Apr 092014

After a day away at the Spatial Memories Design Workshop, I am back at Networked Learning 2014.

The spaces of networked learning
Sian Bayne is introducing the session by saying that spatial dimension have been raised at a number of sessions throughout the conference.

Richard Edwards

When we use the term “networked learning” are we being literal or metaphorically. What is the conceptual significance of the network in networked learning? For me network is inherently relational and therefore spatial. And that informs the we need to think about both networks and learning. Space is often treated like a black box, observed rather than analysed. The classroom, the blackboard… I think it is no coincidence that open learning is so central to networked learning but how do we frame this?

There is the concept of the framed economy of space, David Harvey et al. Focused on space divided by economic conditions, globalisation, urbanisation, inequalities. Then there’s Doreen massey’s feminist concept of space and of time, the gendered nature of such spaces and their orderings. There is the post structuralist idea of space, for instance Sian has used the open striated spaces. And then there is john murray and co’s socialist take on spaces. The power, the practice of associating and disassociating.

There are two particular things that interest me. One in relation to technology, the other our conception of learning. One is computer mediated. Codespace. The “hidden curriculum” of networked learning and digital education. When we think about spatially, we can decentralise the subject. That’s yet to really be teased out but very interesting.


Q: what about pedagogues of networked learning?
A: one of things we. Have to think about in our research is to consider when we are using things as analytical concepts versus when we are using the. As pedagogues in practice. I’m interested in network spatial analytically. But one might want to think about them pedagogically, how we might do that in new and interested ways…

A: one of the things that’s such a Central concept is the nature of learning. Various ways to understand that. For me drawing on spatial theory, and indeed actor network theory, is thinking beyond ourselves and our cognitive engagement with learning, but of learning in relation to other people, other systems… But does that compromise the fundamental understanding of learning. I guess I’m trying to push at how far we can go with this. Assessment for instance… What does decentreing the subject mean for assessment when all of our existing practices are about centering the subject?

Q: if we decentre the subject aren’t we talking about resource management – assessing the environment and the subject…
A: yes in terms of ecology and sustainability in education
Q: so what competencies do we need to do that sort of thing?
A: competencies of relating to others and their environments.
Q: Why can’t an economist do this?
A: they can. But so can others. One of the issues of education is that we think too much about people detached from their context. Part of my work here is about understanding the nature of being human by understanding context, not to deny what it is to be human by denying that context.

MOOCs and spatial theory – jeremy Knox

I’m going to try and apply spatial theory to the MOOC. In particular talking about three different types of spaces: the global institution – a particular sort of space by coursera, Edex, udacity; the homely – the domestication of the global; the overwhelming – another way to think spatially about this problem, the global and the local coming together.

Sofi you look at how big organisations promote themselves, the image of the globe is really rather prominent. Edex shows the globe spinning and the nodes of a network forming in that. Significant because MOOC organisations appropriate the globe to symbolically talk about their reach, but also appropriating the idea of the network for what they want to do, to reach far corners of the world with education.

The other thing they do is have missions and visions. Udacity talk about a mission to bring accessible, adorable, engaging and highly effective higher education to the world. The key word is “bring”. And their publicity strongly suggests who they may be targeting. The MOOC companies both promote and explicitly are trying to reach developing world countries. At the coursera conference recently one of the dashboard metrics is percentage of student so rom the developing world.

I also wanted to talk about the colloquial sign up page features, so coursera talks about “Courserians”. So the way the organisations measure reach is sign ups to the platform, that’s how they measure how far they are getting across the globe. And coursera released a visualisation of how they think of themselves across the world. The image is of a globe and is generated by data. Data is something I haven’t heard much this week but it is significant and is something MOOCs are bringing into the education world. The shading of the coursera map effectively makes the world come into being by the uptake of the platform. And there is a significant difference between who delivers the education, and who it is delivered to.

So there is a dominant form of education here is of transmission. And it is transmission from the developed world – the US predominantly, Europe, Australia – and the developing world.

So those nodes delivering the courses… These are institutions with the buildings and architecture up front, used to legitimise the offering. Princeton, Harvard, etc. all present themselves in the MOOC via images of their physical campus, imposing buildings.

The form of transmission in MOOCs is largely video. Either head and shoulders videos, or to a room. I will come back to that…

So we have the idea of transmission in a very one way direction. But one interesting reaction and example against that concept is an institution considering the homely, and to domesticate what can be troubling about the global.

So this is al philright(?) who works at the Kelly writers house. This is where the MOOC is from. This is a significant presentation of the MOOc space. Al invites us in. He’s inviting us into the world of contemporary literary poetry world. It’s authentic. And you can go and visit. In that video you meet those working at that house. All of these people talk about the kitchen, the food, etc, and photographs of the community, this family who have visited the house are prominent. The videos are also notably al and some of his students discussing issues. He does most of the talking though.

And indeed some edinburgh students taking this MOOC tried to recreate the video in their own kitchen. It’s a domestic scene recreated in domestic ways. Students love the video tour, being able to see the place. And many ended their comments by saying “I wish one day I could make it”. Seems to be an acknowledgement that this won’t entirely work, the whole globe can’t visit.

And I wanted to move to the third kind of space. I hope I gotta cross transmission. And welcoming in. Simplistically these seem very separate, but how might we overcome this?

So this Part I’ve called the overwhelming… I am privileged to teach on an eLearning and digital cultures MOOC here. And we encouraged students to create digital artefacts. One of the prominent reactions to that was of overwhelming nene being overwhelmed, lots of somewhat negative comments there… But I wanted to flip that a bit. Some students responded visually to that chaos. We had a visual task in the MOOC, and we saw reimagined Tokyo tube maps, we see people falling through the rabbit hole. I think we saw are action to unfamiliar space – of neither dominant transmission not homeliness – in our MOOC.

But why is this interesting? Well seeing this student image of an overgrown house with the statement “yes, she’s home, she’s just a bit busy with edcmooc”. I like the idea of neither form dominant and structurally… The growth


Q: on the buildings front… When you ask them institutions are looking for conversion rates… May want that presentation for that reason
A: certainly one reason for that presentation I think, others too… Not a significant driver for our MOOC, only a few sign ups from it.

Q: that first type of presentation is about imagining yourself there. That second type was about community… What emerged from your space?
A: I’m integer in that… Emerged from students, also from technologies… Interested in what came about spatially, rather than what we designed.
Comment from Christine sinclair: when we were approached to do the MOOC was “just think what you could do with 1000 students” but we had 42k. But it was exploration for us
A: what interested me most here was the focus on the individual and how things come together.

