Publications and presentations


bookcover small  Anne Karin Larsen, Vishanthie Sewpaul & Grete Oline Hole  (eds) (2014) Participation in Community Work. International Perspectives. London, New York: Routledge.

This book is a result of international cooperation starting from SW-VirCamp and with contribution from authors from five continents. For more information see: Participation in Community Work


Larsen, A K (2010) Social Work-Virtual Campus (SW-VirCamp): Final report, public part. A SW-VirCamp publication. Høgskolen I Bergen. Available at and


Larsen, A K & Hole, G.O. (2020) 15 Years experiences from digital teaching and leraning within international social work online courses. Competences achieved and challenges solved, chapter 11, in Linda Daniela (ed.) Pedagogies of Digital Learning in Higher Education. Taylor & Francis. (e-book available).

Powerpoint presentation available: 15 years experiences with digital teaching and learning_book chapter pres 19.11.2020

Full paper available by request:


This chapter reflects experiences and lessons learned with digital teaching and learning in international online social work courses, from 2004–2019. It gives answers to how technology enhanced learning can change education, and how partners in the Consortium of European Higher Educational Institutions, VIRCLASS (The Virtual Classroom) and SW-VirCamp (Social Work Virtual Campus), developed and offered online courses to Bachelor students in social work. By using digital learning material, like screen lectures, triggers, and virtual cases, the courses emphasised on participatory learning and integrating theories into practice. An e-pedagogy course for teachers in higher education based on the principles of situated learning, and Gilly Salmons steps for e-moderating, has given the teachers the necessary skills and competences. The attitude towards and understanding of online teaching and learning has changed during these years. Knowledge achieved from evaluations and research following the process of development, teaching and learning over years are presented. Starting with the initiating process, dilemmas met and solved, and strategies for making virtual learning material that triggered learning are presented and discussed. Finally, the effects of changing learning management systems are outlined.

Larsen, A.K. & Hole, G.O. (2015) ‘Study abroad from home, VIRCLASS and SW-VirCamp Promoting International (Ex)change in Social Work in Europe’ in E.Kruse (ed.) Internationaler Austausch in der Sozialen Arbeit, SpringerVS.

Abstract: This article focuses on the development of international e-learning courses in social work and how this has been planned and carried out through The Virtual Classroom for Social Work in Europe (VIRCLASS) and the EU-funded project Social Work – Virtual Campus (SW-VirCamp). International e-learning courses offer students who cannot go abroad for different reasons the opportunity to ‘study abroad from home’. They also present the possibility to prepare for international studies or placements to those students who consider studying in another country later

Hole, G.O. & Larsen, A.K. (2014) ‘Quality Challenges in inter-institutional Collaboration about online international education’ Chapter 5 in Y. Nordkvelle, T. Fossland & G. Netteland (eds) Quality in flexible higher education – Nordic perspectives, Trondheim/Oslo: Akademia. Available in English at:

Larsen, A.K., Sewpaul, V. & Hole, G.O. (2014) ‘Introduction’, in A.K. Larsen, V. Sewpaul & G.O. Hole (eds) Participation in community work, international perspectives, London: Routledge, pp. 1-15.

Larsen, A.K & Hole, G.O. (2014) ‘Participatory learning of community work in an e-learning course’, in A.K. Larsen, V. Sewpaul,  and G.O. Hole (eds) Participation in community work, international perspectives, London: Routledge, pp. 88-103.

Hole, G.O., Harris, J. & Larsen, A.K. (2014) ‘The co-construction of knowledge: Reflection on experiences of developing an online international community work course’, in A.K. Larsen, V. Sewpaul,  and G.O. Hole (eds) Participation in community work, international perspectives, London: Routledge, pp. 41-53.

Sewpaul, V. &  Larsen, A.K. (2014) ‘Community development: towards an integrated emancipatory framework’, in A.K. Larsen, V. Sewpaul,  and G.O. Hole (eds) Participation in community work, international perspectives, London: Routledge, pp. 230-246.

Hole, G.O. & Larsen, A.K (2013) ‘Kvalitetsutfordringer i samarbeid mellom institusjoner om nettstudier’ [Quality challenges in inter-institutional collaboration about online international education] in Y. Nordkvelle, T. Fossland & G. Netteland (eds) Kvalitet i fleksibel høyere utdanning – nordiske perspektiver [Quality in flexible higher education – Nordic perspectives], Oslo og Trondheim: Akademika forlag.

