualifications for researchers in a Norwegian higher education context. The presentation will relate the developing of portfolios to perspectives on scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) as a systematic approach and conceptualisation of documented teaching. 
  2. Elizabeth Stokoe The research - engagement - impact circle: Doing science in public
    In this talk, I will talk about the process, benefits, and pitfalls of doing research in public. Drawing on my own science communication experience as a researcher and several times industry fellow, as well as supporting those across the university in all disciplines to understand the research-engagement-impact cycle, I will give examples, hints, and tips for those wanting to co-produce research with non-academic collaborators and work in across academic and industry alike.


  • A: Fazilat Siddiq  Systematic Literature Review: What, Why and How
    In this workshop we will discuss the traditional literature reviews and systematic literature reviews, focusing on the importance and benefits of both in research studies. Moreover, how a systematic review can be conducted will be showcased.
  • B: Constantinos Xenofontos  Collecting and analysing qualitative data
    In this workshop, we will look at qualitative data collection and analysis. Specifically, we will focus on interviews, with emphasis on developing an interview protocol, conducting interviews, and using thematic analysis for finding answers to our research questions.
  • C: Iben Brinch  Kreativ akademisk skriving
    Hvordan kan akademikeren bruke skrivingen som en ressurs for forskning, tenkning og for å utvikle seg selv som fagperson? I løpet av dette verkstedet skal vi diskutere og prøve ut ulike former for skriving som måter å endre handlekraften og handlingsrommet for den individuelle akademikeren og for det enkelte fagfeltet.
  • D: Meryl Sønderby Lillenes – Karriereutvikling for stipendiater  ting å tenke over
    Start or continue to plan you research career with a 0, 1, 3, 5 and 10 years perspective (you will receive a handout to sketch on individually) followed by plenary discussion on opportunities, challenges, the how’s and why’s e.g.


  • Marte Blikstad Balas, University of OsloMarte Blikstad Balas
    Blikstad-Balas is professor at the Department of teacher education and school research at the University of Oslo. She is also Vice Director of the Nordic Centre of Excellence QUINT- Quality in Nordic Schools.  She teaches the obligatory PhD courses in Research Design and Qualitative Methods for the Faculty of Education, as well as the Methods courses at Master level. Blikstad-Balas uses a range of research methods in her own research on how texts (analogue and digital) are used in classroom settings, for example video data, interviews, surveys and document analyses. She is the Editor in Chief of the Nordic Journal of Literacy Research. 
  • Jorunn Spord Borgen, University of South-Eastern NorwayJorunn Spord Borgen
    Spord Borgen is an experienced educational researcher and teacher educator, and has supervised and taught at master's and PhD programs at OsloMet, the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, Western Norway University of Applied Sciences and USN. Her expertise is studies of the practical and aesthetic subjects in general and physical education and arts and crafts in particular, and the relationship between politics, professional development and practice in kindergarten, primary and secondary education and in higher education.
  • Iben Brinch, University of South-Eastern NorwayIben Brinch
    Brinch is Associate Professor at the Department of Languages and Literature Studies. She is the leader of a research group for text in culture and education at USN. Her academic interests are centered on modern rhetoric and non-fiction writing. She has edited the anthology Kreativ akademisk skriving (Creative non-fiction writing) in 2019. She is co-editor of the journal Kairos, which disseminates research on rhetorical topics, and also editorial member of the scientific, international journal IARTEM e-journal.


