PLU8013 - Theoretical frameworks and ethics in educational research


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Assignment
Grade: Passed / Not Passed

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
Assignment 100/100

Course content

The course focuses on theoretical frameworks and traditions in academic research, and attends to researcher positioning, professional research, knowledge forms in research and development work related to education and research ethics. Traditions included in the course are phenomenology, hermeneutics, structuralism, poststructuralism, pragmatism, postmodernism, feminist epistemologies, Indigenous methodologies, posthumanism, affect studies, and new materialisms.

Learning outcome


The candidate

  • has outstanding knowledge of various theoretical frameworks and epistemological issues and positions
  • can evaluate interpretations and research designs in educational research, according to theoretical and philosophical perspectives
  • has thorough insight into forms of knowledge that are relevant to research related to education and the teacher profession
  • can consider ethical opportunities and challenges related to education research


The candidate

  • can discuss how theoretical positioning is important for what kind of insights research about the school and the teacher profession can develop
  • can identify and handle ethical opportunities and challenges in research related to education
  • can formulate and in a qualified way discuss questions related to education

General competence:

The candidate

  • can identify and handle ethical issues in research within their area
  • can relate theoretical and epistemological positioning to different research designs
  • can participate in debates on theory in profession-oriented educational research at international levels
  • can convey research through recognized national and international publication channels

Learning methods and activities

Session-based course. Each seminar session goes over 2-3 days. Teaching and learning activities include lectures, discussions and student presentations, individually and in study groups with the course literature. Each student designs their own reading list according to given criteria and includes the mandatory literature in the course. The course participants are expected to be conducting research projects while taking the course. The course requirement for attendance is 80%.

Mandatory activities:

  • Compulsory attendance: 80%
  • 4 work requirements: attendance in study group with 2 jointly written submissions, 1 individual written essay, oral presentation and opposition to a fellow student's work.

Assignments can be submitted in Norwegian or English.

Compulsory assignments

  • Two written assignments
  • One written paper with oral presentation
  • Opposition to fellow student's presentation / assignment
  • Attendance 80%

Further on evaluation

Assessment: Individual term paper. Grade: Passed / Not Passed. Weighting: 100/100. Four work requirements must be completed to hand in the exam. Compulsory attendance: 80%. The exam paper is an article that must have a clear theoretical /philosophical research question. In the exam, the student must use their own reading list for the course (they may also include items in the extended course reading list if needed). The exam paper may also analyze and discuss the students’ own ongoing empirical research material as long as the theoretical discussions are the focus of the article. Mandatory activities from previous semesters can be approved by the department. In case of postponed exam, the examination must be based on completed work requirements from the semester the teaching took place.

Text submitted for assessment in the required academic coursework may be included in the thesis in revised form.

For a retake of a failed exam, the candidate can submit a revised version of a previously submitted text in the course. If the submission is a revised version of a previously submitted text, this must be clarified in the text.

Specific conditions

Required previous knowledge

Master’s Degree or equivalent. PhD students are prioritized upon admission. Students are expected to engage in their own, on-going research project. Admission restrictions*: The course is limited to a maximum of 25 students, where 6 spots are reserved for applicants from other institutions affiliated with NorTED ( If there are less than 5 applicants, the Department of Teacher Education reserves the right to cancel the course. * Applicants will be ranked based on the following criteria and deadline for applications can be found here:

Course materials

Curriculum/Reading List of approximately 800 pages

More on the course

Version: 1
Credits:  10.0 SP
Study level: Doctoral degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  AUTUMN 2024

Term no.: 2
Teaching semester:  SPRING 2025

Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Teacher Education
  • School Development
Contact information
Course coordinator: Lecturer(s):

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Teacher Education


Examination arrangement: Assignment

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Autumn ORD Assignment 100/100 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
Spring ORD Assignment 100/100 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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