Larsen, A K, Visser-Rotgans, R & Hole, G O (2011) Teaching and learning community work online: can e-learning promote competences for future practice? Journal of Technology in Human Services 29(1), 13-32. Routledge. Accessable:

Abstract: This article presents a case study of an online course in Community Work and the learning outcomes for an international group of students participating in the course. Examples from the process of, and results from the development of virtual-learning material are presented. Finally, the students’ learning experience and competences achieved by the use of innovative learning material and ICT communication tools are presented.

Larsen, A K, Hole, G O, Henriksboe, K & Olsson, K-G (2011) E-Læring med globalt focus (eng.: E-learning with a global focus): Fontene 11(4), s. 54-60. Oslo: Fellesorganisasjonen.

Hole, GO, Larsen, AK & Hoem, J (2010) Promoting the Good E- teacher: Didactical choices when developing e-pedagogical competences. In Issue 3, vol.6.  (electronic  journal)

Abstract: The article gives an overview of how the development of a blended e-pedagogy course for Higher Education teachers have used the experiences from many years of international online courses for European BA students. Influenced by the situated-learning perspective, this course employs student-centred teaching and learning methods. Moreover, inspired by the Community of Inquiry, this programme emphasizes the importance of Cognitive, Teaching and Social presence in the Virtual Learning Environment. The students plan their own courses in accordance with the stages of becoming an e-learner. One uses the ecological “Model of Relations between Didactical Categories” as a framework, and the e-pedagogy course is customized to be “hands-on” learning experiences, which promotes the desired e-teacher competences. During the course the students are engaged in discussions and co-operation by using different ICT-collaborations tools. At this time, the course has been held twice, and is available for everyone as an online learning resource under the Creative Commons license ( Evaluations by students have demonstrated that this hands-on training course can help students attain the necessary competences needed to be skilled e-teachers.

Larsen, AK (2010) Voces asignadas: practica antiopresiva, teoria critica y practica del trabajo social (Anti-oppressive practice, Critical reflection in social work). In Fernando De Lucas y Murillo De La Cueva & Andres Arias Astray (directores): Diccionario internacional de Trabajo Social y Servicios Sociales.  Buenos Aires, Argentina: Mino y Davila.

Larsen, AK (2009)  Open Distance Learning as Instrument for Teaching and   Learning Social Work in a Changing Europe.  I Kantowicz, E.: Role of Research in Education for Social Work in Europe.  EUSW report. Olsztyn: Wydawnictwo UWM. Polen

Larsen, AK, Sanders, R, Astray, A A & Hole, GO. (2008) E-teacher Challenges and Competences in International Comparative Social Work Courses. Social Work Education, Vol 27, Issue 6, pp 623-633


This paper focuses on how technology used by the Virtual Classroom for Social Work in Europe (VIRCLASS) enables the development of multimedia learning material, creates a supportive learning environment for students and teachers, and promotes communication across national borders. One significant outcome of this programme has been that the process of developing a common curriculum plan and the learning material has triggered the development of digital competence on the part of the teachers. The paper discusses the impact on the teachers’ role of using a Virtual Book with screen lectures, audio-visual triggers and a video-case.

Two cohorts completed the programme between 2005 and 2007. The discussion of the development of a new teacher role, where teachers can be seen as a Community of Learners, is undertaken from a socio-cultural perspective where data from the first cohort are important as a backdrop for the discussion.

Outlined from the teachers’ experiences, four important e-teacher competences emerge—facilitator competences, ICT competences, supervision/coaching competences, and collaboration competences. From this, knowledge, skills and attitudes are explored.


Keywords: International Social Work Education; ICT Competences; Teacher Role; Teacher Competences; Learning Communities; Teacher Collaboration; Digital Learning Material; Facilitating Collaborative Learning; Teaching Skills; Teaching Attitudes


Larsen, AK, Hole, GO & Fahlvik, M. (2007) Developing a Virtual Book – Material for Virtual Learning environments. vol 3, issue 3.The future of the Learning Management System

This is an interactive article with a short video introduction and with short flash demonstrations in the paper, giving the reader some glimpse into the Virtual Book.

Abstract This article describes the process of, and considerations taken when Virtual Learning Materials were developed for an international study in Comparative Social Work arranged by the VIRCLASS project. The steps taken and the elements included in the Virtual Book – A Guide to Social Work in Europe are presented in details to inform others who are planning to make virtual learning materials. Students from 11 countries in Europe participated, and their reception of this material and learning outcomes from using it are analysed and presented. Furthermore; the article discuss how the learning material contributes to students’ learning, how a common understanding of practice enhances knowledge-building and in what way audio-visual learning material can contribute to good learning in e-learning courses. The results are discussed in relation to theories about composite texts and community of inquiry, and outlines some challenges for e-teachers’ competences.