Terry Lynn Thomson – mobile work learning, spatial re orderings and digital fluencies

I am ingested in learning outside formal spaces. Savage , Rupert and law 2010 talk about the digital being bound up with reterritorialising space. Massey 2005 talk about multiplicity. I conducted research with 23 workers in Kenya, Rwanda and Canada and looked at their online learning practices – their engagement with others. Piecing together networks and materialities both with scale and focus, and having to live with fragmentary/also lashing things together… There were interactions that highlighted mobilities. But certain Immobilities were significant…

Many devices that are theoretically mobile do not, in fact, create or enable mobility. Ingold 2012 talks about the tensions of becoming here. Participants described complex cheorographies around his technologies, dictated by task, power supply access, etc. so material and relational practices really made these spaces. The making of mobile space was complex, the physical with the digital. Hemmet 2005 talks about the reassertion of the spatial in these types of ways.

Actually contrary to rhetoric, there are ,any frustrations and Immobilities. And for some of my participants the materials were struggling to become more mobile, in the same way as his gestures of mobility.

So four things here. The issue of digital fluency: flipping from one to one, to many go many; negotiations of openness, etc. so one way educators could support adult learners is to help them find ways through spatial re orderings and mobilities of work learning practices.


Q: how do you educate around these mobilities
A: I don’t know, what do you think?
Q: seems tricky…but needed…
A: some school areas around the world attempt to do this, but in the context of a world where many adults do not have that understanding… Lots of questions here…

Q: I’ve been a learning technologist for a while, quite good at this… But still don’t understand everything… Don’t we need to educate ourselves before educating others,..
A: one of my participants Makori, an it consultant, took an online course, took the idea of one authoritative sources, and he had so many devices, wanted an iPad but

Q: I encouraged my students to share an app they find really useful. One way to address this is to be transparent and open, rather than apologetic for using devices
A: well one of the interesting things about entrepreneurs and the self employed is that this stuff is so time consuming, so difficult, can be so hidden

Q: how do you educate for digital fluency. Doesn’t use really do that?
A: technologies can educate you but if that’s how you want to learn… Well that’s about how you choose to be critical… I do think that all technologies try to lead you down a certain path… So I don’t know how you do that exactly.

Policy networks, database pedagogues and the new spaces of algorithmic governance in education – Ben williamson

I want to talk about new sorts of actors in education. Some on schools, some relating back to that. But I want to talk about several elements. The idea of policy mobilities – new structures and styles of decentralised, educational policy and network governance. To talk about mobile bodies and algorithmic traces. And finally the kind of mobile code spaces.

So I really want to ask questions about how new policy networks are seek b to reimagine education. Trying to map relationships between new kinds of actors and relationships between actors, and also the COde acts in Education project (link?).

Part of this idea is about government not being just my about central government, but also actors across public and private and third sectors. We see flows of policies from, say, private sector flowing into ouboic sector. Hultqvest 2001(?) talks about such flows.

In education we see educational governemce through mobile cross sector policy. Et works – govt departments and initiatives, commercial companies, NGOs, philanthropic organisations for instance. Steve ball (2012) has written about this wide range of actors in educations policy.

For me I am interested in the idea of their sectors, local controls think tank demos, nominet trust, the young foundation, nests, big society network, the innovation unit. All of these organisations seek to reimagine and reconfigure ouboic space through networks and digital platforms, they are also connected to a global picture of organisations nudge think tanks and policies are on the move, partly through these networks.

So we see these cross sector policy networks, labs, intermediaries, reimagining education. Moving from a sort of bureocratic place to a more individualised data driven concept.

So going to mobile bodies I want to talk about networked learning, database pedagogues, and the distribution of learners and learning.

So I wanted to start with the RSA, the Royal society of arts. They have a programme called Open Minds with particular curriculum eye, and they are also looking at using networks – see n squared report by Paul Or,arod. They blend the technical and the social networks at the heart of oublic sector learning.

The second area is The Innovation Unit’s report in learning futures – a report talking about institutions as “base camps”, in “learning commons” and “extended learning relationships”. And discussion of an innovation ecosystem. The same organisation has created reports like 10 ideas for 21st century education – calling for radical re imaginings of education, the disappearance of classrooms as spaces. Talking by out tailored and individualised learning. And particularly computer generated playlists of videos, seminars, small discussion groups, and 1:1 learning. Also a lot here about digital expertise, social networking for peer to peer research. And you can see here a collapse across institutions and relationships… By new kinds of actors.

And I wanted to also look at the education foundation – claims to be first independent think tank for education in the uk. One of their big reports has been a We book guide for educators, and taking that tool, mobilising it to the educational domain. That as an infrastructure it is transferable. Some complexities here, the horizontal nature of Facebook connections may not be what we want to reshape all educational relationships to be.

So we see a new expert knowledge and vocabularies of human behaviour and socialite based on theories from social media… Of digital commons, of smart mobs… Many of these are coming from places like Facebook. Facebook have an in house sociologist and data science team, those practices are coming through these kinds of actors into what we do… As if our networked social brains have evolved to demand networked social media. This may reflect Hacking 2007 ideas of addressing kinds of people, who others (Facebook say) imagine we are.

And that brings us to the issue of database pedagogues. Data is increasingly important to our understanding of pedagogy. Mackenzie (2012) talks about this centrality of a databases to the world.

Nests digital education programme very much focuses on learning analytics which gathers data about the learner in order to generate ideas or prescriptions for further learning. So we see things like Knewton. It gathers data on the learner, uses psychometric data etc. to “personalise” the data to the learner. So the learner is visualised and understood as data, metrics, numbers, and increasingly visualisations… The actor is transformed in order to be acted upon.

beluga markets itself as a smart service able to behave with intelligence, combines “intelligent data” collected by educational institutions with students own social media “off put data” to reshape the experience for the learner.

These code spaces are about automated and anticipatory governing and data doppelgänger a, production of objectified individuals whose data is used to classify and sort the individuals into types.

So we can see then that these kinds of activities, these kinds of bodies… Urey 2007 talks about us not as private corporeal bodies, but as bodies distibuted across systems through our trails etc.

So what I’ve begun to try to trace out is the idea of networked governance with wide range of players seeking to reimagine education through vocabularies, expert knowledges and techniques of dpnetworks and database providers. Governance through code spaces, understanding the learner through data traces. Activating learns through automatic pedagogues


Q: I’m not convinced the network is determining the governance but reflecting those back for financial/political reason. And much of this data reflects growing commercialization of the student, data use mirrors that used in corporate contexts.

A: There is flow between these sectors and some of that is from government to these organisations.

