Boardmembers’ Biographies

Chair, Ms. Kirsi Pyhältö, University of Oulu

Kirsi Pyhältö, PhD. is professor of educational sciences, at the University of Oulu. She also works as a research director in the Center for Research and Development of Higher Education, at the University of Helsinki. Her research interest include, teachers’ professional agency, learning and well-being in school and in teacher education. In the area of higher education her interest focuses on researcher education and early career researchers.

Vice-Chair, Ms. Auli Toom, University of Helsinki

Auli Toom, PhD, Professor of Higher Education, works as a Director of the Centre for University Teaching and Learning (HYPE) at University of Helsinki, Finland. She is a Visiting Professor at University of Tartu, Estonia. Dr. Toom is also the director of the doctoral programme PsyCo (Psychology, Learning and Communication). Her research interests include teacher knowing, agency and teacher education as well as the scholarship of teaching and learning. She investigates student learning of knowledge work and global competencies, and pedagogies and digital technologies supporting learning in the contexts of basic, upper secondary and higher education.

Secretary, Ms. Sini Kontkanen, University of Eastern Finland

Sini Kontkanen, Master of Education, works as a Researcher at the School of Applied Educational Science and Teacher Training at the University of Eastern Finland. Her research interest include knowledge and perceptions of ICT use in education (TPACK), especially in teacher education. She has acted as FERA secretary since 2011.

Treasurer, Ms Raakel Plamper, University of Turku

Raakel Plamper, MA (Education), works as a doctoral candidate at the Department of Education at the University of Turku. Her research interests cover marketization of higher education, education policy, academic work and history of universities. As a treasurer of FERA she has begun in 2018.

Communication Officer, Mr. Antti Ronkainen, University of Eastern Finland

Master of Education, Antti Ronkainen is currently working as a Project Researcher at the School of Applied Educational Science and Teacher Training at the University of Eastern Finland, Joensuu.


Mr. Janne Elo, Åbo Akademi

Dr Janne Elo works as a university lecturer in general education and adult education at the Faculty of education and welfare studies at Åbo Akademi University. Elo is also a researcher in The Hella-project, developing higher education pedagogy, as well as the project manager of a research project in enterprise education and board member of the Scientific Association for Entrepreneurship Education. Elo´s background is in sloyd education and teacher education. His areas of research are mainly enterprise education, entrepreneurship education, teacher autonomy, pedagogic leadership and higher education leadership.

Ms. Satu Perälä-Littunen, University of Jyväskylä

Satu Perälä-Littunen, PhD, Title of Docent (Adjunct professor) works as a research coordinator at the Faculty of Education, University of Jyväskylä. Her research interest include parental thinking, ethnotheories,  cultural belief systems and ideas of  children’s upbringing and care. Perälä-Littunen represents FERA in the council of the European Educational Research Association.

Ms. Heli Ruokamo, University of Lapland

Heli Ruokamo, Ph.D. (Education) is a professor of education (specially media education), research vice dean, and director of the Centre for Media Pedagogy at the Faculty of Education, University of Lapland, Finland.  She has been working for 3 years as a Visiting Scholar at Stanford University. Ruokamo has been member of the board of the multidisciplinary CICERO Learning Network since it was established. She is also a member of the board of the Finnish Multidisciplinary Doctoral Training Network (FinEd). Ruokamo’s research interests are focused on pedagogical models for online learning, educational use of ICT’s, mobile and meaningful learning, and playful and simulation-based learning environments.

Ms. Kaisu Rättyä, University of Tampere

Kaisu Rättyä, Docent in literary education, works in teacher education at University of Education. Her research interests lie in literary education and educational linguistics. Her recent project deals with the teaching methods of grammar in L1. Currently her research intrests include assessment, subject didactics and pedagogical content knowledge in all levels of education. She is chair of Finnish Research Association for Subject Didactics.