Larsen, AK & Hole, GO. (2007b) Arranging Digital studies in an International Learning Community. The VIRCLASS project. Gunnar Myklebost og Olav Skare (edr) Om re-mediering av undervisning – og læring gjennom samarbeid. (About re-mediation of teaching and learning through collaboration) Norgesuniversitetet/Norway Opening Universities  Report 2/2007 chapter 10

Abstract: This article will focus on how to arrange a virtual classroom that will enhance collaboration and learning among the participants from all over Europe. It is based on a single case study The VIRCLASS project – The Virtual Classroom for Social Work in Europe, which is a project that has developed e-learning courses for social work students with an international group of teachers. The research data are descriptive and based on both quantitative and qualitative data collected over a two years period and within a pragmatic approach. The article highlights factors that influence the learning environment and the “special” challenges when arranging a collaborative learning environment within an international community of e-learning. On the background of a social-cultural learning perspective and theories about good learning, the experience and practice in the VIRCLASS project is analysed and discussed.  

Larsen, AK. (2007) ODL Open Distance Learning as instrument for teaching and learning and learning social work in a changing Europe. Paper presented at the NVU conference in Bergen 13 – 14 March 2007. In Ida Knutsen et al (eds) Digitale Utfordringer – hvordan fremme læring gjennom fellesskap på nett? (Digital Challenges – how to enhance learning through collaboration on Internet? Report no 6/2007 Høgskolen I Bergen. (

Larsen, AK; Hole, GO (2007a): The role of the Virtual Classroom in opening up the European Curriculum. In Frost, Freitas & Campanini (2007): Social Work Education in Europe. EUSW book III, chapter 4, pp 73-88. Carocci Editore, Rome, August 2007

Abstract: This chapter focuses upon the reflections of students regarding their participation in the e-learning courses organized through the VIRCLASS project. By examining further the students’ own reflections, our desire is to make improvements to any future courses we offer. How can e-learning courses in social work contributes to the development of professional competences? The concepts of learning which underlie the e-learning courses in VIRCLASS are presented, and then a brief overview of the research process follows. The presentation of data will relate directly to the central themes which emerged through the examination of students’ reflections upon e-learning. The chapter ends with us deliberating on both the students’ reflections on learning and the actual significance of reflecting upon learning in social work.

Hole, GO, Larsen, AK (2007): VIRCLASS: the Virtual Classroom for Social Work in Europe – a toolkit for innovation? EURODL (European Journal of Open Distance and E-learning) 1/2007

Abstract: Through a student-centred virtual learning environment students and teachers in Europe cooperate, exchange information of social work in their own country, and increase their digital literacy. In VIRCLASS students from 15 countries collaborated in their learning process by sharing knowledge with peer-students. Teachers from eight European countries were involved in the course. With a common curriculum, a study-program rewarded with 15 ECTS credits and using A-F marks many of the elements from the Bologna-process are met.

Presentations at international/ national conferences (with abstract/papers)

Larsen, A.K. (2016) Place prosjektet (1). International Week, Bergen University College,26.10.2016.

Larsen, A.K (2015) Teaching community development within an international context” Presentation at The EASSW Conference: Social Work Education in Europe: Towards 2025, Milan, Italy, 29.06 – 02.07.2015

Hole, G.O. & Larsen, A.K (2013) « Kvalitetsutfordringer i samarbeid mellom institusjoner om utvikling av nettstudier» [Quality challenges in inter-institutional collaboration about online international education], 2013-22-04 – 2013-23-04, [Invited presentation], Norgesuniversitetet Kvalitet i fleksibel høgre utdanning,  Didaktikk og teknologi konferanse, Lillehammer. [Norway Opening University, Quality in flexible higher education. Didactics and technology conference]

Larsen, A.K. & Hole. G.O. (2013) Participatory Learning of Community Work in an E-Learning Course. 25th Nordic Conference of Social Work Schools, ’Social Work Teaching at the intersection between Research and Practice’, Tampere, Finland, August 28-30, 2013. Click on the link and see the presentation: NASSW 2013 PARTICIPATORY LEARNING OF COMMUNITY WORK IN AN E-LEARNING

Veenkamp, R., Larsen, AK. & Astray, A.A. (2012): The Social Work Virtual Campus’ impact on internationalization of the curriculum. Joint World Conference on Social Work and Social Development: Action and impact. 2012. Stockholm, Sweden 8-12 July 2012.

