Twine Peaks. (Digital) Fire Walk With Me & Techno-Auto-Ethnography

I have no idea where this will lead us. But I have a definite feeling it will be a place both wonderful and strange”

(Dale Cooper, Twin Peaks).

The Association for Learning Technologists (ALT) organises the Open Education OER conference every year. In 2021, the event took place in an online capacity. In 2022, the event took place in a hybrid way in London and online with the Global OER Graduate Network (GO-GN) contributing to the chairing of the event. The aim of the conference is to explore “Open Education research, practice and policy” (Association for Learning Technology, 2022). The conference explored five core themes including pedagogy in a time of crisis, open textbooks, open in action, open research and wildcard proposals (Association for Learning Technologists, n.d.).

(Eclipse Digital Imaging, 2022)

Responding to the theme of pedagogy of crisis, one of the critical questions is “what does an ‘open’ response look like?” (Association for Learning Technologists, n.d.). For me, an open response is to explore what we can do with what we have. Necessity is the mother of (digital) invention.

Autoethnography is “a method that allows us to reconsider how we think, how we do research and maintain relationships, and how we live”

(Adams, Holman Jones & Ellis 2015: p8).

Creating a story/game in Twine can be visualised as map on a grid. It is possible to test to game.

Twine is a both free and open-source storytelling tool that enables users to create text-based interactive games and non-linear storytelling (Twinery, n.d.)

(Eclipse Digital Imaging, 2022)

Twine can be argued to bea new tool has emerged that empowers just about anyone to create a game” (Petit, 2013)

(Eclipse Digital Imaging, 2022)

Twin Peaks (1990-1991) explores “…. idiosyncratic FBI agent investigates the murder of a young woman in the even more idiosyncratic town of Twin Peaks” (IMDb, 2022). For online presentations, presenters were invited to use Discord to respond to ideas and answer questions which enhanced the conference experience.

(Eclipse Digital Imaging, 2022)

Drawing on the well known television programme Twin Peaks (1990-1991) the presentation draws on Twine to create a techno-auto-ethnographic “identity performance” game/story to explore the idiosyncratic identity story of a Learning Technologist working in higher education (Clark, 2020). Techno-auto- ethnography has been novel, innovative and open methodological thread running throughout research and practice (see blog posts exploring this topic here).

Bibliography

Adams, T, E, Holman, Jones, S & Ellis, C (2015) Autoethnography Understanding Qualitative Research (USA: OUP). 

Association for Learning Technology (2022) Open Education (OER) Conference (Online) Available at: https://www.alt.ac.uk/events/open-education-conference [Accessed 3 May 2022].

Association for Learning Technology (n.d.) Open Education Conference #OER22 (Online) Available at: https://altc.alt.ac.uk/oer22/ [Accessed 3 May 2022].

Clark D. (2020). Tech and me: an autoethnographic account of digital literacy as an identity performance. Research in Learning Technology28. https://doi.org/10.25304/rlt.v28.2389

Discord (2022) Discord (Online) Available at: https://discord.com/ [Accessed 3 May 2022].

Eclipse Digital Imaging (2022) Smart Phone with Transparent Screen (Online) Available at: https://www.presentermedia.com/powerpoint-clipart/smart-phone-transparent-screen-pid-15851 [Accessed 3 May 2022].

Eclipse Digital Imaging (2022) Computer Monitor Blank White Screen (Online) Available at: https://www.presentermedia.com/powerpoint-clipart/computer-monitor-plain-white-screen-pid-2081 [Accessed 3 May 2022].

Eclipse Digital Imaging (2022) 8-bit Message Text (Online) Available at: https://www.presentermedia.com/video-background/8bit-message-text-pid-12118 [Accessed 3 May 2022].

Eclipse Digital Imaging (2022) 80s Retro Text Custom (Online) Available at: https://www.presentermedia.com/video-background/80s-retro-text-custom-pid-19907 [Accessed 3 May 2022].

Eclipse Digital Imaging (2022) Store Front (Online) Available at: https://www.presentermedia.com/powerpoint-clipart/store-front-pid-19128 [Accessed 3 May 2022].

Global OER Graduate Network (GO-GN) (n.d.) Global OER Graduate Network (GO-GN) (Online) Available at: https://go-gn.net/ [Accessed 3 May 2022].

Petit, C (2013) Power to the People: The Text Adventures of Twine. Gamespot, [online] (Last updated 2:11AM PST on 21 January). Available at: https://www.gamespot.com/articles/power-to-the-people-the-text-adventures-of-twine/1100-6402665/ [Accessed 3 May 2022].

Twinery (n.d) Twine is an open-source tool for telling interactive, nonlinear stories (Online) Available at: https://twinery.org/ [Accessed 3 May 2022].

No rest for the Wicked. Exploring Wicked Problems & Digital Elephant in the (Zoom) Room

The British Association for International & Comparative Education (BAICE) Early Career conference took place in an online capacity on Zoom in April 2022 over two days. The theme of the conference was explored potential and challenges in education in today’s world (BAICE, 2022). The organisation is affiliated to the World Council of Comparative Education Societies (WCCES) (BAICE, 2022).

“(BAICE) is an association which promotes research, teaching, policy and development in all aspects of international and comparative education. BAICE is the British affiliate of the World Council of Comparative Education Societies (WCCES)”

The British Association for International & Comparative Education (BAICE) (2022)

What is a wicked problem?

“A wicked problem can be defined “…as a complex issue that defies complete definition, for which there is no final solution, since any resolution generates further issues, and where solutions are not true or false or good or bad, but the best that can be done at the time”

(Rittel & Webber, 1973 in Brown, Harris & Russell, 2010: p4).
Wicked Problems & Solutions

It could be argued that the transnational online pivot is an example of a wicked problem. It has been acknowledged that the pivot “…exposed international students to many new study options. These include:

  • flexible online access to classes and learning materials from anywhere
  • multi-modality in creating diverse content and in student assignments
  • multiple platforms and communication channels for diversified feedback and dialogue
  • captions for recorded videos through tech platforms such as Zoom” (Adachi & Tran, 2022).

Furthermore, another example of a wicked problem could be student engagement. As educators, we are always trying to create a range of ways to ensure all students are engagement during learning sessions. However, every solution has a series of challenges to overcome. One solution can lead to further problems and questions. Theoretically, the wicked problem idea provides a way to think about complexity in a simple way.

What wicked problems did we encounter in the technology -enhanced transnational learning (TETL) context?

A recent blog post in the Association for Learning Technologists OER Guest Post explored how international postgraduate students’ make connections using “Zoom University” (Lei, 2022). It is useful to ask what wicked problems are other institutions facing for example working across time zones (Lei, 2022). With regard to the technology enhanced transnational learning (TETL) From this, we are in a position to ask how are other institutions solving wicked problems?

“In addition, although universities were making a huge effort of making online communities through Teams, Moodle and other platforms, it is hard to make a real in-depth and ongoing conversation, the groups were always very quiet”

(lei, 2022)

What next? Wicked futures?

Let’s consider the future, who decides what the problems are and who decides on the solutions? Problems and solutions don’t have to be mutually exclusive. Are students part of this process? 