Q) what methods are you using here?
A: that’s exactly the focus of methodological workshops we have been running. Partly with data scientists and programmers. Need hybrid methods, beyond more comfy social science. Ethics. I’m trying to follow the actors… Tracing the ideas and how they coalesce. I don’t tend to go and speak to them, although I have spokent to the director of research at demos on their new social media analysis tools

Q: all sorts of discourses about understanding the learner. We have the official discourse. Why is this policy move towards disruption, removing gates to traditional education. Where’s it going. What’s the benefits.
A: not sure I can answer that directly, I’m more interested in tracing the routes. Looking at a book edited by Martin law and ? Rice. They look back to the worlds fairs and this fascination with data goes a long way back.

Disrupting the illusion of sameness: the importance of making place visibke in online learning – Phil Sheil and Jen Ross

Jen isn’t here today as she is en route to Dallas. I want to use her journey to start thinking about maps… So her route from Heathrow to Dallas passes many cities… Comparing that airline map to this map of a journey by elephant – very detailed, very differnt.

So I will come back to maps… In education we see these ideas of learners quietly reading. Learners works together in ordered structured spaces. But I don’t think these imaginings particularly gel with the formal learning environments… Blackboard collaborate for instance. Some spaces reflect sameness.s they literally reflect our own faces back to us. Drawing on Sulla and djallalwer? Talk about education beyond the nation state, as a response to globalisation. But how may the realities be similar or differnt.

Some of my own colleagues work in Africa where only five hours of power were available. One student required a synchronous session be rescheduled because of restrictions on internet access in Egypt.

So Jen and I wanted to reflect on out own students. Students were able to indicate where they were located on the map, or favourite places… In some cases mini biographies emerge, often with temporal aspects “I work here, I live here, I went to a conference here.”. This allowed students to show spaces important to them…

Second example from the DiCE group, one task was creation of my digital postcard from participants on the MSc in a digital education: a photo, some text, some sound. For instance a computer with a cat and the noise of purring.

So Jen and I wanted to think about sameness and difference in digital education contexts.


Q: could you talk more about distanced cosmopolitanism
A: particularly about dan Alger wrote an earlier paper on embodiment which is also interesting here.

Q: have you looked at how the student imagined the student
A: no but that would be interesting. But on that world map the staff took place too.
Q: I was talking to someone yesterday about imposter syndrome… Maybe that understanding of how the students imagine us might have a real impact for us as teachers.

Wider discussion

Q: Ben, that was an interesting overview. What is exciting, what is concerning… How does this data and doppelgänger a stuff relate to, say, open minded news
A – Ben: I’m not opposed to data analytics… A long as we area ware of how the data is generated… And how the system is interpreting the data and understanding the learner. Vying little critical work on that area. I am interested to better understand that. And what goes into those sorts of technical fix for defined problems
Q: what is the panel excited about. And what are you worried about.
A – Ben: I’m excited about the opportunity for research in layered code spaces here.. Software lays on top of but also underplays everything, managing how educational institutions function.
A – sian: exciting but real challenge is that the institution is so bound to campus, and to nation state. And difficult to think about how we challenge that
A – robin: I came out of foucoultian and Marxist analysis so I, concerned about those analytics… In terms of MOOCs and the monetisation of it… Obvious way to do this is to sell user data on as Facebook and Google do. But I remain optimistic about the use of technology for citizen science and citizen social science.

Comment: I’m fascinated by visualisations, by the manipulation a and map projections that distort reality. A lot of this is the methods questions… There area. Load of people structuring the language that shapes the world we engage in. Because they talk in code. Literally. I know that some digital humanities people coopt that, say “oh I, the social scientist”. How do we have a dialogue rather than handing social science over to those coding
A – jeremy: I think the key thing is to not draw the line. Seems to be driven by computer science, social network analysis… So we Need to engage. That code that underlies it…. We have this thing where we have to visualise to understand the code… And that could be more productive
Comment: numbers have been important for a long time. Combine that, with the visual, and the data doppelgänger who can be brought and sold… Is that a way to instantiate, to create a more sophisticated other self? In to way that may be easier to move, or commodify…
A-Ben: john hannay(?) talks about we make spaces manageable… Making the individual knowable, inspectable etc. we don’t often see the data, but the visualisation that is one step away…
A- sian: maybe that’s how we decentralise assessment – look at a students visuals at the end of the course!
Comment: isn’t half the problem that I don’t know my doppelgänger until I come up against some sort of problem – rejection for a mortgage or something?
A – Ben: and that data is constantly being recombined, reshaped, it’s an active practice or active accomplishment. Like rutherford’s work on a data analytics in children’s services
Comment: but I’m a really minor part of that dominant system, I’m a very small part of this…
A – Terry: I think when we talk about mobilities… Those maps, those spaces all disappear when points on a map… But doing that, reimagining the spaces, takes away from the specifity of space and the context…

Comment: I’ve been in conversations about big data and visualisations… Often presented with a visualisation as a done deal..
A-Ben: the concept of data not being theory free but not being an educational theory
Comment: or the issue of “we don’t need theory, we have data!”
A – robin: for us as educators the idea of education and learning sire ally hollowed out. There isn’t one shared understanding. We need to strongly re articulate what we mean by educational spaces or learning spaces. To some extend all spaces are learning spaces. Bernstein was against the idea of all spaces being pedagogised but, to some extent, that’s what we do.

Conference plenary

Christine Sinclair is introducing the discussion session. And we will be starting hearing impressions from different people on what has been taking place, what we have been doing. And we should have time for some discussions afterwards.

Jeffrey on the hot seat discussions
These take place ahead of the conferences. They are an opportunity for discussion, for reflection, often amongst those with more robust perspectives. The discussions took place on a site linked from the main site. You can find each of these online, including some who weren’t about to join us at the conference in person.

These discussions are about widening nerve extending the space… We look for input, to hear reflections on those discussions. So I want to recognise and thank those involved. These are exciting opportunities to have that sort of interactions. Eve heard really interesting papers here, and discussion, but there isn’t always opportunity to dig a little deeper. To engage in dialogue, to engage where this really happens. To understand what networked learning is really all about, and to put into practice what it is we talk about. And I hope we can get more direct input – if you took part, what was that experience like. Please do think about that, what could we do, and how can we look at that In the future.

Comment: as an experience of a newcomer to the conference for me it was great just to read everyone’s comments and get into it… Although tricky to get into the discussions sometimes. Display sometimes quite confusing, sometimes hard to follow… So layout could be easier to navigate.

Christine: it was in Ning this year wasn’t it?

Jeffrey: yes, we’ve used ning for the last two but other technologies before

Terry Lynn: I found it so useful taking ideas from those hit seats to feed into our paper, that was an incredible gift for us.

Martin: that was part of the idea of them… Not sure many have mentioned the hot seats during their presentations

Terry Lynn: we did that.

Christine: thanks to Jeffrey for the hot seats and the SCHED.

Jeffrey: yes, and feedback welcome on both of those.