Hole, GO & Larsen, AK (2012 Participatory Action Research/Action Learning Contributint to Participants Understanding of the Concept of Community Work. The Eight International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry, Urbana-Champagne, Illinois, USA 16 – 19 May 2012. ICQI-18May-Hole-and-Larsen

Henriksbø, K. & Larsen, AK (2011) Students’ understanding of Community Work in an International Perspective. Results from the SW-VirCamp e-learning module in Community Work. Island abstrakt to the Joint Nordic Conference in Social Work, Reykjavik, Island 11-13 August 2011.

Larsen, AK., Visser-Rotgans, R. & Hole, GO (2011) Competence Building for Social Change. Abstract ENSACT conference 10-13 April 2011, Brussels. ENSACT_abstract 409.

Hole, GO., Larsen, AK. & Hoem, J.: Bruk av Web 2.0.i en virtuell campus. Samarbeid på tvers av landegrenser. Presentasjon på Nettverksuniversitets 11 konferanse: Innovativ e-læring. Steinkjer 15-16 mars 2011. Accepted abstract

Larsen, AK. & Hole, GO. (2010) Social Work-Virtual Campus. Kvalitet og Bærekraft. Invitert presentasjon på Norgesuniversitetets høstseminar 16. september 2010, Tromsø 16. september 2010, Tromsø.

Larsen, AK (2010) Arranging Digital studies in an International Learning Community. The VIRCLASS and the SW-VirCamp projects. How e-learning courses in social work can contribute to the development of professional competences? Presentation at the SW-VirCamp konferanse 17 juni 2010, Lusofona Universitet, Lisboa Portugal.

Larsen, AK; Marques, E.; Astray, A. A. & Hole, GO. (2010): Developing a virtual campus for international social work.  Poster presentation EDEN konferansen i Valencia, Spania 10-12 Juni 2010.

Astray, A. A., Larsen, AK., Veenkamp, R., Sanders, R., (2010):  We have the vision & the know-how. What can be the problem? A provisional catalogue of challenges for e-learning in European bachelor courses derived from the experience of the SW-VirCamp project.  Paper presentation at EDEN conference i Valencia, Spania 10-12 Juni 2010.

Larsen, AK. og Visser-Rotgans, R. (2010): Teaching and Learning Community Work online: Development of an International Virtual Campus. Paper presentation The Joint World Conference on Social Work and Social Development.  IASSW Juni 2010, Hong Kong, China.

Larsen, AK. (2010): Social Work – Virtual Campus. Utvikling av en nettbasert modul i Community Work. Presentasjon på Nordisk nettverkskonferanse i samfunnsarbeid, 18-20 mars 2010, Aarhus, Danmark.

Hole, GO., Larsen, AK, Hoem, J. og Bonete, X. (2010) Didaktiske val for å fremje den gode e-læraren. Presentasjon på Nettverksuniversitets konferanse, 16 mars 2010, Stord. (Forskdoc: r10013079)

Hole, GO, Larsen, AK, Hoem, J & Bonete, X (2009)  E-teacher training: didactical principles for developing e-teacher competences. Presentation at ALT-C 2009: “In dreams begins responsibility”- choice, evidence and change. 16th International conference, Manchester , UK 08-10 Sept 2009

Larsen AK., Hole GO., Henriksbø,K. & Olsson, KG (2009) Veien mot en internasjonal spesialisering i komparativt sosialt arbeid. En presentasjon av SW-VirCamp prosjektet  på Nordisk Sosialhøgskolekomités (NSHK) 23. Konferanse, Bodø. Available: 6-8 August 2009

Astray, AA, Larsen, AK, Olsson, KG &Visser, R (2009)  Individualized communities, social cohesion and challenges for Social Work. 1st ENSACT Joint European Conference, Dubrovnik, Kroatia. 26-29 april 2009

Marques, Eduardo, Astray, AA, Larsen, AK, Hole, GO (2008)” E-learning Students: reasons for dropout: The VIRCLASS Case (The Virtual Classroom for Social Work in Europe). Presentation at the EDEN Annual Conference in Lisbon, Portugal 11-14 June 2008. New Learning Cultures: how do we learn? Where do we learn? Read the paper. See the Powerpoint

Arias Astray, A. (2008) “VIRCLASS, Trabajo Social en Europa: nuevas tecnologías para el Trabajo Social”. Seminario Interuniversitario: Intervención Social en Inmigración, Violencia y Género. Especial referencia a las TIC’S. Salamanca University. 7-8 March. Salamanca. Spain English translation: “VIRCLASS, Social Work in Europe: new technologies for Social Work”. Inter-university seminar: social intervention in immigration, violence and gender. Special reference to ICT.