A helpful bog post was in the Post Pandemic University blog by Mittelmeier, Lomer, Lim, Cockayne, & Ploner in 2022 that asks “How can practices with International Students be made more ethical?”. Perhaps we need to recognise that “All international students need more help to adjust to university” (Moores, 2022).Prioritising an ethical approach is critical for example to overcome the tendency towards deficit narratives of international students (Mittelmeier, Lomer, Lim, Cockayne, & Ploner, 2022). The future publication entitled Research with International Students: Critical Conceptual and Methodological Considerations will be important in virtue of the fact that there is “…limited conceptual and methodological guidance specifically for researchers (rather than teachers) who conduct their work with and about international students” (Castiello, 2022). The Critical Internationalization Studies Network could play a fundamental role in this inquiry. Does higher education have a “Language Problem?”.

“To better understand the Language Problem, we must first understand how today’s university activity is increasingly tied to a worldwide knowledge economy in a global marketplace which is dependent, in large part, on proficiency in English”

(Bhatt, Badwan & Madiba, 2022: p425)

Empathy can form a big part of this ethical picture. In future, I hope to explore possible articulations of what empathy looks like in technology-enhanced contexts as part if a project led by by Dr. Lee Campbell from the University of the Arts London (UAL) in April 2022. Furthermore, an open source tool called Twine will be used to explore a techno-auto-ethnographic story which will be presented at the Open Education Resources (OER) Conference 2022, Association for Learning Technology (ALT) in April 2022. Making online tools as open as possible is a radical example and a wicked solution. “International students are back on campus, but does that spell the end of digital learning?…” (Adachi & Tran, 2022)

Perhaps the key to engaing learners is to enocurage to develop an “online learner identity” (Garip, 2020).

“A sense of identity allows you to establish yourself as an online learner when approaching prioritisation of tasks and managing time with work and family commitments”

(garip, 2020)

Perhaps a wicked solution could be to explore transnational research, for example by exploring the new book Introduction to Quantitative Analysis for International Educators (Whatley, 2022). Do staff and student prefer face-to-face teaching and learning? Is this a wicked question?

“Students Often Prefer In-Person Classes . . . Until They Don’t”

(Samson, 2022).

Wicked problems can be a useful way to understand and make sense of the complexity what is happening to us and to frame the range of uncertainties and changes to learning identities and relationships. It is useful method to avoid over-problematising. It requires us to be radically vulnerable, open and collaborative in novel and creative and interdisciplinary ways. Here’s to a wicked and interesting future! 

Bibliography

Adachi, C & Tran, L (2022) International students are back on campus, but does that spell the end of digital learning? Here’s why it shouldn’t. The Conversation, [online] Last updated 6.09am on 04th March 2022 6.09am). Available at: https://theconversation-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/theconversation.com/amp/international-students-are-back-on-campus-but-does-that-spell-the-end-of-digital-learning-heres-why-it-shouldnt-177545 [Accessed 8 April 2022]

Association for Learning Technology (ALT) (n.d.) Open Education (OER) Conference (Online) Available at: https://www.alt.ac.uk/events/open-education-conference [Accessed 6 April 2022]

Bhatt, Badwan & Madiba (2022) Critical perspectives on teaching in the multilingual university, Teaching in Higher Education, 27:4, 425-436, DOI:
10.1080/13562517.2022.2058295

British Association for International & Comparative Education (BAICE) (2022) BAICE 2022 Early Career Conference – Call For Papers (Online) Available at: https://baice.ac.uk/baice-2022-early-career-conference-call-for-papers/ [Accessed: 6 April 2022]

British Association for International & Comparative Education (BAICE) (2022) BAICE News (Online) Available at: https://baice.ac.uk/ [Accessed: 6 April 2022]

Brown, V, A, Deane, P, M, Harris, J, A & Russell, J, Y. 2010. Towards a Just and Sustainable Future. In: Brown, V, A, Harris, J, A, & Russell, J, Y. eds. Tackling Wicked Problems: Through the Transdisciplinary Imagination. Oxon: Routledge 2010. Ch. 1.​

Castiello, S (2022) Research with international students: Reflecting on critical and conceptual methodological considerations. https://criticalinternationalization.net/. International Education blog [blog] 19 April. Available at: https://criticalinternationalization.net/2022/04/19/research-with-international-students-reflecting-on-critical-and-conceptual-methodological-considerations/ [Accessed 3 May 2022]

Garip, G (2020) How to encourage self-regulated online learning. https://www.derby.ac.uk. Education Blog [blog]. (Online) Available at: https://www.derby.ac.uk/blog/students-educators-online-learning/ [Accessed 19th April 2022]

Lei, Y (2022) OER Guest Post: How did international postgraduate students’ make connections with others when they were attending Zoom University in their own country. https://altc.alt.ac.uk/. Learning Technology Blog [blog] 21 March. Available at: https://altc.alt.ac.uk/blog/2022/03/guest-post-makingconnectionsviazoom/ [Accessed 29 March 2022]

Mittelmeier, J, Lomer, S, Lim, M, Cockayne, H & Ploner, J (2022) How can practices with International Students be made more ethical? https://postpandemicuniversity.net Post Pandemic University blog [blog] 10 Jan Available at: https://postpandemicuniversity.net/2022/01/10/how-can-practices-with-international-students-be-made-more-ethical/ [Accessed: 6 April 2022]

McDonald, P (2022) Joseph & the Techno-Empathic Dreamcoat. Exploring Dimensions of Techno-Empathy. Any (Empathy) Dream Will Do. Digitalrau.wordpress.com. Digital Transformation Blog [blog] 25 April. Available at: https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2022/04/25/joseph-the-techno-empathic-dreamcoat-exploring-dimensions-of-techno-empathy-any-empathy-dream-will-do/ [Accessed: 24 April 2022] 

Moores, P (2022) All international students need more help to adjust to university [online] (Last updated 14 May March 2022) Available at: https://www.timeshighereducation.com/blog/all-international-students-need-more-help-adjust-university [Accessed 19th April 2022]

Samson, P (2022) Students Often Prefer In-Person Classes . . . Until They Don’t. Educause, [online] (Last updated 01 March 2022) Available at: https://er.educause.edu/articles/2022/3/students-often-prefer-in-person-classes-until-they-dont [Accessed 19th April 2022]

The Critical Internationalization Studies Network (n.d.) The Critical Internationalization Studies Network (Online) Available at: https://criticalinternationalization.net/ [Accessed 3 May 2022]

Twinery (n.d.) (Online) Available at: https://twinery.org/ [Accessed 6 April 2022]

Whatley, M (2022) Introduction to Quantitative Analysis for International Educators (Switzerland: Springer)

From Pecha Kucha to Poetic Kucha. Exploring the Possibilities of Techno-Poetics.

The Women in Academia Support Network (WIASN) is:

“An international, intersectional , safe space for women academics of all stages. Sharing, empowering, changing the system”

(Women in Academia Support Network WIASN, 2022)

In March 2022,, the Virtually Undisciplined: Diversifying Higher Education and Research bi-annual conference took place on Zoom over two days. Drawing on the pandemic and subsequent online pivot as the context for the conference, a pecha kucha inspired presentation was delivered exploring a techno-auto-ethnographic creative approach.

(@wiasnofficial, 2022)

“WIASN assert that global issues can only be properly addressed by a diverse and interconnected research culture.  So how can a more interconnected (globally, digitally, interdisciplinary) research and academic community foster ways in which we value, embrace and leverage diversity (which includes the unconventional)? This conference asks what are the potential and pitfalls to achieving this”

(WIASN , 2022)
‘I, Learning Technologist’

A wide range of topics were discussed from online fanfiction, creative research methods and the autoethnography of failure and success.

