Annual seminar

The FinEd Network organises an annual seminar, which in recent years has been arranged in connection with the FERA Conference on Education. The FinEd seminar acts as the pre‑seminar for the conference.

Focus on Open Science in the Field of Educational Sciences – FinEd preseminar at the FERA Educational Research days, 22 November 2023, Åbo Akademi University

The 2023 preseminar comprised two keynote speeches and a structured workshop on the topics covered in the talks. Although nearly 30 participants had registered, in the end only fifteen made it to the pre-seminar – the covid season was heavily upon us. Dr Sami Syrjämäki (Head of Publications, Federation of Finnish Learned Societies) opened the preseminar with a talk on Contemporary Trends in Scholarly Publishing, followed by Professor Erika Löfström’s (University of Helsinki) talk entitled Open science – open ethics? After a break and some light refreshments, participants reconvened to work on designing their own open science plans in small groups, and finally sharing insights and new ideas with everyone.

We are learning that for many PhD researchers, the opportunity to meet, interact, and network with others who are working on their PhDs is one of the most important things that FinEd can provide, as illustrated by this participant comment:

“I found the seminar interesting, actually more interesting than I had thought in advance because many of the issues are already familiar to me. I wish that there would have been more time for interaction and discussion with other doctoral researchers because that is what made to attend the preseminar in the first place.” – Feedback comment from participant

We will keep the importance of peer connections in mind when planning and implementing future activities.


Values matter in education and research: Exploring the philosophical foundations of Educational Sciences – FinEd preseminar at the FERA Educational Research days, 23 November 2022, University of Oulu

The topic of the FinEd preseminar was chosen based on suggestions received from a questionnaire for doctoral researchers from the autumn of 2021. The preseminar comprised two parts, with Professor Katariina Holma’s (University of Oulu) keynote speech Science, theories, and values arranged in hybrid form, to enable interested parties who could not make it to Oulu in person to participate, too. The keynote was attended by approximately 40 audience members, of whom 15 took part online via zoom. After a lunchbreak, twelve doctoral researchers from different member universities attended the in-person workshop part of the preseminar. For the record, should you come across the term Empathic-Relational-Dialogical Science – it was invented at this workshop by some participants!

“I think we need an interesting keynote who directs participants’ thoughts and reflection towards the topic. The keynote was a spot on.” – Feedback comment from a participant

“I think workshop working as a whole is something we need as doctoral students. In workshops we get to know each other properly and get to share our thoughts on doing a PhD. There could even be more of such activity.” – Feedback comment from a participant


Pre-seminar of the FinEd Network to the FERA 2021 Conference 24 November, University of Jyväskylä/ ONLINE SEMINAR


9:00 – 9:15 Welcome by the head of the FinEd, professor Heli Ruokamo

9:15 – 10:00 Writing for your research community, Paolo Landri, PhD, Senior Researcher of the Institute of Research on Population and Social Policies at National Research Council in Italy (CNR-IRPPS)

10:00 – 10:30 Finding time for PhD: In search of Work-Research(and Life) balance, Lauri Palsa, PhD, Senior adviser, National Audiovisual Institute

10:30 – 11:30 Lunch break

11:30 – 13:00 Paper presentations 


“Digitalisation in education: From various learning contexts to methodologies” Pre-seminar of the FinEd Network to the FERA 2020 Conference 14 December 2020, University of Helsinki

In 2020, the pre-seminar was held online. A total of 21 doctoral students participated in the seminar. Before the paper presentations, Dr. Mona Moisala talked about brain research, Postdoctoral Researcher Mikko Meriläinen about digital gaming and University Lecturer Satu-Maarit Frangou about her doctoral research process. Thanks to all participants! Below you will find the slides of the three talks.

PROGRAM 14 December 2020

12:00 – 12:15 Welcome by the director of the FinEd Heli Ruokamo
12:15 – 12:45 The effects of digitalisation on the developing brain,
Mona Moisala, Ph.D. Heltti Ltd. SLIDES
12:45 – 13:00 Break
13:00 – 13:30 Beyond the numbers: studying young people’s digital gaming, Mikko Meriläinen, Postdoctoral researcher, University of Tampere SLIDES
13:30 – 14:00 Doctoral studies – no rose without a thorn, Satu-Maarit Frangou, University Lecturer, University of Lapland SLIDES
14:00 – 14:15 Break
14:15 – 16.30 Paper presentations (15min + 5min) Presenter*
14:15 – 14.35 The Social Music Education System (Sistema) Finland, Maija Puromies* & Antti Juvonen, University of Eastern Finland
14.35 – 14.55 Students’ perceptions of the long-term impacts of participating in an intercultural storytelling exchange, Oona Piipponen, University of Eastern Finland
14:55 – 15:15 The relation between learning and epistemic emotions in upper secondary school science, Elisa Vilhunen*, Miikka Turkkila, Jari Lavonen, Katariina Salmela-Aro & Kalle Juuti, University of Helsinki
15:15 – 15:30 Break
15:30 – 15:50 Coaching pedagogy for synchronous collaborative online learning: Desires and sense of perceived learning by learners, Päivi Timonen, University of Lapland
15:50 – 16:10 Finnish student teachers’ perceptions of their development of  21st-century competencies, Shuanghong Jenny Niu* & Hannele Niemi, University of Helsinki
16:10 – 16:30 ”Peer tutoring as a means of supporting digital skills in older adults”,
Lotta Aavikko*, Kaisa Pihlainen & Eija Kärnä, University of Eastern Finland


Mixed methods – Always Better?
Pre-seminar of the FinEd Network to the FERA 2019 Conference 20 November 2019, University of Eastern Finland/ Joensuu Campus

In 2019, the Finnish Multidisciplinary Doctoral Training Network on Educational Sciences (FinEd)
organised its annual seminar for the doctoral researchers in Joensuu. The pre-seminar is entitled Mixed methods – always better?

Based on the analysis of Finnish educational doctoral dissertations published 2010–2016, mixed methods approach was well represented among 605 dissertations. Depending on the research questions, combination of qualitative and quantitative data may be very promising in solving wicked problems of the explored topics in the field of education. Several international textbooks on research methodology warn also about shortcomings that may be inherent in the mixing. What is the expected added value of mixed methods approach and how to care for the advantages of it in practice?

In the pre-seminar, Dr Lucila Carvalho (Massey University, New Zealand) presented in her keynote lecture on different models of mixed methods, and gave examples of mixed methods research projects.

In the afternoon session, the participants discussed  issues related to mixed methods such as the advantages and challenges of using the method, the underlying paradigms and the popularity of the method in current research.