Marshall dozier – doctoral symposium
Reporting on behalf of group of Tim fawns! Phil Sheil and jeremy Knox. Like all good students we made a bit of trouble. And like all good parties there were gate crackers and that made the sessions all the more fun. We questioned multimodality. We were introduced to the idea of “Skatology of digital sociology” from Tim o’Keefe. We also benefitted from mentors stirring up our discussions at the session. And we came to a really messy and interesting collective understanding of digital technologies.

Christine: the twitter feed really captures that event. And many of those who saw that wished they’d been three!
Marshall: like all good parties!

Reflections on the conference – steve fuller
Thank you for inviting me as an outsider. I’ve been trying to figure out just what this community is. The conference has run for 18 years when clearly networked learning meant something else entirely.

Are you a professional grouping? Neil Selwyn”s opening talk, which not all agreed with, called for that sense of criticality that might enable you to colonise an authoritative space in a productive way. Let me say where I would more strongly sit, which is this so of grouping in relation to the institution and the higher education organisation. How will this group be seen by HE administrators looking at the problems and concerns. You need a more defined idea of the university – it is not just a space. But this group is in a good space to understand this as a group looking at technologies mediating all aspects of the university today.

The other side is of this is research… My senses is of importing to this field, not exporting – although digital droppings may be a great contribution here – but where are the contributions, the concepts feeding out to other fields. Of you want to develop this field professionally you need to develop it in a more serious way…

One thing that frustrates me about this, and other fields with a support type function is that of observation, looking in. But it seems there is more of my responsibility not just to observe but to see problems at head, issues coming up and to offer suggestions and advice. And that means that I think you have a privileged and positive impact that you could make.

Comment: I think networked learning thinks of itself as being critical. You describe it as in support role. I understand that in a technical way. But there is increasingly a professional world of educational technology but networked learning sees itself as a serious and rigorous research event, at distance from a field that is professionally located in support role, where literature is often grey and funded by those with a particular agenda. But I took from your talk that we have to articulate that better so that others can see and understand it.

Comment: I really like that idea of colonising networked learning. I was thinking also after Neil’s keynote, talking about being critical and having the agenda of pessimism. But I’d like to see more positivism and action. Wondering how we could make something similar. I think at edinburgh you have maybe done that with the MOOC! But I’d like to think about how we. Can do that more.

Comment: Steve’s observations as. An outsider who has spent sometime with us are really worth us thinking about, particularly if we have set up artificial boundaries around ourselves, rather than crying out if we feel misunderstood – I say this as so done from a field that has complained about being misunderstood but it has been their/own fault.

Comments on the conference by former co-chair David
As a conference we really come from the perspective of pedagaoguey as a focus rather than technology. We came in around open pedagaoguey in 1998. We’ve moved away from that towards concepts like online trust, communities in online learning… And how that has been exhibited throughout the conferences. And more recently in the book series coming out of the conferences. How that has captured the feeling coming out of networked learning… Seeing the shifts and history of the space.

I talk about practice because even though we are researchers what we look at is so much about practice, about how we put things into practice. But we also see a move towards networks and how networks work in that sort of disembodied ways and what we y to achieve in networks… Away from pedagoguey in some ways… But reflecting our need to attract students. Add we are seeing technology perhaps trying to take over our role? Is it a meaningful thing? How does it compare to the thoughtful pedagogues within networked learning, and the issues of deep learning and pedagoguey? And our values here? I’m not sure about the answer but I am concerned about the possible consequences of disembodied learners understood through their data… So I am interested to look forwards to consider whether we focus on values, on pedagogies, away from MOOCs for attracting students…

Comments on the conference from former co-chair – Vivienne
I will take a different tack but that will surprise no one who knows both David and I. Networked learning has always been concerned with the role of the university and the insitution. We do aim to be mindful of the role of the individual in the networked world. We have always been thoughtful about who we ask, what our responsibilities are to ourselves and to others in this world. And with the huge range of papers this week we need to be critically thoughtful and aware about how technology is changing how we engage with, make sense of, and respond to the world.

Comment, Sian Bayne, university of edinburgh: what I’ve seen networked learning become is something we desperately needas a. Field. A space for critical space for discussion around what technology is doing to learning. We were so excited to host it here as it is the key thing in the year. So I hope we continue doing this and focusing on sometimes risky research in this space.

Vivienne: I was discussing with colleagues why this conference has become this space… I think it is because the networked learning raises those issues… So the networked learning becomes to disappear

Comment: I want to put in a plea for networked learning to not just be about technology, to not just be about HE. There are plenty of conferences for both of those. The interesting stuff here is about the impact of technology of learning, and of learning outside and beyond the university.

Martin (current cochair): the external factors have more pushed that. Maybe we need to think about articulating better the pedagogical theories we are developing, informing practices for learning. For me it’s profession learning, networked spaces… Not just HE for me.

Comment: I want to refer back to David’s comments… The axiomatic nature of networked learning makes it special, and different, and those underpinnings are crucial to differentiate us from other fields we touch shoulders with regularly.

Comment: my take on this is that in 1998 university websites were left to departments, development was very open… And we have moved away from that. We may not just be about technology but we have to engage, we have to udmerstand,otherwise we fail to understand the code. How else to avoid Facebook funding some policy somewhere that shapes our world. We have to engage with technologists, and to understand the code.

Steven: I agree with all of that.

Comment: we invited Judy Marshall to the last event, some scratched their heads as she applied sustainability to networked learning… But what other technology conference would do that! I also want to guard against seeing the social network as the meaning of networks… I would move against that. We need to think of networks in that broader sense…

Jeffrey: there are some nice definitions on the website there. Much of the discussion is about what networked learning means… It sounds like all of the possible understandings are valid… And useful when explaining to others what we are doing when we attend these events. And when we think about what was that, how does this apply to us… ?

Christine: I think that’s a very nice point to leave this discussion on! And with that over to our conference co-chairs martin and Donald?

Martin: I think that’s a nice point, reflection and bringing things together, for the next conference, our tenth anniversary. I was wondering how many review papers we actually have. Maybe for the next conference it might be a nice theme to think about… As well as looking back, to look forward.

Donald: I think that is a good idea… We know that the conference will be… Somewhere… In 2016. Probably also within Europe. Watch this space! I think it’s been a wonderful conference. And we have a huge list of people to thank.

So we would like to thank our keynotes steve fuller, and to neil Selwyn in absentia (steve receives a gift, and notes he has homework!), thank you to sian Bayne, Christine Sinclair and fiona Lennox, and Jen Ross and Hamish Macleod for all of their work organising this. Thank you to Marshall dozier, jeremy know, Phil Sheils, and Tim fawns for a wonderful wonderful doctoral symposium. Thank you also to Louise and the staff at the conference centre. And thanks to Jeffrey for the hot seats! And thank you to tom and to steve wright for their work on the hot seats. Thanks again for all the hot seat presenters. And there are two other people to thank. Alice jesmont and Chris jones, for those that know the, Alice continues, in many way, the spine of the conference providing administrative continuity. And finally we’d like to thank David and Vivienne for all of their work on the conference since 1998… And with that safe journeys home and we will see you in two years time!