The #creativeHE open mic event was shared with the group. WIASN are also thinking about creating an open mic opportunity too. It is possible to sign up here. The idea of a comedy evening was also discussed.

(@wiasnofficial, 2022)

The idea of celebrating the telling non-linear stories was discussed and how the techno-auto-ethnographic approach can be a platform to cope with ‘messy’ stories. A short presentation can be a challenge to convey the main points in a short period of time, so the popular structure of ‘how is started, how it is going‘ was used as a way to structure the presentation to engage the audience. What next? Petcha-gogy? From “The Poetics of Space” to the ‘Techno-Poetics of Space‘ (Bachelard, 1958).

Bibliography

Bachelard, G (1958) The Poetics of Space (New York: Penguin).

#creativeHE (2022) Getting Our Creative Act Together. The #creative HE Open Mic. https://creativehecommunity.wordpress.com. Creative Higher Education blog [blog]. Feb 14. Available at: https://creativehecommunity.wordpress.com/2022/02/14/getting-our-creative-act-together-the-creative-he-open-mic/

McDonald, P (2022) #CreativeHE Open Mic Sign Up (Online) Available at: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1FOjyRCXXyrOFohedn2bzAvusdchHIu5kgWQpZ_T5HEg/ [Accessed 1 April 2022]

Women in Academia Support Network (WIASN) (2022) Women in Academia Support Network (Online) Available at: https://www.wiasn.com/ [Accessed 1 April 2022]

Women in Academia Support Network (WIASN) (2022) Virtually Undisciplined: Diversifying Higher Education and Research through interconnectivity (Online) Available at: https://www.wiasn.com/conference-call/ [Accessed 1 April 2022]

Women in Academia Support Network (WIASN) [@wiasnoffical] (2022, 1st April) PIP MCDONALD PERFORMED AN AWESOME TECHNO POEM IN THE PREVIOUS CONFEENCE SESSION & HAS SHARED THIS LINK TO A CREATIVE HE OPEN IC. IF WE DON’T DO A WIASN ONE I WILL BE BITTERLY DISAPPOINTED. CREATIVE HIGHER EDCUATION OPEN MIC SUGN UP – BIT.LY/3LVT5HW #WIASN2022 [Tweet]. Twitter. Available at: https://twitter.com/wiasnofficial/status/1509914245315637256?cxt=HHwWkMC5lbPApfQpAAAA

Women in Academia Support Network (WIASN) [@wiasnoffical] (2022, 1st April) THE POSSIBILITIES OF TECHNO-POETICS WITH PIP MCDONALD, FROM @ROYALAGUNI TALKING ON HOW YOU CAN UNDERSTAND YOURSELF AND OTHERS MORE THROUGH THE TECHNO-AUTOETHNOGRAPHIC APPROACH AND NON-LINEARITY. ALLOWS TO TELL THE MESS STORIES OF TE SELF [Tweet]. Twitter. Available at: https://twitter.com/wiasnofficial/status/1509911484960280590?cxt=HHwWnMC49dyfpPQpAAAA

“One small BETT for Learning Technology Kind”.

BETT UK took place between 23th-25th March 2022 at ExCeL arena London. I participated in an invited roundtable event in the Collaboration space entitled ‘Riding the wave: Proving high quality education across borders’ with Universities UK. Participants were invited to read through a report before we took part in the discussion:

This report content is a summary of the key ideas from the work of the Task & Finish Group on Transnational Online Higher Education from the Universities UK International’s (UUKi) TNE Advisory Group (Universities UK, 2021: p3).

BETT can be understood as “The global community for education technology. Our events in the UK, Brasil and Asia are where we bring our community together to spark ideas, create connections and accelerate trade”

(HYve, 2021)

Technology enhanced transnational learning (TETL) can be understood as a unique area of specialism. Participants were divided into three tables with a specific theme to discuss. The theme on our table was ‘access’. We discussed access to and perceptions of student experience, access and accessibility, barriers to support across time zones, and reimagining an experience as opposed to just replicating an established model. It was a privilege to take part in the roundtable discussion exploring this topic. It feels important to prioritise an ethical practice for international students (Mittelmeier, Lomer, Cockayne & Ploner, 2022)

At the Zoom stand, there was an opportunity to explore how the new Zoom Rooms could work in a learning context and the opportunity to own a pair of Zoom socks! Highlights of the BETT can be viewed in this YouTube video.

Bibliography

Ahead by BETT (2022) Ahead by Bett 2022 Highlights. Available at: https://youtu.be/-DufUye5kG8 [Accessed 19 April 2022]

Defra, 2007. Sustainable development: the bigger picture. Available at: <http://youtu.be/keZmg56ahdM&gt; [Accessed 23 June 2012].

BETT (n.d.) Welcome to BETT (Online) Available at: https://www.bettshow.com/ [Accessed: 27 March 2022]

Mittelmeier, J, Lomer, S, Lim, M, Cockayne, H & Ploner, J (2022) How can practices with International Students be made more ethical? https://postpandemicuniversity.net Post Pandemic University blog [blog] 10 Jan Available at: https://postpandemicuniversity.net/2022/01/10/how-can-practices-with-international-students-be-made-more-ethical/ [Accessed: 27 March 2022]

Universities UK (2021) Building the global reputation and delivery of UK transnational online higher education. [pdf] Universities UK. Available at: https://www.universitiesuk.ac.uk/sites/default/files/uploads/UUKi%20reports/TNE-task-and-finish-report.pdf [Accessed: 27 March 2022]

“Staying with the Blog Trouble”. Diffractive Blogging & Wicked Problems

The PressEd conference is an annual online event that takes place on Twitter exploring  education, pedagogy and research using WordPress (PressEd, n.d.). Contributors have 15 minutes, up to 15 tweets to share their ideas and use the #PressEDConf22 hashtag. Why is PressEd relevant? The Royal Agricultural University (RAU) Digital Transformation blog was created using WordPress. For the past four years, contributions have been made to this conference.

YearPressEd Conference ContributionTweet Archive/Twitter Moment Link/Blog Post
2019Me, Myself and Multimodality: Exploring Multimodal Opportunities (MLOs) on WordPresshttps://twitter.com/i/events/1118963497638006785
2020Close Encounters of the Accessible Kind: Exploring digital accessibility on WordPresshttps://twitter.com/i/events/1246036275905339392
2021Now That’s What I Call WordPress. Exploring WordPress for Radio – Enhanced Learning Opportunities (RELO)https://2021.pressedconf.org/?easyconfpr=now-thats-what-i-call-wordpress-exploring-wordpress-for-radio-enhanced-learning-opportunities-relo  

https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/03/25/unpacking-the-pressed-twitter-conference-experience-a-digital-assemblage/
2022The Possibilities of Diffractive Blogging. Exploring Wicked Problems with WordPresshttps://2022.pressedconf.org/?easyconfpr=the-possibilities-of-diffractive-blogging-exploring-wicked-problems-with-wordpress
Table of PressEd contributions

I discovered the idea of diffractive reading from Barad (2007). What can physics tell us about ourselves and our meaning-making practices?

