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Teaching with Technology

Where to for Scholarly Discourse?

Ross Priory, Scotland.
The last presentation here at ICE 3 is a group act by Bruce Ingraham, Gráinne Conole, Chris Jones, and George Roberts, who have also set up a group blog in preparation for this talk, which some of us have already contributed to. Their focus is especially on scholarly communication through new media environments - and they begin by noting that unfortunately few ICErs did respond to their original blog-based challenge, which in itself provides some insight on the extent to which scholarly discourses have changed so far. Why is this so - are the topics available too dull; is there too little time available to participate in such environments; or are emerging new media not suited to scholarly discourse (which could also mean that scholarly discourse is unsuited to the modern world, however). If we are not professing our disciplines to one another using such new media environments, however, how can we enocurage our students to do so? If we do not do so, then who will - the people formerly known as students?

Teaching Global Citizenship

Ross Priory, Scotland.
The next speakers here at ICE 3 are Leah Macfadyen and Anne Hewling, presenting on their experiences with a University of British Columbia online course in global citizenship, which they developed from scratch. Aims of the course were for students to develop an understanding of the concept of global citizenship, as well as ultimately to consider the impact they might have as global citizens within local, national, and international communities. Students within this (elective) course come from a very brad range of disciplinary backgrounds (and in fact also from the universities of Hong Kong and Melbourne, who were remote partners in the project).

Produsage and Education

Ross Priory, Scotland.
ICE 3 Audience It's a clear but frosty morning here in Scotland - for the first time in some 14 years, I've had to scrape ice off the windshield of my car today... We've reached the last day of ICE 3, and I'll be the first speaker, presenting on the implications, for the field of education, of the move from production to produsage (full paper here). I'll try to record the talk as well, and if all works out I'll post it up here some time soon the recording is below as well as here. For now, here is my Powerpoint... I must also apologise to Debra Ferreday and Vivien Hodgson for not blogging their talk - my laptop was in use to run the presentation.

Games and Learning

Ross Priory, Scotland.
Maggi Savin-Baden and Christine Sinclair (as well as their Second Life avatars Christine Sanders and Second Wind) are the last presenters at ICE 3 for today (full paper here). Both are students in the MSc in e-learning at the University of Edinburgh, which in part focusses on the use of digital game-based learning environments. They begin by describing their journeys into this degree, which were motivated for them as academic professionals in part by an interest in learning about what it means to be a student in the present university environment, and an interest in exploring possibilities for e-learning which were not covered by WebCT and other standard solutions.

Pedagogies of Productivity in the Modern Workplace

Ross Priory, Scotland.
As we approach the end of the second day at ICE 3, Karim Remtulla is the next speaker (full paper here). He is particularly interested in how e-learning connects with the realities of the workplace (both in terms of the experiences of recent graduates in transitioning to the workplace, and those of employees coming back to university for further education). Karim notes that the projections for e-learning are promising - it is now a US$300 billion market globally, while the World Bank's education portfolio stands at US$8.5 billion, and covers 86 countries. The dominant point of view on e-learning is that it is simply a process of learning from information which is delivered electronically, leaving us as learners to identify relevant information and convert it into meaningful and applicable knowledge - but this may be a highly questionable definition.

Evaluating Uses of Learning Technologies?

Ross Priory, Scotland.
The next presenters at ICE 3 are Michael Begg, Rachel Ellaway, David Dewhurst, and Hamish MacLeod. They describe themselves as educational informaticians, and note that the idea of learning design has been somewhat diluted by the ubiquity of online teaching spaces. Instead, this group focus on proximal development - experimentation with spaces which are in a constant state of development and often sit at something of a distance from the institutions around them.

The problem here is Web2.0: the variety of definitions which exist; and the lack of clarity about its standards. Why do institutions say they like it, yet do so little about it? Who is implementing it in an educational context, and who owns it? What is the origin of the claims that it is going to make things better? What makes us "us" and the institution "them" - and is Web2.0 for us or for them (or for the students)?

Digital Divide Narratives

Ross Priory, Scotland.
Up next here at ICE 3 are Debbie Holley and Martin Oliver. They begin by highlighting the notion of the digital divide, which appears to be based on a notion that media access is inherently a good thing: if the digital divide problem is solved by providing access for all, then society will be better off. This question of access is positioned as the basic issue, but is ultimately only a superficial one - behond this, there are also divides in relation to people's skills and literacies, to their levels of motivation to exercise their skills (they may have skills, but choose not to use tem), and further, there is a divide between what are seen as 'normal' high technology uses on the one hand, and disruptive effects of complex technologies on the other.

From Cyberspace to Cyborgs

Ross Priory, Scotland.
The last ICE 3 speaker before lunch is Andrew Ravenscroft. He begins by discussing some of the traditional conceptualisations of cyberspace, such as the descriptions in William Gibson's Neuromancer, which saw cyberspace as a distinct space which one would enter; The Matrix is perhaps the most prominent visualisation of this idea (and Andrew shows a very funny Muppet version of the Matrix trailer which can be found on YouTube).

Culture, Technology, and (Environments of) Learning

Ross Priory, Scotland.
The second day here at ICE 3 starts with a keynote by Gunther Kress. He begins by noting the brackets in his talk title, which for him symbolise the distinctions between some of the core and continuing aspects of learning, and the particular affordances of the learning environments in use at any one point. What stays the same, what changes, and why, then? Of course, we are embedded in cultures, and these do shift and change.

Generation CX?

Ross Priory, Scotland (apparently this is also where Rob Roy was written).
The last ICE 3 speaker for today is John Cook. He describes the cultural emergence of 'Generation CX' (rather than Gens C or X, presumably), but notes that even Generation X hasn't been particularly well (or uniformly) defined as yet. The term emerged first in 1964, and was famously revived by Douglas Coupland in the 1990s, now referring to those born between 1960 and 1965 and feeling no connection to the cultural icons of the baby boom generation. A yet later, grunge Generation X was defined by songs such as Nirvana's "Smells like Teen Spirit".


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