 April 9, 2014  Posted by at 9:05 am Events Attended, LiveBlogs Tagged with:  1 Response »
Apr 072014

Today and Wednesday I am at the Networked learning Conference 2014. I will be attempting to LiveBlog the sessions I go to but, as I’ve been struck with a headcold, I’m going to make a stronger than usual caveat that there may be some errors, typos, etc.

Sian Bayne is welcoming us to the university of edinburgh and to the city in general. She is here representing the DiCE group, organisers of today’s event. Sian is saying that this is the best research orientated conference in our area, and always a highlight of the year. She is also giving an introduction to the city – some genuine highlights and some entertaining words of caution.

And now over to the conference co-chairs **. They are welcoming us to the ninth networked learning conference, the first was in 1998. Huge thanks being extended to the local organisers, and to those that have been supporting the co-chairs with the programme.

Online pre conference events – hot seats and online discussions pre event and post event. Thank you to those helping to facilitate this. Also note the app, SHED. We have colour coded doors to match the app now. And also a favour to ask. We want to create a book of the papers, and we want to crowdsource opinion on the three most interesting papers that have really stuck you over the event to feed into that. And thanks are being extended to our two keynotes. And a welcome for any feedback, new ideas to engage and promote the conference etc. do provide feedback – and I’m sure that extends to those following online as well…

Christine Sinclair is thanking Marshall, Tim, Phil and jeremy who organised the doctoral symposium this morning. And handing over to Chris Jones to introduce our opening keynote Neil Selwyn.

Neil Selwyn – networked learning in 2014 – why it is crucial to be critical

Neil opens with a referendum joke! He has taken the title of the conference and wanted to give a spin on that. I tend not to go to too many ed tech things, I take a critical take on this stuff… Sometimes I’m kind of wheeled out to be a panto villain but actually from the papers, from this mornings symposium, I think there are some great critically minded people here, so hopefully my talk will be about empowering rather than converting you.

I’m a ferocious self-googler. When I do that I find that my impact is terrible – I get raised early and argued against. Or I have said something sarcastically and it has been quoted without the quoted appreciating the sarcasm – his one Wikipedia mention is in that direction. I should be pleased I’m on Wikipedia… But whenever I google myself it is entertaining. I do see undergrad blogs that are fantastic – students tell it as it is. One student suggested I “just need a cuddle”, it’s amazing to see your work reflected that way.

Social media back channels can be particularly interesting… I was Ed Media in 2010 – an enormous conference. I went on 1.10. Within a few minutes in as being accused of being a naysayer…

So today’s hashtag is #nlc2014… Backchannel with caution!

In one respect I should expect critical responses to being critical. One of the first phrases I learned in Australia was “such it up princess!”. I like the idea of the young people, the who cares “haters gonna hate” attitude. But I get a bit dispondent, I want to do some things better… I want to have more impact, I want to makes. Stand for galvanising the critical mindset. Conversations and questions we should be asking. I want to make a pitch for reclaiming the “c” word.

The digital revolution hasn’t taken place. We live In a world where the same inequalities from thirty forty years ago are still there, to some extent even more entrenched. Educational and networked learning still have a lot to prove. We are beset by the no significant different phenomenon, so questions we have to ask. Education is really digital but it’s often mundane. We use PPT, VLEs, turnitin… But often a digital gloss and education having same radiations, structures etc. we were promised jet packs but all we have is PowerPoint and MOOCs. We have to think carefully about this whole hype, hope, disappointment cycle. The dies of “technology meets classroom, classroom wins”. Take the MOOC. 2008, looks so exciting, idea of cMOOCs, but look where we are now in 2014 where we have these subverted, captured by these different agendas. We seem to be amongst disruption and change… But generally this field is disappointing, be interested in state of the actual, rather than state of the art. We aren’t stupid. We know this. But we tend to turn a blind eye.

If you saw Latchem 2014 railed against the quality of papers being submitted to BJET. Saying “there revolution is always about to happen”.

#2 being critical is not in the ed-tech DNA

I think people in this world tend to be very positive. If any of you follow Lev Manovich you’ll have seen him having a rant in December about how every event seems to be about celebration. I think there are great parallels between contemporary art and our field. Those outside of contemporary art don’t see the point, see it as self indulgent. And those within it feel they are changing the world. A critique here calls out “accomplice paranoia”, the fear of bursting the bubble. Vito Campanella 2010 talks about contemporary at world constantly eluding the possibility of critical judgement, leaving slace only for friendly and convivial sharing of nothingness.

There are two reasons I think some of this is true of our field. Firstly we really want to make the world a better place. “Technology enhance learning” or “computer assisted learning”, making the defecto role of those working in this space is of the positivity of technology, it only having a positive impact. And that’s true of technology and society in other contexts…. The one laptop per child slogan “not every child in the world has a laptop, this is a bug and we are going to fix it”, that kind of mindset can lead to madness.

I think there is a real need to question whether
Are we afraid to “rock the boat”. We don’t want to bite the hand that feeds us. It’s not in our interest to say that this is emporers new clothes. It’s not exclusively technology. Education generally seems to be about creativity and innovation these days, not about criticality at all – see stearn 2013, Communication in critical studies.

So there is much to be lost in being critical. My problem is that (a) education and technology does not seem to be working but also (b) money is averted towards these initiatives. We need to calm down a bit. We need to slow down a abit. Stop being desperate to find the next big thing. And we. Need to grow up a bit. We are stuck in wow land. Or a teen place of wanting to smash it to the man by being disruptive – the open tech community can be particularly guilty of this. We have to be more adult, worldly, cynical. In a positive way. Criticality can be positive, it can be constructive (lovink 2008). I think this idea of being realistic, perhaps even fatalistic can be really helpful, better than current idealism.

But how can we do this? Three approaches…

#1 the dictionary definition (of being critical)

So actually thinking about both merits and faults of the worth. This is being sceptical rather than cynical. It means asking difficult questions. I love these questions from Sonia Livingston: q: what is really going on? Q: how can. This be explained? Q: how can Things be done otherwise?

So I think we. Have to more specifically ask:
– what underlying values/agendas are implicit
– in whose interests does this work? Who benefits?
– what is new here?
– what are the unit tended consequences… What are the second order effects?
– what are the potential gains… What are the potential losses
– what are the social losses being addressed?