“Diffraction is a physical phenomenon that lies at the center of some key discussions in physics and the philosophy of physics… Diffraction is also an apt metaphor for describing the methodological approach that I use of reading insights through one another in attending to and responding to the details and specificities of relations of difference and how they matter”

(Barad, 2007: p1)

What could diffractive blogging be? What do we do when we blog? Do we make ‘waves’ or ‘worlds’ or both? Blogging IS an act of “… World(ing)…” (Thiele & Kaiser, 2018: p2). Perhaps it could be argued that the opportunity to blog is an opportunity to ‘stay with the trouble’ and to make sense of the trouble in a collaborative capacity. Trouble can be an opportunity.

“Trouble is an interesting word. It derives from thirteenth-century French verb meaning “to stir up,” “to disturb”. We -all of us on Terra-live in disturbing times, mixed-up times, troubling and turbid times. The task is to become capable…The task is to make kin in lines of inventive connection as a practice of learning…”

(HARAWAY, 2016)

A wicked problem can be defined:

“…as a complex issue that defies complete definition, for which there is no final solution, since any resolution generates further issues, and where solutions are not true or false or good or bad, but the best that can be done at the time”

(Rittel & Webber, 1973 in Brown, Harris & Russell, 2010: p4).

From a pedagogical perspective, perhaps engagement could be considered as a ‘wicked problem’ in virtue of the fact that not all students in a class can engage in the same way at any one time. There is no such thing as a ‘perfect lesson’. The persistence of imperfection needs to be acknowledged. In January 2021, polling was explored as a way to improve student engagement and the outcomes were presented at the EdTech Winter conference and in a blog post here. Perhaps digital literacy for both staff and students can also be regarded as a wicked problem. Zoom literacy for students was explored using an escape room presented at the Collaborative Action Research Network (CARN) CARNival Raised Voices 2021 Conference and a blog post here.

Tweetchats and conferences that take place on Twitter can be argued to be inclusive, accessible, and fun. A blog post was created exploring #ukfechat (@ukfechat) which is weekly tweetchat.

A visual summary of the tweets can be accessed below:

Bibliography

Barad, (2007) Meeting the Universe Halfway: Quantum Physics and the Entanglement of Matter and Meaning (Durham & London: Duke University Press)

Brown, V, A, Harris, J & Brown & Russell, J, Y (eds) (2010) Tackling Wicked Problems: Through the Transdisciplinary Imagination Kindle Edition (London & New York: Earthscan)

Collaborative Action Research Network (CARN) (n.d.) CARNival – Raised Voices: Collaborative Action Research Network (CARN) Online Conference, 2021 (Online) Available at: https://www.conventiondundeeandangus.co.uk/attending/conferences/carnival–raised-voices-collaborative-action-research-network-carn-online-conference-2021 [Accessed: 27 March 2021]

Kaiser, B, M & Thiele, K (eds) (2017) Diffracted Worlds – Diffractive Readings: Onto-Epistemologies and the Critical Humanities (London & New York: Routledge)

Haraway, D (2016) Staying with the Trouble (Experimental Futures): Making Kin in the Chthulucene (Durham & London: Duke University Press)

Irish Learning Technology Association (ILTA) EdTech Winter Online Conference 2021 (Online) Available at: https://ilta.ie/project/edtechwinter2021/ [Accessed: 27 March 2021]

McDonald, P (2021) Unpacking the PressEd Twitter Conference Experience. A Digital Assemblage? Digitalrau.wordpress.com Digital Transformation Blog [blog] 25 March. Available at:  https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/03/25/unpacking-the-pressed-twitter-conference-experience-a-digital-assemblage/ [Accessed: 24 January 2022] 

McDonald, P (2021) EduTwitter as Rhizome. An Online Athenaeum? Tweeting on the Shoulders of (Digital) Giants. Digitalrau.wordpress.com. Digital Transformation Blog [blog] 29 April. Available at:  https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/04/29/edutwitter-as-rhizome-an-online-athenaeum-tweeting-on-the-shoulders-of-digital-giants/ [Accessed: 27 March 2022]

McDonald, P (2021) Technology to Transgress. Spinoza, Energy & Expeditions of Joy. Exploring Critical Zoom Literacies with #ukfechat Digitalrau.wordpress.com. Digital Transformation Blog [blog] 5 October. Available at: https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/10/05/technology-to-transgress-spinoza-energy-expeditions-of-joy-exploring-critical-zoom-literacies-with-ukfechat/ [Accessed: 27 March 2022]

McDonald, P (2021) Indiana Jones & the Breakout Tombs. Exploring Student Zoom Literacy. Digitalrau.wordpress.com Digital Transformation Blog [blog] 9 October. Available at: https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/10/09/indiana-jones-the-breakout-tombs-exploring-student-zoom-literacy [Accessed: 27 March 2022]

McDonald, P (2021) Digital Winter is Coming. Exploring the Brave New Digital Worlds at the EdTech Winter Conference 2021. A Reflective Audio Comic. Digitalrau.wordpress.com Digital Transformation Blog [blog] 14th January.  Available at:  https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/01/14/the-digital-winter-is-coming-exploring-the-brave-new-digital-worlds-at-the-edtech-winter-conference-2021-a-reflective-audio-comic/ [Accessed: 27 March 2022]

PressEd (n.d.) The Possibilities of Diffractive Blogging. Exploring Wicked Problems with WordPress. https://2022.pressedconf.org/. WordPress Education Conference Blog [blog] n.d. Available at: https://2022.pressedconf.org/?easyconfpr=the-possibilities-of-diffractive-blogging-exploring-wicked-problems-with-wordpress [Accessed: 27 March 2022]

PressEd (n.d.) The 2022 PressEd conference. https://2022.pressedconf.org/. WordPress Education blog [blog] n.d. Available at: https://2022.pressedconf.org/ [Accessed: 27 March 2022]

PressEd (n.d.) Now That’s What I Call WordPress! Exploring WordPress for Radio enhanced learning Opportunities (RELO). https://2022.pressedconf.org/. WordPress Education Conference Blog [blog] n.d. Available at: ps://2021.pressedconf.org/?easyconfpr=now-thats-what-i-call-wordpress-exploring-wordpress-for-radio-enhanced-learning-opportunities-relo [Accessed: 27 March 2022]

Pip McDonald [@PhilippaMcDona3]. (2020, April 3). PressEdConf20-@PhilippaMcDona3 Close Encounter of the Accessible Kind [Twitter moment]. Retrieved from https://twitter.com/i/events/1246036275905339392

Pip McDonald [@PipMac6]. (2021, April 18). PressEdConf20- #PressEdConf19 Me, Myself and Multimodality [Twitter moment]. Retrieved from https://twitter.com/i/events/1118963497638006785

What the Techno-Auto-Ethnographer Did Next. The #EdTechOutlaws Adventures

The #EdTechOutlaws is a group for educators with an interest in working in the arts. It was founded by Puiyin Wong (@Puiyin) Learning Technologist at the Royal College of Art (RCA) in 2021. Online meetings take place every month or so and one participant is invited to set a theme for the discussion for example reflecting on hybrid and hyflex approaches. I was invited to create a theme for the meeting in March. I decided to introduce the techno-auto-ethnographic approach to the group. This involved sharing how the approach was created outlined in earlier blog posts (here, here and research poster here), providing an example of a techno-auto-ethnographic response, a template with some prompts, a brief discussion of the benefits and drawbacks and finally a space to experiment with the approach to to tell their own stories of how they became Learning Technologists.

