CONNET - Cognitive science and cognitive technology, virtual university studies

What is Connet?

Launched in early 2001, Connet is a joint study programme with 8 participating universities (HY, TKK, TY, TaY, JoY, JY, OY and LaY), whose purpose is to train experts for the new Information Society’s most demanding tasks. The project offers the students enrolled in the participating universities’ basic and subject studies to implement online studies in cognitive science.

What is cognitive science?

Because people’s cognitive actions are extremely important with respect to the planning and use of products, the human dimension must also be taken into account in all product-related processes. The training aims at creating a greater awareness of the human factors required by technology. Cognitive science and its local sciences also form a broad entity that is applicable to a wide range of Information Society needs.

Research focuses on the significance of cognitive phenomena in the development and use of technology as well as the inclusion of cognitive characteristics in technical constructs. Typical cognitive science applications include:

  • usability and interfaces
  • interaction between man and machine
  • object environments
  • communication information networks in theory and practice
  • cognitive ergonomics
  • learning in the virtual community
  • computer-assisted design
  • the human limits of knowledge processing

Cognitive science is a multidisciplinary field of research whose study combines different types of scientific thinking:

  • cognitive science
  • cognitive technology
  • psychology
  • work science
  • data processing science
  • education
  • media education
  • philosophy

What are Connet studies?

The conceptual backdrop for teaching and study includes co-operative learning, problem-based learning, new open learning environments, divided expertise, constructivist learning concepts and students’ self-directed learning. The courses typically include a theory segment of 2 study weeks that students can elect to expand to 5 study weeks with an exercise project segment. Online studies taking place at the Sandbox utilise FLE3 groupware, Zwiki open source software packages, the Internet, E-mail, videotaped lectures transmitted online, as well as video conferencing. Studies are also directed and supported by tutors.

Target group and application

Connet studies are intended for all students enrolled in basic or graduate university courses, as well as open university students interested in cognitive science as well as the development of the interaction between modern technology and people. The performed studies will be assessed according to normal academic criteria and the student can approve the studies as secondary subjects in his or her own faculties. The studies are free of charge for students enrolled in the universities’ basic and graduate courses.

Project’s contact person at the University of Lapland

Professor Raimo Rajala
Faculty of Education
Tel. (016) 341 2413, +358 (0)40 764 3848
E-mail: Raimo.Rajala[at]ulapland.fi