Olsson, Klas-Göran (2008) Det virtuella klassrummet för “Social Work in Europe”. Ett verktyg för utveckling av socialt arbete i Europa. Presentasjon og Poster på Vetenskapens Dag, Hälsohögskolan i Jönköping. 5.March 2008

Veenkamp, R (2007) VIRCLASS presentation at HBO-raad – national teachers conference, Haarlem.

Veenkamp, R(2007) VIRCLASS presentation at the Haagse Hogeschool, Teachers conference, 8 November 2007, Haarlem

Larsen, AK (2007) Learning and Teaching Practice in EUSW. VIRCLASS e-learning courses. EUSW 3rd annual meeting, Seville Spain October 2007

Larsen, AK/ Olsson, K-G (2007) VIRCLASS goes World Wide. Presentation at NOMA conference, Bodø, Norway. August 2007

Sanders, R./Larsen, AK (2007) VIRCLASS – Social Work Education – sans Frontieres. Presentation at 9th UK Joint Social Work Education Conference, 1st UK Social Work Research Conference, July 2007, Swansea, UK.

Larsen, AK/ Hole, GO/Fahlvik, M (2007) Will Mrs K and her Family trigger the learning in European Social Work? Presentation at DIVERSE07, Lillehammer, June 2007

Olsson, K-G (2007) VIRCLASS Det Virtuella Klassrummet för ”Social Work in Europe”: ett verktyg för utveckling av socialt arbete i Europa Presentation at Seminarion, Högskolan i Jönköbing, May 2007

Marques, E (2007) Social Work Contributions to Promote Diversity and Equality – The VIRCLASS example. Presentation at the 7th Congresso da Cercilei – Liberdade condicionada pela diferenca. Leira, Portugal, April 2007

Larsen, AK (2007) Presentation of the use of it’s learning in an international classroom and development and use of a digital learning material in e-learning courses. Invited presenter at a national e-learning Conference, NVU, Bergen March 2007

Olsson, K-G/Larsen, AK/Veenkamp, R (2007) VIRCLASS . The Virtual Classroom for Social Work in Europe – a toolkit for developing social work in Europe. Presentation at European Association of Social Work Conference, Parma Italy, March 2007

Larsen, AK (2006) Kunnskapsutvikling i sosialt arbeid ved bruk av IKT i internasjonale studier. Presentasjon på Jubileumskonferanse i Bergen FORSA-Norge 10 år: Sosialt arbeid ved et veiskille. 30 nov – 1 des. 2006  In English: Development of the knowledgebase in Social Work by the use of ICT in international studies. Presentation at the Jubileumconference in Bergen, FORSA (Research in Social Work)- Norway 10 year.

Hole, GO/Larsen, AK (2006) Productive Learning in Social Work Education A case-study of a Learning Community in European Social Work, mediated through the Learning Management Systems its: learning. EDEN Research workshop Barcelona, Spain, October 2006

Kantowicz, E (2006) New Educational Programmes of European Social Work – VIRCLASS example. Presentation at the PASSW, Polish Association of Schools of Social Work Conference, Kielce, Poland 11-12 Oct 2006

Hole,GO/Larsen,AK (2006) VIRCLASS – A toolkit for innovation in Social Work in Europe? EDEN conference, Vienna, Austria June 2006

Olsson, K-G/ Larsen, AK (2006) Europas virtuella klassrum, ger nya möjligheter till internationella studier i Socialt Arbete (The Virtual Classroom for Social Work in Europe. New possibilities for international studies in social work) Presentation at Netlearning international e-learning conference, Ronneby, Sweden, May 2006

Larsen,AK/Olsson,K-G (2006) The Virtual Classroom for Social Work in Europe. Presentation at 6 th Nordic Conference of FORSA. Socialt arbete i informationseran – polariseringar och nya paradigm i kunskapsproduktionen  Helsinki, Finland 9-11 February 2006.

Larsen,AK (2006) VIRCLASS – The Virtual Classroom for Social Work in Europe. Presentation at EUSW 2nd Annual Meeting. The role of Research in Social Work Education in Europe Olsztyn in Poland Ocober 2006

Larsen, AK (2005) ODL (open distance learning) as instrument for teaching and learning social work in a changing Europe. Presentation of the Virtual Classroom for Social Work in Europe (the VIRCLASS project). 21st Nordic Conference for Schools of Social Work Copenhagen, Denmark. August 2005