The structure of the techno-auto-ethnographic themed meeting

It is always fascinating to find out how people became Learning Technologists, the varied routes into this unique profession and the different ways that institutions frame the role. An example was provided in the form of a ‘techno-auto-ethnographic’ tweet whereby a participant had reflected on being a teacher before a Learning Technologist. On reflection, having been a teacher before helped me understand how to support teachers as much as possible. Perhaps techno-auto-ethnographic moments are more common than we think.

A Techno-auto-ethnographic Tweet? (@johnbrindletel, 2022)

An example was provided of a poem I had created as a techno-auto-ethnographic response which was published in the #creativeHE annual exploring being creative in the face of adversity called ‘I’m a Learning Technologist. Get Me Out of Here’. A techno-autoethnographic poem’. Participants shared their techno-auto-ethnographic stories then nominated the next participant to go next.

Throughout the storytelling, I wrote a live techno-poetic response to amalgamate key words and phrases form the stories of participants to create a poem performed at the end of the meeting.

‘How it started & How it is Going’ – Exploring a techno-auto-ethnographic template

It was a privilege to hear the stories of participants and acknowledge the range of pathways into learning technology. There are so many types of Learning Technologist and job role names from Academic Developer to Learning Designer. Perhaps there are a wide range “identity tensions” with the learning technology field and the collaborative techno-auto-ethnographic approach is a constructive way to explore them (Yazan, Herrera & Rashed, 2022). The collaborative techno-auto-ethnographic experiment made me reflect on the future of learning technology profession.

(@puiyin, 2022)

Participants were also encouraged to take part in the #creativeHE Open Mic event on Thursday 21st April 6pm-7pm which is also World Creativity Day. It is possible to sign up here. I hope this will be an inclusive event to celebrate original work. The event will also form part of an Action Learning Project (ALP) for the Collaborative Inquiry by Lifewide based on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and will contribute to drawing on UNESCO Futures of Education initiative. The first meeting took place in March 2022.

Each Action Learning Project (ALP) is shared to a LinkedIn group and is an opportunity to explore how projects can:

1. “contribute[s] to a healthier, more sustainable, regenerative future, culture and/or environment in respect of any of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals

2. utilise[s] individuals’ imaginations and draw on their creativity

3. contribute[s] to individuals’ health and wellbeing” (Lifewide Learning, n.d.).

It feel important to keep asking ourselves critical questions about pedagogy and technology. Part of this could be to move “…Beyond the Pedagogy—Technology Dichotomy” and celebrate the messy “entangled pedagogy” (Fawns, 2022). In future, the techno-auto-ethnographic approach will be discussed in the Women in Academia Support Network (WIASN) Virtually Undisciplined: Diversifying Higher Education and Research Conference exploring The Possibilities of Techno-Poetics in March 2022. It will also be explored at the Open Education Resources (OER) Conference 2022 organised by the Association for Learning Technology (ALT) where the open source tool Twine will be used to explore performing a techno-auto-ethnographic storytelling experiment in April 2022. Finally, the approach will be explored in the context of a project exploring empathy curated by led by Dr. Lee Campbell (@leejjcampbell) from the University of the Arts London (UAL) in April 2022.

Bibliography

Brindle, J [@johnbrindletel] (2022, 17th March) CURIOUS, HAVE ANY OF MY TWITTER PALS TRANSITIONED FROM BEING A SCHOOL TEACHER TO LEARNING TECHNOLOGIST/EDUCATIONAL DEVELOPER IN HE? I KMOW HOW I DID IT BUT CURIOUS ABOUT OTHERS, ARE THERE RESOURCES ON CAREER PATHWAYS? @A_L_T #altc [Tweet]. Twitter. Available at: https://twitter.com/johnbrindletel/status/1504544903551934469

Fawns, T (2022) An Entangled Pedagogy: Looking Beyond the Pedagogy—Technology Dichotomy. Postdigit Sci Educ [e-journal]. (Online) Available at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s42438-022-00302-7 [Accessed: 8 April 2022]

Lifewide Learning (n.d.) Action Learning Collaborative Inquiry Spring 2022 (Online) Available at: https://www.lifewideeducation.uk/healthy-futures.html [Accessed: 24 March 2022]

Leschallas, W & McDonald, P (2021) Exploring the impact of Techno-biography on the development of Digital Literacy in UNESCO Inclusive Policy Lab Education and Digital Skills: A Conversation Event in December 2021 [Online Poster]. [Date accessed: 19 March 2022] Available at: https://ordo.open.ac.uk/articles/poster/Exploring_the_impact_of_Techno-biography_on_the_development_of_Digital_Literacy/17212457?backTo=/collections/UNESCO_Inclusive_Policy_Lab_Education_and_Digital_Skills_A_Conversation_Event_8_December_2021_Collection/5752247 %5BAccessed: 24 March 2022]

Leschallas, W & McDonald, P (2021) Techno-autobiography & the Transnational Online Pivot: Exploring a Lecturer’s Experience of Teaching Online. Digitalrau.wordpress.com Digital Transformation Blog [blog] 12 January. Available at: https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/01/12/techno-autobiography-the-transnational-online-pivot-exploring-a-lecturers-experience-of-teaching-online/ [Accessed: 24 March 2022]

McDonald, P (2022) The #creativeHE Open Mic Event – Action Learning Project (ALP)(Online) Available at: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1n3A6vuwdiBkmZZ2oDAYqxerd5p_zTQL-ZaI3kTPsdM4/edit [Accessed: 24 March 2022]

McDonald, P (2022) #creativeHE Open Mic Sign Up Sheet (Online) Available at: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1FOjyRCXXyrOFohedn2bzAvusdchHIu5kgWQpZ_T5HEg/edit [Accessed: 24 March 2022]

McDonald, P (2021) ‘I’m a Learning Technologist. Get Me Out of Here’. A techno-autoethnographic poem’ in Tasler, N., O’Brien, R, E. & Spiers, A. (eds.) (2021) Being creative in the face of adversity. The #creativeHE Annual 2021. Creativity for Learning in Higher Education Community, #creativeHE, pp37-44, DOI: https://doi.org/10.25416/NTR.17709860.v1 [Accessed: 24 March 2022]

McDonald, P (2021) A Little More (Digital) Conversation and (Inclusive) Action Please’. New E-Learning Ecologies? From Techno-autobiography to Techno-autoethnography. Digitalrau.wordpress.com. Digital Transformation Blog [blog] 8 December. Available at: https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/12/08/a-little-more-digital-conversation-and-inclusive-action-please-new-e-learning-ecologies-from-techno-autobiography-to-techno-autoethnography/ %5BAccessed: 24 March 2022]

Presenter Media (n.d) Idea Think Tank (Online) Available at: https://www.presentermedia.com/powerpoint-template/think-tank-idea-pid-17181 [Accessed: 24 March 2022]

Wong, P [@puiyin] (2022, 21st March) JUST REALISED IT’S #WORLDPOETRYDAY2022, WHAT A HAPPY COINCIDENCE @PIPMAC6 WROTE A BEAUTIFUL POEM FOR THE #EDTECHOUTLAWS TODAY! @THISAESHAW @JOHNBRINDLETEL @TEACHNOLOGYJULI @WARWICKLANGUAGE @DEBJARNOLD @SOPH_HOL @2STANDANDSTARE @LEARNARDHOUX#@ELEARNINGTECHIE [Tweet]. Twitter. Available at: https://twitter.com/Puiyin/status/1506027877669736458

UNESCO (2019) Futures of Education A New Social Contract (Online) Available at: https://en.unesco.org/futuresofeducation/ [Accessed: 24 March 2022]

Yazan, B, Herrera, L, J, P & Rashed, D (2022) Transnational TESOL Practitioners’ Identity Tensions: A Collaborative Autoethnography [pdf] TESOL Quarterly. Available at: https://luisjpenton.files.wordpress.com/2022/03/yazan-et-al.-2022.pdf [Accessed: 18 March 2022]

‘My Research is like Digital Potato’. Exploring Technology-enhanced Transnational Learning (TETL) through the Plateau.