#2 in Praise of pessimism

I recommend reading dienstag 2006, getting over the idea that not all problems can be solved. It’s not about being defeatist. But to approach educational technology from the perspective of expecting nothing. Gramscis idea of being a pessimist by intention, an optimist by will. But we should have modest intentions. Try to be more honest about not believing we a re sating a Revolution.

#3 Critical theory

I’ve been getting interested in this, from Frankfurt group onwards. Increasingly interested in thinking about how we can address educational technology from a critical theory perspectives. Ed techs re profoundly political processes. There are issues of power, control, domination, conflict, resistance, struggle. There are concerns with empowerment, equality, social justice and participatory democracy.

Nigel thrift, the philosopher, has these found aspects we can bring to research… Of bringing a powerful sense of engagement with politics and the political, a consistent belief that there much be better ways of doing things than are currently found in the world, a neccassarily orientation to a critique of power and expression…

There is some great stuff on sociology if tech. Christian Fuchs social media a critical introduction? David berry’s critical theory of education. And nick dyer witherfords games of empire. So much in this space, though not in the digital education world.

So what can we really learn here…

#1 power and politics – dominance and equality. The nasty bits that get in the way if our idealism

#2 asking questions, testing limited, pointing out contradictions. Interrogate, poke at these ideas, test the logic. You don’t have to have the alternative answers to critique other work.

#3 doing something and for I g change. It’s not critical in the negative way, you can force change through being critical. You don’t need to solve through a new app. (See Fuller and Goffey 2012 – Evil media). I have a lot of sympathy with design approaches, but you cannot have design as an alternative to criticality. You can’t design your way out of all social problems. Design Asa. Critical act in itself has real merit though.

Let’s just finish with how we might move stop… The five habits of five highly disaffected people if you will..

#1 need to depersonalise how we perceive EdTech – not what your family, your students, your grandchildren do. You’re experiences are not the general experience.

#2 need to be nasty. Or at least disagreeable. Part of why I am drawn to those critical tweets. There should be conflict.we. Shouldn’t all agree with each other. This is why I recommend Audrey Watters on twitter and her hack education blog.. She is snarky and awkward Ina brilliant way. But…

#3 we have to do this with humour and good grace, you can make great points through humour. Audrey’s buzzword bingo for SXSWEDU is great for this. We need to be aware of the importance of language, it’s fun but the underlying point is serious.we. Need to be playful in our deconstruction of the field.

#4 need to be contrary, contradictory, uncertain. Danah Boyd’s new book is it’s complicated. Geoffrey seimans stopped doing keynotes because of his concern at the rock star and solution driven nature of the space, he wrote a great blog post on this.

#5 need to be persistent and prominent. I saw great papers this morning but this group are not typical of the networked learning or technology enhanced learning space. The most interesting people who are most critical seem to swiftly move onto other areas. You need to beat the system, stay at it. A message for me too. The field is full of rubbish… Hmm… Did I say that out loud!

One of the most recent books I write was distrusting educational technology – neil Selwyn. My own book publishers cocked up the title to “distributing educational technology” at the launch. That’s how unthinkable criticism in this area is.

The questions we ask shapes the way we are living. John wheeler, talking about quantum physics said:

“Reality is defined by the questions we put to it”

We need to define ourselves with critical questions… And what better way to start than here at this conference…?!


Q – Bonnie Stewart, Canada: I appreciate the provocation but… I’m a big fan of Audrey Watters too. But she’s not nasty, she punches up. She’s critical on the one speaking to the many level… Is nastiness more authentic when you talk peer to peer versus up to the powers that be?

A: I love when she punches up to the powers that be. Yes, peer to peer… You talks this morning about social networks and digital scholars… Between ourselves we need humour. Nasty isnt maybe right. Maybe snarky or spiky is better.

Q- Laura chenovitz, university of Cape Town: since you moved to Australia what’s your take on the geopolitical landscape in technology trends and education and technology

A: I am fascinated by global brands, by international development. It’s another critical aspect that is really important. The big business of this is astonishing. The $7 billion industry of educational technology is fascinating. One of the reasons I wanted to work in saucy trails was to tweak my outlook a bit.

Q: I enjoyed that talk much more than I really wanted to! The point I grapple with… If you have the luxury where what you produce in your daily work is critique that’s great. For many their job relies in taking action… To what extent can a critical mindset be part of those contrained circumstances. Perhaps partly it’s about the scope of faction, what is doable, what actions one might take. Think that gels with being modest in effects. But then I wonder that if you have freedom tow ct as critical commentator you can trump and squash that local action

A: I am privileged to be a tenured academic, I think we have a requirement to be critical. I am fascinated by danah boyd. She finished her ohd and went to work for Microsoft, criticised for working for the man. And if you see what she does there, she has a great team of critically minded researchers there. She is working within and to influence Microsoft. I’ve done work for Microsoft, for big business before. You can either be a teenager and reject them, or you can try to engage and influence. So academics have a need to be critical, but you can work within other spaces in critical ways to shape those places.

Q: I think a lot of people working on critical takes on education, get along to wollawonga? And meet the authors of becoming critical. I agree with much of what you said. We are tied to assessment regime, and we don’t get credit for that in a way. These are more than dialogical objects.

A: I don’t claim to be totally original here. I’m trying to bridge those working on critical theory and critical takes on education, and to technology education. They tend to sit rather separately at the moment. It has been possible to get funding for critical approaches but it is quite difficult.

Q: do you actually need a cuddle? What I can’t square with what you are saying… It appeals to the intellect but much of the emotions are negative. But when compared to happy smiling sales pitch of commercial educational spaces. We can develop critical voices but when a salesman turns up with that smiling picture where is the money going to come in?

A: I think that’s where humour and snarkiness comes in, and can help us here.

Q: thank you for your talk. I have a question about what exactly you are critical of at the end of the day. Is about technology not delivering what it is supposed to. Or does it deliver but it’s in the wrong hands politically…

A: there is a need to say this in this field, more than in sociology and ethnography space. I have a problem with promises of technology. It can be good. It hasn’t realised potential. It can be a Distraction and financially and intellectually a real diversion. If we invested like this in education generally what impact might ewe have. Resources a re finite one cucatkpn, looks at the California iPads for school kids debacle. I have no issue with big business per say.

Q- Claire westrick, university of Warwick: I do live in the real world but OA of that is applying for funding… Given how I have to do that, and to place the university brand how do I calm down, slow down and grow up.

A: VCs and politicians work in kind of five year cycles. We have to be savvy about why we do the things we do. Convenient stories play well to audiences we are working with. It’s about changing the conversation. But to takea. Historical take on technology and education, maybe make decision makers think differently with that longer context. I think that’s possible.

Q-cal meany, Uni of Toronto: as someone looking to get a job, looking to supervise me… Being critical can be so hard. Finding the right supervisor can be tough… Any advice?

