The Future of Education

Edition 14

Speaker Profile

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Pål Anders Opdal

Institution: UiT – The Arctic University of Norway

Address: Universitetsvegen 39

Postal Code: N-9037

Country: Norway

Pål Anders Opdal is an associate professor in general pedagogy at UiT – The Arctic University of Norway and a visiting professor in the pedagogy of higher education at NMH – The Norwegian Academy of Music.

Opdal graduated in philosophy from the University of Edinburg/The University of Tromsø in 1998/2001. Since then he has been a visiting scholar in Berlin as well as having completed a Ph.D. in educational studies/the philosophy of education at UiT – The Arctic University of Norway.

Opdal works on foundational educational concepts. To give some examples of questions that interest him – how are we to understand and/or conceptualize teaching; how are we to understand and/or conceptualize learning; what are fruitful ways of understanding competence; and what is the nature of educational science (if indeed it has one)? His main area of expertise is in the philosophy of education, but he has also worked in didactics and curriculum theory, both in terms of theory and empirical studies. Opdal is much used as reviewer for different educational outlets, and he is often engaged as an external resource in matters dealing with educational quality. He teaches at all levels of higher education (introductory to colleague-level) and he supervises several MA-students and one Ph.D.-student.

Some of Opdal’s publications are worthy of note: 1) “Inside the Black Box: On the Concepts Teaching and Learning and the Connections between them” (on-line here: and 2) “To Do or To Listen? Student-active Learning vs. The Lecture” (on-line here:

Opdal lives in Tromsø, Norway and he has two children. When not occupied with questions pertaining to (the philosophy of) education, he is an avid hiker, hunter, and skier.

Areas of Expertise: Philosophy of education, learning theory, student active forms of learning, didactics, European qualification frameworks, curriculum theory

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