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Rhizomatic Research

The Royal Agricultural University (RAU) hosts a series of online research seminars. Each seminar is an opportunity for two volunteers who can either be a staff member or a student to talk for approximately 15 minutes each about their research projects with 10 minutes for questions. Sessions are recorded, edited using Panopto and are made available on Gateway.

On Wednesday 26th January 2022, I presented on the topic of technology- enhanced Transnational Learning (TETL). The overarching theme of the seminar explored technology. David Mian and Lisa van Dijk presented first epxloring the use of online collaboration tools inlcuding Miro, Mural, Klaxoon, Wonder and Mentimeter. Professor Louise Manning shared a link to an article she had contributed to exploring the ethical implications of collaboration within the food sector in a digital capacity (Jacobs, Brewer, Craigon, Frey, Gutierrez, Kanza, Manning, Munday, Pearson & Sacks, 2021).

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Exploring online collaboration tools

The structure of the presentation I delivered used the idea of chapters or ‘plateau’ (Deleuze & Guattari, 1987). Brent Adkins in his book and critical introduction to Deleuze and Guattari asks “ How is it possible to create something new?” (Adkins, 2015: p22). When we carry out research, perhaps it is imperative to be commitment to creating new and original contributions to knowledge. In the presentation, I suggested that it is important to acknowledge that online learning has never been new. Distance learning has never been new. Transnational learning has never been new. So what’s new then?

the first chapter or plateau, Deleuze and Guatarri introduce the idea of rhizome:

“Rhizomes do not propagate by way of clearly delineated hierarchies but by underground stems in which any part may send additional shoots upward, downward, or laterally. There is no hierarchy…beginning or end”.

(Adkins, 2015: p23)

Perhaps, the technology-enhanced transnational learning (TETL) research journey emulated the rhizomatic trajectory, particularly as each episode, chapter or component could be understood in itself or in relation to another part:

“each plateau can be read starting anywhere and can be related to any other plateau”

(Deleuze & guattari: p22 in adkins 2015: p23)

An example of a rhizome is a potato.

“All that is required to grow potatoes is burying the discarded skin of a potato. They simply begin again wherever they are”

(adkins, p15: p23)

Brent Adkins asks “ How is it possible to create something new?” (Adkins, 2015: p22). This is a critical question. My perception of research is that there is an imperative that there is a component of originality. But, truthfully, it is important to acknowledge that online learning has never been new. Distance learning has never been new. Transnational learning has never been new. So what’s new then?

Deleuze and Guatarri explore the notion of the assemblage. Assemblage can be understood asa group things. As opposed to fiiting “…into pre-existing forms” the assemblage provides us with the oportunity to create new ideas (Adkins, 2015: p22). Could Zoom be understood as an digital assemblage?

y”As an assemblage, a book has only itself, in connection with other assemblages and in relation to other bodies without organs”

(deleuze & guattari, 1987: p4)
(Not yet) A Thousand Research (Plateau) Projects

Being part of this technology-enhanced transnational learning (TETL) research journey was an oppertunity to reflect on what “digital scholarship” might mean in the future (Weller, 2011). Perhaps technology-enhanced transnational futures are part of what the “…promise of the University” might be (Mahon, 2022).

In the presentation, I briefly made reference to the idea of technology to transgress drawing on bell hook’s famous book Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom (hooks, 1994)

“The classroom remains the most radical space of possibility in the academy”

(Hooks, 1994)

The recording of the presentations can be accessed here (for RAU staff, login to Panopto via Gateway).

Exploring TNE

For more information about the research seminars, please contact the RAU Knowledge Exchange Team:

NameJob RoleEmail Address
Rebecca Atterbury-ThomasKnowledge Exchange Events Coordinatorrebecca.atterbury-thomas@rau.ac.uk
Lisa van DijkHead of Knowledge Exchange and Research Supportlisa.williamsvandijk@rau.ac.uk

A recent online event hosted by HudCRES (Huddersfield Centre for Research in Education & Society) explored international students & UK universities: research and practice. Dr. Sylvie Lomer (@SE_Lomer) from Manchester Institute of Education presented on International students in the UK: Deficit narratives and research approaches. Professor Bee Bond (@BeeBond1) from the University of Leeds presented on language as a barrier and an enabler. Prof. Bond wrote an interesting paper exploring the “performance of identity” (Bond, 2019). Language and visibility are important (Bond, 2020). Dr. Manuel Madriaga (@mannymadgriaga) presented at the event. One slide explored benefits of the use of composite characters (Patton & Catching, 2009 in Madriaga, 2022). Rachel Brooks (@_rachel_brooks) is both Professor of Sociology and Associate Dean at the Research and Innovation at the University of Surrey. A number of relevant resources were shared including the Advance HE blog exploring pedagogies of internationalisation and an article mapping pedagogic practices here.

Bibliography

Adkins, B (2015) Deleuze and Guattari’s A Thousand Plateaus A Critical Intoduction and Guide (Edinburgh: Edimburgh University Press)

AdvanceHE (n.d.) Pedagoagies of Interationalisation https://internationalpedagogies.home.blog/ International Pedagogy Blog [blog] (Online) Available at: [Accessed: 2 February 2022]

Bond, B (2019) International students: language, culture and the ‘performance of identity’, Teaching in Higher Education, 24:5, 649-665, DOI: 10.1080/13562517.2019.1593129

Bond, B (2020) Making Language Visible in the University English for Academic Purposes and Internationalisation (Bristol: Blue Ridge Matters, Multlingual Matters

Bond, B (2022) ‘Language as a Barrier and an Enabler’ International students & UK universities: research and practice. Microsoft Teams. January 2022.

Brooks, R (2022) No Title. International students & UK universities: research and practice. Microsoft Teams. January 2022.

Deleuze, G & Guattari, F (1987) A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism & Schizophrenia (London & New York: Continuum)

Gather Presence Inc. (2021) Gather Town (Online) Available at: https://www.gather.town/ [Accessed: 27 January 2022]

hooks, b (1994) Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom (New York: Routledge)

Jacobs, N, Brewer, S, Craigon, P, J, Frey, J, Gutierrez, A, Kanza, S, Manning, L, Munday, S Pearson, S & Sacks, J (2021) Considering the ethical implications of digital collaboration in the Food Sector in Perspective Perspective| Volume 2, Issue 11, 100335, November 12 (Online) Available at: 2021https://www.cell.com/patterns/fulltext/S2666-3899(21)00183-5?_returnURL=https%3A%2F%2Flinkinghub.elsevier.com%2Fretrieve%2Fpii%2FS2666389921001835%3Fshowall%3Dtrue [Accessed: 27 January 2022]

Klaxoon (2022) Klaxoon (Online) Available at: https://klaxoon.com/ [Accessed: 27 January 2022]

Lomer, S (2022) ‘International Students in the UK: Deficit Narratives and Research Approaches’ [Google Document] International students & UK universities: research and practice. Microsoft Teams. January 2022. (Online) Available at: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1F5pbF5s5w_SlFfKmqIzk0RK_YFCLfHbGB0gYC0YcsVg/edit#slide=id.g10e8cb7bfde_0_10 [Accessed: 2 February 2022]

Lomer, S, Mittelmeier, J & Carmichael-Murphy, P (2021) Cash cows or pedagogic partners? Mapping pedagogic practices for and with international students [pdf]. (Online) Available at: at: https://srhe.ac.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Lomer-Mittelmeier-CarmichaelMurphy-FinalReport-SRHE.pdf [Accessed: 2 February 2022]

Madraiga, M (2022) No Title. International students & UK universities: research and practice. Microsoft Teams. January 2022.

