University of the Arts London (UAL) has led the field in open education & digital literacies activities & projects in arts subjects over the past eight years, mostly through external or part funded projects[i].
However awareness of open educational resources (OER), Open Educational Practice (OEP) and digital making remain under the radar, outside mainstream pedagogic practice.
Staff and students lack confidence, skills and awareness or can criticality engage and challenge practices such as self-archiving, online identities, online presence[ii], digital making and physical computing.
This paper aims to explore the widening gap between formal pedagogic practices (institutional) and the informal emergent digital domains and practices (Grassroots) within arts learning & teaching.
How do we reconcile these differences?
Chris will share the experiences and challenges of the digital learning, teaching and enhancement work at CCW (Camberwell, Chelsea, and Wimbledon Colleges of Arts) in the development of formal digital learning and teaching practices along side the emergent informal grassroots learning practices.
The CCW Digital MakerSpace[iii] is a growing informal, cross disciplinary community exploring and supporting emergent digital making practice through safe-fail experimentation with new & old materials and technologies. A MakeSpace community requires a rich variety of expertise, peer support, knowledge sharing, specialist equipment, tools and support. The CCW MakerSpace community aims to foster a collaborative approach across disciplines, HEIs, industry, projects, UAL Chairs, Enterprise and is open to explore all collaboration possibilities. The community at present includes staff, students & external collaborators who aim to openly share experience, knowledge and interest in experimentation with physical/interactive tech and traditional making practice.
The CCW Digital MakerSpace work provides a useful enabler[iv] for open practice and OER development and vice versa, physical and virtual interests and activities are brought together with new expanded learning and teaching communities and networks are created. The transition of grassroots activities into official institutional pedagogic practices is brought into question, how do institutions successfully support, develop and amplify autonomous grassroots practice without homogenisation?
Making sense of the current digital learning and teaching landscape is complicated. Chris will use an adapted version of the cynefin[v] sense-making framework to help illustrate and explore the different perspectives across the agile landscape of digital L&T at CCW colleges of arts. We move between the four domains of the Cynefin framework: Simple, Complicated, Complex and Novel as we situate and understand digital learning and teaching practice. As we move withing these domains we decide what action is appropriate to apply to the situation to move forwards: Categorise, Analyse, Probe or Stabalise.
The Cynefin framework helps us identify gaps in the agile landscape, but equally important it helps us appreciate and accept all the different domains of digital L&T practice that work well. The mapping process clearly highlights the imbalance between (safe/simple) curriculum dependent/institutionally led and supported TEL (technology enhanced learning) and grassroots (complicated/complex) influenced TEL.
[i] Exploring free & open education at University of the Arts London - http://process.arts.ac.uk/content/exploring-free-open-education-university-arts-london
[ii] Online Identities Projects UAL - http://process.arts.ac.uk/content/online-identities-projects-ual
[iii] The CCW Digital MakerSpace (http://process.arts.ac.uk/category/project-groups/ccw-digital-makerspace)
[iv] Understanding digital domains in arts learning & teaching - http://process.arts.ac.uk/content/understanding-digital-domains-arts-learning-teaching