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Kaleidoscope, a FP6 network of excellence in the technology enhanced learning (TEL) research area, was created in 2004 following a four years contract with the European commission. The aim of the network was to foster integration of different research disciplines relevant to TEL, bridging educational, cognitive and social sciences, and emerging technologies. This ambition was both scientific and strategic:
- It was scientific by its aim “to develop a rich, culturally-diverse and coherent theoretical and practical research foundation for research and innovation in the field”, exploring “the different conceptual frameworks of relevant disciplines in order to delineate the commonalities and differences that frame the research objectives in the field”
- it was strategic by its aim “to develop new tools and methodologies that operationalise an interdisciplinary approach to research on TEL at a European-wide level” with the expectation of a significant impact at the international level.
To bring this ambition to reality, in a very fragmented European TEL research area, it chosen to involve a large number of contributors of which only a small number were already collaborating, and a large range of different research themes. A set of instruments was planned to support the construction of the network and the integration process at both the content and the infrastructure level.