A: I’d say play the game, publish a lot, tick the boxes. PhDs are such a privileged position to push back boundaries, Dow hat you want. Probably easier to do in land than anywhere else. You an. Make your research be useful and to be constructive, it’s getting the balance right. It’s difficult. Not sure I can help with advice on getting a. Job.

Q- elem rose, Uni of Brunswick Canada: I’ve been writing critically on you cation for a while. I wanted to ask about pessimism… I seem to be stuck in that… Technology seems to suck up our time so much. How do you deal with pessimism.

A: I’m a bit if a contrarily. If everyone was critical I’d probably be enthusing for technology. None of us could work without technology. I think pessimism is good. And technology is really good too. Amazing inert action on screen, on twitter, often far richer! Maybe I’m arguing against myself.

Q: I thought that was terrific. I wanted to pick up on what we do next… T&l think about choosing our friends when we talk about thinking critically. We have our own choices in our own teaching. And there are people who are concerned by personal freedoms and justice who work outside the academy. I’ve done work with trade unions. There are charities as well. So thinking about our friends when we think about thinking critically.

A: absolutely. Thinking critically in our own teaching is really important. Teaching is really important. Similarly getting voices to news media etc., where real people are. The stuff that went on in future lab was often really good. Think tanks, outside the academy can be interesting. Do is I’m looking a t although they seem to be more design approach at the moment. Unions are important though, my latest book is on technology and the university brings some of these in. Hugely important.

Q: I enjoyed your talk. Looking at it you treat criticality as a method you can apply to everything. But I am sceptical of the validity of treating theses sorts of skills as general. There is no method of being critical, it’s being critical in specific contexts. But not that much solid stuff about how to be critical. In Denmark those critical of iPads are academics but they are being pushed out by politicians. So I guess is want to ask if your five bullets are genuinely a critical approach, is this just a straw Man to attack?

A: it’s a spectrum. And a disposition to add to the mix, a starting point. There are concrete projects.we. Are doing a project on open a data at Monash. E want to ask critical questions of data in schools. Asking critical questions, considering those who are not usually included in those discussions. May result in tools or apps, but it will certainly raise those conversations, those argument ts. But sure five take home messages is a bit pithy, I take that criticism.

Q: my own work is with practical teachers in secondary and HE. Looking at impact of technology on their working lives. Seems to be a lack of freedom in the ways teachers can talk about education without being perceived as Luddite. Still a really deterministic mindset in education than in ither appeal es. This seems important to publish… Where should I publish that?

A: that is important. And where to publish? well probably not an academic journal? Blogging and tweeting good but tends to still go to the ed tech bubble. So mainstream print press important. Publish as much as possible in as many places as possible. Often the weird little newsletter items get the most interest. Throw enough mud at the wall I think.

Q: I am coming from a country, turkey, where millions has been spent on iPads for schools. As scholars when we begin to ask our research questions they already have the iPads. I think we need to speed up. We have a new problem of non generalisability. So many studies, projects etc. but all so different and cannot be out together. In terms of research methods what do you think?

A: you are also coming from a country trying to ban twitter and YouTube. Really important and interesting factors in the concept. We have to move beyond technology as positive or not positive towards something more nuanced. Need politicians and leaders to think that way. If you get everyone iPads you have to not think that will raise money, improve grades etc. because those are not the questions to ask…

And with that, it’s off to coffee for us.

Perspectives on identity within networked learning – Jane Davis, Catherine Cronin, Joyce zeitzinger

We really do mean perspectives here… And this session is very much about making you think. The hashtag for this session is #nlcid

Jane Davis is starting first talking about:

Dimensions of identity and the student experience of networked learning
So who am I? I’m myself, things like my twitter profile, my professional role, my former student role. I’m particularly interested in us thinking about what it was like to be you in your last experience of being a student.

For me as a student being a student and a practitioner had a lot of overlap for a while…. At a given point being a student had more precedence than other roles. But when foster came to my college my student role had to take a. Back seat for a while. There is a high degree of porosity and merging, that all has a real impact on students and what they do…

I want you to think about your role when you were a student, I want you to think about your roles and how they overlapped…. (We have coloured paper and pritt stick to help!

We all have different diagrams here. No two of ours are the same… And that represents very different priorities – with students not being the most.

Peter Burke and ? Sanders talk about the nature of your identity standard as a student. Mark Smithers asked about this on twitter recently. I want you to think about what you felt when considering your student role identity. What influenced you? What shaped your perceptions of the student role? What did you expect to get out of being a student?

(We now have another activity, numbering possible expectations we may have had). Again. None of us match up exactly.

Can’t well (2007) reenergised Burke and Reitzes, 1991 work on student identities by bringing up the idea of dimensions of the student role identity:

– academic responsibility – about meeting objectives
– sociability
– intellectual curiosity
– personal assertiveness – goal orientated whether academic or not

All different continua. You have all the pressures of students roles. And we have all those expectations. And hey, we just called them students.

So in terms of impact… We have the salience of the student role identity (goals and priorities), and porosity of roles (trust, willingness to share). And lastly we have the relational nature of affordances of the learning place/space. Thinking of affordances as having a relational meaning. And then lastly thinking about David Whites idea of digital native continuum we think about the nature of engagement/practice with technology for learning (reflecting practices of visitor, tourist, tenant or resident).

And now over to Catherine Cronin

Networked learning and identity development in open online spaces

I want to use janes ideas as a springboard to move a level up and think about our interactions with students. I wanted to start with a quote from Joi Ito talking about education as a process entirely to do with context and experience.

Space prepares you to receive or to respond – from jenny mackness’ “sensing spaces”, royal academy of arts. So I want to talk a bit about teaching spaces, lee rainie and Barry well an talk, in networked, about networked individualism. Here networks are not bound by geography or family. Mobile technologies have only exaggerated and accelerated this. And temporality. danah boyd talks about space constructed through networked technologies, and the imagined collective by which this takes place (boyd 2010). Spaces used to be private by default, public by effort. Now we talk about Things being public by default, private by effort.

Alex couros talked about the networked teacher, building on the idea of the networked individual. The tools and media change all the time but the point is that we all are networked individuals. Looking at my own about.me website I very much curate a multimodal, immediate space rather than point to a static institutional page.

So how do networked teachers and networked students encounter each other? We both have these multiple spaces, how do we interact? Can define these in three ways perhaps, physical spaces, bounded online spaces, open online spaces. Some events use all three. But in terms of pedagogical choices and identity and power, it’s important to think about what’s possible and. What the advantaged and disadvantages of these spaces are.

