Last week I visited UniDistance Suisse, as I took up an invitation from Henrietta Carbonel and Jean-Michel Jullien to share some of my work around digital learning spaces. Across two days I delivered a conference presentation, led a workshop, attended meetings and took part in an interview where I talked about learning spaces and the future of education more generally.
Within my conference presentation I discussed three teaching approaches where I have configured space, time and technology in response to specific design changes. The activities are an online exhibition, an asynchronous tutorial, and a conference poster session. Each of these approaches rethinks a conventional educational activity in ways that tap into the potentialities of the digital learning environment. They also all take place within the collaborative whiteboard space of Miro. As the slides below explain, I have been using these approaches within my Education and Digital Culture, Future of Learning Organisations and Learning Spaces and Digital Technologies postgraduate courses. Drawing on examples from my own practice meant that I was able to discuss the possibilities, but also the constraints and challenges, associated with each teaching activity.
My workshop took place within the physical classroom but also simultaneously in Miro. We took a crowd-sourcing approach to knowledge construction as we explored questions around multimodal assessment, classroom power dynamics, and fusion spaces and pedagogies. The structure for this session involved my introducing each theme, before making a provocation to stimulate conversation. Groups then responded through discussion, while at the same collecting their ideas within a shared Miro board. Asking groups to share their ideas in Miro allowed more time for discussion, compared to the typical workshop experience of cutting conversation short early in order to prepare and then deliver spoken presentations.
I was glad that each of these sessions seemed to strike a chord with colleagues, who were drawn together from a range of Swiss and French universities. It was interesting to see how the many of the same questions and experiences resonate across international borders and different universities. I am hopeful there might be more collaborations like this in the future.
I am a Lecturer in Digital Education (Education Futures), within the Centre for Research in Digital Education at The University of Edinburgh.