Educational issues and contexts in the digital society

This research area investigates educational issues settled in different environments, learning situations and ages framed in the digital society. All educational practices happen in sociocultural contexts, so this field of knowledge searches to contribute with substantial work to understand and to improve the education universe and, hence, the current digital society. From this perspective, in this research line, technology is not the research focus but part of the sociocultural context which shapes relationships, tools and educational settings.

The goal of this research line is to investigate aspects involving education in a broad way which could happen in any place with an open perspective. This approach opens the door to research about topics like: informal teaching in global scenarios, technical elements like quality criteria adapted to any setting where the enhancement of teaching and learning could be designed, supported or demonstrated and also adopt a socio-educational approach focused in elements which comprise or influence the nature and the progress of the education practice from a more social point of view. 

Thesis Proposals


Research Group

Social and educational action in school environments

Educational spaces in schools have increased in number and have diversified, with new actors becoming involved. This is a complex reality that offers social education workers many possibilities for action and reflection. Based on the premise that social education promotes the right to education and culture, as well as openness to surroundings and social and collaborative relationships, social education workers have a place at the heart of schools in a framework of collaboration with the rest of the educations system.

Research topics

  • The social function of schools
  • Educational and pedagogical models
  • Professional tasks and responsibilities


Dr Eva Bretones 


Analysis of social education practices in complex environments

This thesis proposal is an opportunity to research the educational effects of institutional practices in the field of child protection as well as analysis and comparisons of protection systems. There is also an interest in studying social pedagogy's contributions to the analysis of professional practices and case analysis methodology in teams of social education workers. Lastly, there is the intention to create ties with studies or research projects relating to social education, adolescence and cities.

Research topics

  • Supervision of teams
  • Social pedagogy
  • Social education
  • Professional practices
  • Analysis of practices
  • Community participation

Dr Segundo Moyano


Dr Jordi Solé


Laboratory of Social Education

Contemporary pedagogical thinking and critical education

This line of research is an opportunity for students to work on doctoral theses linked to contemporary pedagogical thinking, following perspectives from the theory and history of education. Considering standpoints in critical pedagogy, the intention is to study the elements that allow for certain openings in the ways educational practices are conceived and performed. Based on a hermeneutic epistemology and qualitative methodologies, the idea is to study education using parameters such as diversity, differences, bodies, and peace culture. 

Research topics

  • Queer theory and education in pedagogical devices
  • Pedagogy and functional diversity: critical studies on inclusion
  • Sensitive pedagogy and body studies: bodies, culture and education
  • Pedagogies and peace culture
  • Philosophy of education
  • Theory of education
  • Contemporary pedagogical thinking
Dr Jordi Planella 

Dr Andrea Francisco 

Dr Asun Pié
Educational quality assessment
This research line explores the quality of education systems from a conceptual, ideological and political viewpoint. It also encompasses research on assessment processes and models, both from a macro (system) perspective and a micro (educational process) perspective. 
Studies related to the following thesis lines are particularly relevant: 
1. Educational transformation processes triggered by the growing integration of digital technologies, and the social and economic impact of these processes on the quality of education at the student level.  
2. Strategies for widening and enhancing stakeholders' involvement in defining quality and the assessment processes in place to measure it. 
3. Proposals for new assessment models, systems or tools (or updates to existing ones) that take into account improvement, innovation and ongoing change processes in educational contexts, especially technology-mediated ones. 
Dr Nati Cabrera