Learning Conceptions From a Phenomenographic Approach. Convergences and Differences Between Portuguese and Latin American University Students





learning conceptions, universities, Portuguese and Latin American university students, educational implications


This paper describes a study about the empirical conceptions that a group of Latin American students, attending the same career (Learning sciences/Pedagogy), has about learning to relate the results with those obtained by Rosário et al. (2006) in Portugal. This research aims to weigh the scopes and limits of applying the categorial system developed by the authors to conceptions of learning obtained from different contexts. Both research works share a phenomenological approach, but they differ in population and instrument. Our research was conducted on 264 students -attending the initial or the final courses of their careers in Argentina (National University of Cuyo), Brazil (Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and Paulista State University) and Mexico (University of Colima)-, using an open item of the Inventory of Learning Conceptions and Experiences at University (INCEAPU). The work of Rosário et al. (2006) was applied to 16 students of the University of Évora through individual interviews. Findings show shared conceptions, some similar but not identical categories, and other categories that are different from the sample under analysis. Therefore, it can be concluded that, although some similarities and overlaps can be observed, there are also distinctive aspects, according to the educational context. On the other hand, findings suggest that, even though conceptions start on the students’ community and condition their response to the educational tasks, such conceptions become bidirectional, since the teaching methods influence students’ perception of learning. It is relevant to research the learning conceptions in students’ words because, if the university makes a commitment involving respect for diversity, the first issue in question is to know what is “the diverse” in terms of the different ways in which students understand the concept of learning.

Author Biographies

Ida Lucía Morchio, Universidad Nacional de Cuyo

PhD in Education (UNCuyo) and Specialist in University Pedagogy. Bachelor Degree and University Professor in Educational Psychology (UCA). Head Professor at the Educational Psychology chair and Director of Student Counseling and Support Service (UNCuyo). Researcher on Higher Education Learning. Author/co-author of books and papers related to educational psychology studies.

Solange Astudillo, Universidad Nacional de Cuyo

Professor in Educational Sciences (UNCuyo), member of the Psychology of Education chair (FFyL, UNCuyo), and teacher of General Didactics at initial and primary levels (Instituto de Educación Superior). She is a member of the Technical Commission at the Educational Sciences Institute. She participates in research works on Higher Education Learning (from 2014 to the present).

Hilda Difabio, Universidad Nacional de Cuyo

PhD in Educational Sciences by the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo (Mendoza, Argentina). Researcher at the National Council of Scientific and Technical Research, based at the Cuyo Research Center (CIC), Mendoza. Director of the above mentioned council since 2011. Author/co-author of books, book chapters and papers in Argentine and foreign journals.


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How to Cite

Learning Conceptions From a Phenomenographic Approach. Convergences and Differences Between Portuguese and Latin American University Students (I. L. Morchio, S. Astudillo, & H. Difabio , Trans.). (2020). Revista Electrónica Educare, 24(2), 1-22. https://doi.org/10.15359/ree.24-2.10



Journal Articles (Peer Reviewed Section)

How to Cite

Learning Conceptions From a Phenomenographic Approach. Convergences and Differences Between Portuguese and Latin American University Students (I. L. Morchio, S. Astudillo, & H. Difabio , Trans.). (2020). Revista Electrónica Educare, 24(2), 1-22. https://doi.org/10.15359/ree.24-2.10

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