Classrooms provide extremely varied settings in which learning may take place, including teacher-led conversations, small group unguided discussions, individual problem solving or computer supported collaborative learning (CSCL).
This book is not characterized by one perspective shared by all contributors. Unity comes from the fact that researchers belong to a common adventure - changing school practices and norms. This adventure is moved by societal ideals of reason and equity. Contexts for learning are not immutable givens. Rather, the classroom context is the result of a programmatic design: researchers are interested in implementing certain practices or instilling certain norms. Practices instigated include small group collaborative problem solving, non-intrusive guidance (also called moderation) in group discussion, or collective argumentation, to cite a few. By doing so, all authors share a critical perspective that aims at supporting change at all levels (institutional, curricular, communicative, material).