In physical spaces we often have to work against the tyranny of rad hitecture.we can. Create live and vibrant communities with students in physical spaces. But we do have spatial and temporal constraints. Bounded online spaces do give us some more freedom, we are a little bit freer in how we express ourselves. But for instance students can only use their own birth certificate name in the LMS. And we have privileges in these spaces. Whereas in open online spaces we can choose to identify ourselves by our own name or representation, identity play can seem challenging.

Danny miller (2013) reflects that those different identities are there but not acknowledged in offline spaces. But open online spaces can be challenging all the same. And those open spaces are public by default, private by effort. Many students have confident online social identities but perhaps not confident scholarly or professional or similar identities. But we can model those, students can play with disposable student identities etc.

So looking at a visualisation generated via martin hawkseys tag explorer looking at #icollab which were discussions from students looking at social media across multiple institutions. They engage with students beyond the classroom and see instructors modelling themselves as. Students, breaking down the student/learner dichotomy.

Kris Gutierrez (2008) looked at language learning, found that all formal spaces were not effective. But if you creates. Third space, both formal and informal that can be more productive. About spaces like twitter, google+ something like that. Use some skills they may have to combine formal and informal learning. Students are learning that if we only engage in formal spaces there is an inauthentic divide there. So third spaces bridge informal and formal learning. And a bridge between intact groups and communities, and into bigger networks. It’s pretty scary to go out on your own as a Newbie to get out onto a hashtag but we can help students practice, to establish those literalicies.

We cannot deny these third spaces, and to only focus on formal spaces. – Etienne wenger (2010). Keri facer and neil Selwyn talk about the importance of learners practicing different identities.

And now over to Joyce seitzinger:

Curate me! Exploring online identity through social curation in networked learning
So I’m talking about ways in which people enact their identity through curation, or at least interacting with information resources. I wanted to look back at how we are talking about this. E.g. Siemensa and weller talk about “reduced resistance to information flow”, vent dear Kline focuses on cacti cities, learning by finding, learning by adding new information…

At the same time if you go online there is a term for interacting with information – just looking at google trends – is that term “curation”. As I researched this…. There is a journal of digital curation but that’s about data and archiving, curating artefacts not for an audience or time but generating massive collections which may be accessed sometime by someone. But if you search around content curation tends to be about driving traffic, SEO, quite a negative connotation. And then we have the idea of social curation, that’s what fascinates me…

So I want to kind of propose something of a. Definition of social curation:

“The discovery, selection,…. To be useful for the community” [full version needed]

So you have all these artefacts out on the internet. And you have a process (discovery, selection, collect, sharing). Many discovery tools here – twitter, Facebook, zite, flipboard… And you have the humans election la. And then there is the collection process and sharing – although you may not share things.

So that was a bit of a primer… But what are the opportunities here? You have Goffmans presentation of self, and the idea of impressions of self. Nowhere is that more apparent than in social collections. That can look like this – a Pinterest profile… [i note a nod to Portlandia’s put a bird on it in the mix there].

So that’s about enacting an identity through third party artefacts. Danah Boyd’s criteria for an SNS is about links between people, of that being articulated. But actually around social curation you might only connect around the artifact – see harro and? Pinterest study. Connection doesn’t have to occur to view or engage with artefacts. Online identities do not automatically require heavy personal disclosure. Curation is perhaps a good intermediary step for those unwilling to disclose but want to build an online identity.

Another issue you get on social media is the issue of collapsed context. The issue of not friending your students on above book say… Here again curation is a possible alternative. And the role being acted becomes clear from the context of the (Pinterest) board.

And another way to communicate around curation is through community identification through curation…

Which brings us to the next mapping activity… Using the digital visitor/digital resident diagram into a curation one… So map your curated collections

[private at one end, bounded in centre, open at other end; personal at top, institutional at bottom]

Can be interesting to think about which of those closed or bounded objects should be there, are those bounded collections mobile if you change roles? If. You have loads and loads of different tools maybe you need to tone it down. Good to take stock, to enact your identity, but not jump on every bandwagon.

And now we move to the plenary, an opportunity for questions, to have a. Conversation…. To discuss…

Comment: we were talking about how personal and institutional don’t seem right. Much more personal and professional.

Joyce: that’s dave whites axes and they liked at students. I think personal and professional might make more sense

Jane: and actually going back to earlier diagrams an opportunity to see how things mesh…

Comment: also maybe aligned more to discipline or profession rather than institution.

Comment: Catherine when you talk about the networked student, and of spaces. That’s kind of an outsider view. Student view here sees paths, activities etc. not in the separations of space.

Catherine: not sure if martin and leslie is here is very much about student perspectives. My work is about those interactions and where interactions take place…

Comment: you need to consider time in there too. If you focus too much on space you miss there

Catherine: yes, and there seems to be less constraints about time in open spaces

Comment: I wanted to ask about good curation and bad curation. You shouldn’t just dump stuff but leave some sort of comment, but then is that arrogant, is my comment important?

Joyce: I disagree with the perspective that you have to add something for it to be good curation. Just bringing those together is a form of added value and certainly a form of curation

Comment: can I add to that that I retweet things I don’t agree with at all but which I am curious about, want to see reactions to. To attribute this to me wouldn’t be correct.

Joyce: some people will say that on their profile but twitter as a space doesn’t neccassarily assume you agree

Comment: on that first bit what you said, Catherine , reminded me of the concept of liminal space.

Catherine: liminality is about moving towards, but luminiferous talks about a raw formative space. Away from either/or…

Comment: liminal space, classically, doesn’t mean having to move away or towards something. But of being in a tansitional space or identity.

Catherine: I need to explore that in relation to identity and power

Comment: on one of your slides you had a really big blob compared to others… You seem to assume that student is an identity that is desirable. A lot of negative connotations of the “student”.

Jane: the examples of roles is actually taken from my doctoral research. I found some students who wanted the archetypal student experience, and it was about being away from home, forming a social group etc. they felt that when visiting home still identified as a students. But we also had lots of mature students, lots of part time students where being a Student meant something so different. So when we think about learning environments we have to be very aware of those other roles and any assumptions about the holistic nature of them. The two profiles I showed though, those came from my research.

Comment: have any of you been talking about data identities. Tools like Netflix or spotify as rich spaces that curate us almost…

Joyce: really interesting. I was involved in a crowdfunded research project. We collected all tweets from this to build a networked diagram. Very rich. And could see how impact changed by tweeting In a particular way. Huge amount you can. Lenin. But tools like scoopit and Pinterest it can be harder to pull out data. And of course there is that whole black box aspect to much of this data.

Jane: Mark Hannibal on twitter tweets a lot about quantified self…

Please do keep discussion going on on the hashtag #nlcid.

And with that the session has finished.



 April 7, 2014  Posted by at 3:15 pm Uncategorized Tagged with:  2 Responses »