Learning by Developing – the future pedagogical operating model

Learning by Developing (LbD) operating model is working life oriented. It’s a practical method, recognized as ”a remarkable pedagogical innovation” here in Laurea. This means that students, academic staff, working life experts and clients (as end users) work together in real working life related research and development projects. The outcomes are seen as new innovations (products, services, processes, models and working life cultures) and new competences. I knew about this before but become especially interested in it after Encounters15 conference, when one of the topic was about seniori365.fi, a fruitful result of LbD approach between Laurea University, Omnia,  Aalto University’s Small Business Center and city of Espoo. The serivce received an international Best Practice 2015 award by the international Design for All Foundation.

In finding more about the application of LbD method in Leppavaara campus, I set up a meeting with Ms. Leena Saariko, my Finnish lecturer to ask her some questions about teachers’ teaching habit and assessment pattern. Right to what I was thinking, Optima seems to be an obslete system, it was not designed for out-of-classroom activities, so as a result, not an effective tool for this hands-on method. Not many teachers and students use as they find its exercises module not accessible. I did asked about the online service promentor.fi, which allows students to take different language courses with their UAS account. Ms. Leena mentioned the service was not that useful previously and she didn’t use it at all but her colleagues, who teaches intermediate Swedish course used it from time to time. So is there a gap here in providing a management tool for teachers to apply LbD into their teaching effectively?

What can be the future of education? I would say it is performance-based assessment, when students are assessed based on their true capabilities, not their efforts in memorizing exam materials. Furthermore, all of these activities should not be bound by 4 school walls, but are taken place in an open environment, where the learning process and application of new knowledges happen simultaneously. The changes need to be driven by combined efforts of schools and innovation companies. Smart technology utilization is the answer.

Helsinki 03.2015


Encounters15 – Reflections about the conference

Three days just passed terribly fast. Great talks, accompanied by great people, and of course, great food. I was so sad leaving Porvoo yesterday and until now, it’s overwhelming when I think about what I’ve accomplished and how it affect me personally.

My wonderful friend, Linh, was also in the organizing team of this conference so I was very happy when she agreed to host me. As a student, I’ve always loved to explore the student life in another Finnish city and this is a great chance! Linh’s apartment is around 3 km away from the city center so it takes 40 minutes to walk, or 20 minutes by bikes from her place to the campus. And in the winter they all have to walk because it’s too slippery to ride! So city kids, be grateful if you can take a convenient train/ bus to school. Luckily for me, the spring weather was lovely for a long walk. Nevertheless, it still substantially increased my appreciation for the condition in Helsinki.

To be amongst the think tankers, who are enthusiastically improving the society through their practices and researches, is so inspiring. It further reinforced my determination to build a successful career to help more people around me. The two conference days were packed with insightful researches, diverse viewpoints and a plethora of practical knowledges and ideas. I followed theme 3, which was about integrating education and RDI for empowered wellness and life-style. Gamification in researches and education was emphasized, which is a great news for my other project. I also collected interests and valuable comments when presenting my idea about home-farming. There will be so many things to be done but it’s gonna be so exciting.

Some pictures from the conference:

IMG_2051[1] IMG_2060[1] IMG_2048[1]IMG_2062[1]

Helsinki, 03.2015

From Phoebe with ❤


Today marks the start of a beautiful summer with a Runeberg torte on a sunny terrace


It is also the first day of Encounters15 conference and is also the first time I take part in an academic conference as a participant. I’m so thrilled for what’s coming in the next 3 days as the organizing committee had sent me the program a few days back. Even though I didn’t really have time to check in details but I had a glimpse that we’re gonna have a tour around the old town of Porvoo. And then some exhibitions by the students and some artists, dinner etc… Oh wait, but I haven’t told you why I’m so excited about this conference right? I’ll ramble a bit about the reasons:

  • Encounters15 is about … Unexpected Encounters, it is more than lectures, workshops and the general program! As it’s best, it is about insightful encounters with people you might have met along the way but also new, interesting connections and new ideas. Additionally it involves atmosphere, good food, picturesque surroundings in Porvoo and new memories. Have a peek at their trailer
  • I was told by some respected professor some time ago that I could not attend an event because “they were all too academic for you”. That was when I add another item on my checklist: To attend a conference where people all talk about academic stuff and not doing it. Okay the latter part was not there but basically you all know what I mean. When somebody says that you can’t do something, it’s time for you to do “that” thing.
  • Last but not least, I now realize that writing and travelling are best when they are paid for 😀

At the end of the day, the event further embedded my memories with a spectacular light show: the Aurora Borealis ❤ ❤ ❤


It’s a wonderful day.

Porvoo 03.2015

From Phoebe with love ❤