Comparing antecedents for Norwegian, Swedish, and Finnish youths’ agentic beliefs in informal online learning

  • Eyvind Elstad University of Oslo
  • Thomas Arnesen Western Norway University of Applied Sciences
  • Knut Andreas Christophersen Associate professor emeritus
Keywords: agentic beliefs, informal online learning, Finland, Sweden, Norway

Abstract

Technology has become an ever-present factor in virtually every contemporary situation, and digital media has gained a significant role in the lives of young people. This article explores and compares the antecedents for agentic beliefs in informal online learning amongst young people in Norway, Sweden and Finland. The promotion of such agentic beliefs in informal online learning is an important task for school systems that seek to prepare young people for responsible citizenship, capable of directing their own lives and supporting others. A sample of 3045 urban Finnish, Swedish and Norwegian students in general study programs (15–17-year-olds) participated in a cross-sectional questionnaire. Structural equation modelling was used for analysis. We discovered that the patterns in some of these relations were astonishingly similar in Sweden, Norway, and Finland. In each of these countries, online culture, defined in terms of free choice and self-actualisation by using internet, is positively associated with agentic beliefs and with time online. A duality in school and internet orientation demonstrates that the educational systems in these three countries face challenges to build bridges between the attitudes of youth and the emphasis on knowledge found in traditional educational subjects. Furthermore, the agentic beliefs of youngsters in these three countries differ depending on the degree to which youths value education.

Author Biographies

Eyvind Elstad, University of Oslo
Professor, Department of teacher education and school research, University of Oslo
Thomas Arnesen, Western Norway University of Applied Sciences
Department of Teacher Education, Assistant professor.
Knut Andreas Christophersen, Associate professor emeritus
Department of Political Science, University of Oslo.
Published
2018-02-24
How to Cite
Elstad, E., Arnesen, T., & Christophersen, K. (2018). Comparing antecedents for Norwegian, Swedish, and Finnish youths’ agentic beliefs in informal online learning. Nordic Journal of Comparative and International Education (NJCIE), 1(2). https://doi.org/10.7577/njcie.2299
Section
Articles