Mahon, Á (ed) (2022) Reclaiming Humanity, Humility, and Hope (Singapore: Springer)

Mentimetre (n.d.) Mentimeter (Online) Available at: https://www.mentimeter.com/ [Accessed: 27 January 2022]

Miro (2022) Miro (Online) Available at: https://miro.com/ [Accessed: 27 January 2022]

Tactivos Inc. (2022) Mural Available at: https://www.mural.co/ [Accessed: 27 January 2022]

van Dijk, L & Main, D (2021) Online Collaboration Tools, Royal Agricultural University (RAU) Online Research Seminars. Zoom. January 2022.

Weller, M (2011) The Digital Scholar. How Technology is Transforming Scholarly Practice (London & New York: Bloomsbury)

Wonder Me (2021) (Online) Available at: https://wonder.me/ [Accessed: 27 January 2022]

Introducing Lisa 

There has always been a buzz around education for me and I started my journey by volunteering at playgroup when my eldest child joined. A primary school gardening club followed and, around then, I decided that I wasn’t interested in my ‘office job’ anymore and started to study with The Open University. I will always be grateful for the chance to study alongside of work and family, an opportunity that eventually bridged the gap between my A Levels and an MSc in Medicinal Chemistry. Consequently, I fell in love with both education and science but could never quite decide which bit of science I preferred, although one of my absolute highlights was a week-long residential at the Astronomical Observatory of Mallorca. Cloud scuppered the chance of observing almost anything I had studied in my Astronomy module but the experience of working with lecturers and students, and using the equipment and techniques, was priceless

An opportunity to get more hands-on during an Open University residential week.

Shortly after completing my degree in Natural Science, I trained to teach secondary science with a physics specialism, and started my career in education. It’s hard to beat the buzz and excitement of a busy classroom but I have also gained a lot from working with individuals in focused support or tutoring roles. Personalised support has allowed me to develop a deeper understanding of individual learning challenges and it is so rewarding to help students make progress – particularly when those, hardened to disappointment, realise that they can achieve. Another highlight during this period was volunteering on a youth programme run by the Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution. These workshops were collaborations with the local universities and industry experts, and it was wonderful to work outside of the curriculum, guiding teams of students who had chosen to spend their Saturday mornings doing science!  

Of course World Book Day reaches the Science Department!

The thrill of practical science attracted me to my most recent role as Senior Science Technician in a small secondary school. Working with subject experts to develop activities to support learning is very rewarding. There is never a one size fits all, regardless of a shared curriculum, experienced teachers know the challenges of their subject and will carefully select activities around their students’ needs. Outside of that though the role demands good chemical knowledge, safe hands, the ability to plan and manage a rapid turnaround of equipment across multiple labs and lessons, and the ability to fudge something that just doesn’t work as it should!  

Separating inks with chromatography is simple, and popular.

My journey has brought so many rich experiences, and a deep appreciation of educational opportunity. So, here we are. Equipped with a love of learning, a tendency to produce visual guides for everything, a need to be organised and to organise, and a strong desire not to let the digital world move on without me – the RAU has ended up with me as the newest member of their Learning Technology Team. I am very much looking forward to working on projects and excited to get involved with the learning areas. 

‘A Little More (Digital) Conversation and (Inclusive) Action Please’. New E-Learning Ecologies? From Techno-autobiography to Techno-autoethnography.

UNESCO Inclusive Policy Lab Education & Digital Skills Conversation Event took place on December 8th 2021. The event was organised by Dr Katharine Jewitt from The Open University and Lee Dunn from the Scottish Digital Academy at The Scottish Government. The team can be followed on Twitter @UNDigitalSkills. A keynote was delivered by Dr. Debbie Holley from Bournemouth University. The interdisciplinary event explored four key themes:

1. School Education and Digital Literacy

2. Professional learning, training and capability

3. Digital futures and emerging technologies,

4. Praxis of digital transformation.

‘A little more (digital) conversation and (inclusive) action please’

In an earlier blog post, the idea of techno-biography was explored with William Leschallas, Head of School of Real Estate and Land Management at the RAU. Responding to the theme of Professional Learning, Training and Capability, a research poster was submitted that aimed to both outline the techno-biographic apprach and identify a further development of techno-autoethnography. This method can be used as an opportunity to provide an “identify performance” (Clark, 2020).

“Ethnography is a qualitative research method in which a researcher—an ethnographer—studies a particular social/cultural group with the aim to better understand it. Ethnography is both a process (e.g., one does ethnography) and a product (e.g., one writes an ethnography). In doing ethnography, an ethnographer actively participates in the group in order to gain an insider’s perspective of the group and to have experiences similar to the group members”

Allen 2017

Telling our pedagogical stories could be argued to be part of a “world-centered education” (Biesta, 2022). It could also be part of a new “e-learning ecologies” (Cope & Kalantzis, 2017: p1).

Research posters could be viewed in an immersive virtual gallery created by a tool called Kunst Matrix. This tool “is a unique tool that enables you to create beautiful 3D showcases of your art to impress art lovers and collectors. Digitally present and manage your art, including an augmented reality app to show a preview of your work in any space you like!” (Kunst Matrix, n.d.). The virtual gallery with the research posters cna be accessed here.

Exploring the research posters in the Virtual Gallery using Kunst Matrix

Another potential development could be to explore heuristic inquiry.

“Heuristic inquiry attempts to discover the nature and meaning of phenomenon through internal pathways of self using the processes of self-reflection, exploration, and elucidation of the nature of phenomenon that is being studied”

(Douglass & Moustakas, 1995, in Djuraskovic & arthur, 2010: p1572)

The implication for the role of the researcher is that it is possible to “…explore openly and pursue the creative path that originates inside of one ’s being and that discovers its direction and meaning within oneself” (Djuraskovic & Arthur, 2010: p1572).

The hashtag on Twitter for the event was #UNDigitalSkills.

The research poster can be accessed online here and the entire collection of research posters can be both accessed and downloaded here.

A PDF version of the research poster can be accessed below:

‘I’m a Learning Technologist. Get Me Out of Here’. A techno-autoethnographic poem’ is a development of the techno-biographic approach exploring techno-autoethnography and is published in the Being creative in the face of adversity. The #creativeHE Annual 2021. Creativity for Learning in Higher Education Community, #creativeHE here. “Ethnographically based poetry” can an a creative opportunity to share our stories (Prince 2021). A further opportunity to develop the techno-autoethnographic approach will be at the Virtually Undisciplined: Diversifying Higher Education and Research through interconnectivity conference organised by Women in Academic Support Network (WIASN) in March – April 2022.

