The dominant approach to the study of learning throughout most of the twentieth century was to view learning as cognitive only, as if it were a process contained in the mind of the learner, decontextualised from the lived-in world. There is now, however, a growing interest in the study of learning as situated in a specific time, place and social activity – as ‘situated learning’ – and to view the locus of learning not as in the brain of the single individual (person-solo) but as ‘distributed’ among person, language, artefacts, activities and environment (person-plus) (see Lave and Wenger, 1999; Salomon, 1993; Brown, Collins and Duguid, 1989).

What have been emerging in the last twenty years are ideas about learning which conceptualise the relationships between person, activity, situation and artefacts in a process of learning without necessarily encompassing each concept in a theoretical entity. What is being sough, rather, is a more inclusive, intensive development of the socially situated character of learning activity in theoretically consistent terms (Chaklin and Lave, 2003).

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