  • Tony Burner, University of South-Eastern NorwayTony Burner,
    Tony Burner is professor at the Department of Languages and Literature Studies. His main research interests are English education, classroom assessment, R&D work (including formative interventions), diversity/multilingualism and teacher mentoring/teacher professional development. He wrote his PhD dissertation on formative assessment of writing in English and has published scholarly articles about educational change, student-centered learning, writing assessment, portfolio assessment, peer assessment, classroom management and diversity/multilingualism, in addition to book chapters about formative assessment in foreign languages, multilingualism, classroom observation techniques, and teacher mentoring in the context of English language teaching. 
  • Ola Erstad, University of Oslo and University of South-Eastern NorwayOla Erstad
    Ola Erstad is professor at the Department of Education, UiO. He is a highly ranked researcher with a long-standing record of leading collective research efforts, and with an international impact within the field of ‘media/digital literacy’ and ‘learning lives’. He has published on issues of technology and education, especially on ‘media literacy’ and ‘digital competence’, and on formal and informal learning.
    Erstad has been leading several large-scale research projects and research networks funded by the Norwegian Research Council, Nordforsk and the EU. He has been leader of a research group at the Faculty of Education, Oslo, called ‘TransAction-learning, knowing and identity in the information society’ and has been leading several research projects funded by the Norwegian Research Council. He has also been leader of a Nordic network of researchers on learning across contexts (NordLAC), as well as being involved in several international networks and projects. He has been elected as Chair for the Scientific Advisory Committee for Science Europe (2016-2018), and Vice-Chair for the COST Action of ‘The digital literacy and multimodal practices of young children’ (2015-2018). From 2012-2014 he was Scientific Director of NATED - National Graduate School in Educational Research (funded by the Norwegian Research Council). He has been visiting scholar/professor at the University of Southern-Denmark, University of Hong Kong, UC San Diego.
  • Halla B. HolmarsdottirOslo Metropolitan UniversityHalla B. Holmarsdottir
    Holmarsdottir is Professor and former Vice-Dean of Research at the Faculty of Education and International Studies, Oslo Metropolitan University, Norway. Currently she is the scientific coordinator of a large-scale European Research project funded by Horizon 2020 (Grant Agreement no. 870548) entitled The Impact of Technological Transformations on the Digital Generation (DigiGen). Overall her research experience is based within the field of Comparative and International Education and includes ethnographic fieldwork with children and young people, scientific coordination and collaboration in cross-national and interdisciplinary research teams, supervision of junior researchers, and co-editing and reviewing of scientific publications. More specifically, her research draws on interdisciplinary approaches. 
  • Thomas de Lange, University of South-Eastern NorwayThomas de Lange
    Thomas de Lange is a professor in educational sciences at the Department of Education, University of South-eastern Norway. His research field is in higher education, with emphasis on student learning, peer learning and collegial faculty development. His research thereby emphasises quality work in a tertiary context involving both faculty staff and the development of students learning environments. His researcher also extends into topics on feedback, assessment and supervision at the master’s and Phd-level. His experience as a researcher encompasses participation in and leadership of several externally funded research projects and as an academic developer he has extensive practical experience with quality work in close collaboration with teachers, supervisors and educational leaders.
  • Meryl Sønderby Lillenes, University of South-Eastern NorwayMeryl Sønderby Lillenes
    Meryl is a deputy leader at the institute of pedagogy at USN and has a Ph.D. in neurogenetics. Before USN, she worked as a neuroscientist at UiO/OUS and have substantial experience in research, dissemination, networking e.g. During her Ph.D. and postdoc, she worked actively with improving the quality in research and education at UiO through her position as founder and leader of UiODoc. The goal of UiOdoc was to represent, support and improve the academic, educational and social practices of PhD candidates and postdocs at UiO. She has sat in several steering committees and position of trust contributing to strategic development in education and research at the University as well as on a national level. Experience from her academic career revealed the importance of synergy, interdisciplinary and translational work to move our understanding forward. By bridging e.g. pedagogy and knowledge of our developing brain and underlying biological mechanism we can enrich our understanding on how to give children the best opportunity to learn and prosper. Knowledge, tolerance and sustainable living hold the key to a better future.   
  • Siri Nergaard, University of South-Eastern NorwaySiri Nergaard
    Nergaard is professor of Norwegian and didactics of Norwegian at the Department of Languages and Literary Studies, and Director of the PhD Programme of pedagogical resources and learning processes. Her background is in Semiotics, she has taught at a master programme in publishing at the University of Bologna, Italy, and for years Norwegian language and literature at the University of Florence, Italy. In Norway she has been engaged in teaching and research on nonfiction writing, at the Master programme in nonfiction writing at USN.
  • Tine S. Prøitz, University of South-Eastern NorwayTine S. Prøitz
     Prøitz is a professor in education science and has over the years been leading several research projects on varied types of research-practice and policy-practice nexuses. Her research interests lie within the fields of education policy and education research. Most recently she has been leading the ULF research project 2018-2022 on the developments of the Swedish initiative for practice based education research. Currently Prøitz is the principal investigator of the NRC funded research project CLASS - Comparisons of leadership autonomy in school districts and schools in Norway, Sweden and Germany. She is also leading the national commission on quality assessment and quality development in Norwegian schools.
  • Fazilat Siddiq, University of South-Eastern NorwayFazilat Siddiq
    Siddiq is professor within the field of digitalisation of education. Her main research interests are in the development and measurement of students' digital competence (ICT literacy, 21st Century Skills), with emphasis on communication and collaboration. Her research interests focus also on teachers' Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) and use of ICT in their classroom practices, including studies of ICT integration, 1:1 laptop classrooms, programming skills development and assessment.
  • Elizabeth Stokoe, Loughborough University and University of South-Eastern NorwayElizabeth Stokoe,
    Elizabeth Stokoe is Professor of Social Interaction at Loughborough University, UK and Professor II at USN. She conducts conversation analytic research to understand how talk works - from first dates to medical communication and from sales encounters to hostage negotiation. She has worked as an industry fellow at Typeform and at Deployed. In addition to publishing 150+ scientific papers, she is passionate about science communication, and has given talks at TED, New Scientist, Google, Microsoft, and The Royal Institution, and performed at Latitude and Cheltenham Science Festivals. Her book, Talk: The Science of Conversation, was published by Little, Brown (in 2018) and her co-authored book Crisis Talk was published in July 2022. Her research and biography were featured on BBC Radio 4’s The Life Scientific. During the Covid-19 pandemic she has participated in a behavioural science sub-group of the UK Government’s ‘Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies’ (SAGE) and is a member of Independent SAGE behaviour group. She is a Wired Innovation Fellow and in 2021 was awarded Honorary Fellowship of the British Psychological Society.
  • Constantinos Xenofontos, Oslo Metropolitan UniversityConstantinos Xenofontos
    Xenofontos is associate professor of mathematics education at Oslo Metropolitan University. Prior to this, he worked at the University of Stirling (UK) and the University of Nicosia (Cyprus). His research interests are concerned with sociocultural and sociopolitical issues in mathematics teaching and learning, with an emphasis on teacher education.