Bibliography

Allen, M (ed) Ethnography in The SAGE Encyclopedia of Communication Research Methods (Online) Available at: https://dx.doi.org/10.4135/9781483381411.n169 [Accessed: 8 December 2021]

Biesta, G (2022) World-Centered Education A View for the Present (1st ed) (New York & Oxon: Routledge)

Clark, D. (2020) Tech and me: an autoethnographic account of digital literacy as an identity performance. Research in Learning Technology, 28. (Online) Available at: https://doi.org/10.25304/rlt.v28.2389 [Accessed: 8 December 2021]

Cope, B & Kalantzis, M (eds) (2017) ‘Conceptualising Environments‘ in e-Learning Ecologies: Principles for New Learning and Assessment. pp1-46 (New York & London: Routledge)

Djuraskovic, I & Arthur, N (2010) Heuristic Inquiry: A Personal Journey of Acculturation and Identity Reconstruction [pdf] in The Qualitative Report Volume 15 Number 6 November 2010 pp1569-1593(Online) Available at: http://www.nova.edu/ssss/QR/QR15-6/djuraskovic.pdf

Kunst Matrix (n.d.) (Online) Available at: https://www.kunstmatrix.com/en [Accessed: 8 December 2021]

Jewitt, K (2021): UNESCO Inclusive Policy Lab Education and Digital Skills: A Conversation Event. 8 December 2021 Collection. The Open University. Collection. (Online) Available at:https://doi.org/10.21954/ou.rd.c.5752247.v5 [Accessed: 17 December 2021]

Prince, C (2021) Experiments in Methodology: Sensory and Poetic Threads of Inquiry, Resistance, and Transformation. Qualitative Inquiry. [e-journal] 2022: 28 (1):94-107. DOI: 10.1177/10778004211014611

Leschallas, W & McDonald, P (2021) Techno-autobiography & the Transnational Online Pivot: Exploring a Lecturer’s Experience of Teaching Online. Digitalrau.wordpress.com Digital Transformation Blog [blog] 12th Dec. Available at: https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/01/12/techno-autobiography-the-transnational-online-pivot-exploring-a-lecturers-experience-of-teaching-online/ [Accessed: 8 December 2021]

McDonald, P (2021) ‘I’m a Learning Technologist. Get Me Out of Here’. A techno-autoethnographic poem’ in Tasler, N., O’Brien, R, E. & Spiers, A. (eds.) (2021) Being creative in the face of adversity. The #creativeHE Annual 2021. Creativity for Learning in Higher Education Community, #creativeHE [e-journal] pp24-27 DOI: https://doi.org/10.25416/NTR.17709860.v1  

McDonald, P & Leschallas, W (2021) Exploring the Impact of Techno-biography on the development of Digital Literacy. Poster presented at: UNESCO Inclusive Policy Lab Education and Digital Skills: A Conversation Event. 8 December 2021 (Online) Available at: https://ordo.open.ac.uk/articles/poster/Exploring_the_impact_of_Techno-biography_on_the_development_of_Digital_Literacy/17212457?backTo=/collections/UNESCO_Inclusive_Policy_Lab_Education_and_Digital_Skills_A_Conversation_Event_8_December_2021_Collection/5752247 [Accessed: 17th December 2021]

The Open University (n.d.) UNESCO Inclusive Policy Lab Education and Digital Skills: A Conversation Event. 8 December 2021 Collection (Online) Available at: https://ordo.open.ac.uk/collections UNESCO_Inclusive_Policy_Lab_Education_and_Digital_Skills_A_Conversation_Event_8_December_2021_Collection/5752247/5 [Accessed: 17 December 2021]

UNESCO (n.d.) Inclusive Policy Lab (Online) Available at: https://en.unesco.org/inclusivepolicylab/ [Accessed: 8 December 2021]

Women in Academic Support Network (WIASN) (2022) Virtually Undisciplined: Diversifying Higher Education and Research through interconnectivity (Online) Available at: https://www.wiasn.com/conference-call/?fbclid=IwAR3IFIrUjpwDp0nLvMRZko7nGYzkvzBAIKOQaDccmpIhkZ7yNgLr3cEtabo [Accessed 7 January 2022

Arvorum Cultus Pecorumque. Caring for the (Digital) Fields and the Beasts.

‘Look after the (Digital) land, and it will look after You’

The Royal Agricultural University’s Latin motto is from Virgil’s Georgics. The recent move to online learning due to the impact of the global pandemic and with the implications for a potential future hybrid pedagogical model, could mean that we can conceptualise the possibility of care in a digital context.

For both SDAU and QAU, RAU teaching staff deliver 45-minute interactive sessions to approximately 150 students. An ongoing pedagogical challenge is to encourage as much interaction as possible. Often students are reluctant to turn their cameras on and unmute to speak during these sessions. It could be argued that students are ‘lurking’ in online envirnoments.

“Lurking is often seen as a problem in online education, particularly in fully online,

distance/distributed learning contexts”

Kuhn, Havemann, Kogeoglu & Bozkurt, 2021: p2

During an interactive session on Zoom, verbal communication is relied on for example if a student is delivering a presentation and sharing their screen. A majority of functions in Zoom are concerned with the development and practice of the verbal mode, for example mute/unmute. What if there was a different way to communicate that does not involve using the camera or microphone? This is where non-verbal feedback came in. Whilst meeting reactions have been used in the past, non-verbal feedback provides a new layer of communication and an opportunity to interact effectively.

Non-verbal Feedback Panel in Zoom

In October 2021, SDAU students were shown how to use non-verbal feedback and meeting reactions in Zoom. “…Meeting participants can place an icon in their video panel and beside their name in the participants panel to communicate with the host and other participants without disrupting the flow of the meeting. For example, selecting the Slow down icon places the icon in your video panel and beside your name to indicate you would like the host or presenter to go slower” (Zoom Video Communications, 2021).

Exploring Non-verbal Feedback

Providing students with an opportunity for non-verbal communication can help to provide the Lecturer with a confirmation that students are listening and/or have understood. Students can use non-verbal feedback as a way to build confidence in developing verbal feedback skills.

Perhaps non-verbal feedback is connected to dual coding:

“Human cognition is unique in that it has become specisalised for dealing simultaneously with language and non-verbal objects and events”

(Paivio, 1986 in Kirschner in Caviglioli, 2019

Exploring Zoom

Agile stationary was demonstrated to the students in the form of a deck of video conferencing cards. Showing the cards on the screen with the camera on can help with communication in a live meeting. I also suggested that students could create their own cards. This could enable students to create a personalised learning experience. It is also possible to suggest improvements and there is an Agile Games Workshop Meetup.

Exploring Agile Stationary

“We believe that physical products support embodied cognition without becoming distracting and provide the fastest feedback loop in the simplest possible setting” (Agile Stationery, 2021).

(Agile Stationery, 2021)

Having reflected on Zoom literacies as part of the #ukfechat here, the extent to which breakout rooms could improve student engagement in a blog post here and here, artifactual literacy has been explored (Pahl & Rowsell, 2010). How can we use found objects to improve the interactive experience of the Zoom sessions. When does an object become an artifact and vice versa?

“A found object is a natural or man-made object, or fragment of an object, that is found (or sometimes bought) by an artist and kept because of some intrinsic interest the artist sees in it”

(Tate Modern, n.d.).

What could students create in a Zoom session that could relate to agriculture? I explored the range of creative packs in a local shop.

Found Objects

A Microsoft Form was used to evaluate what students thought about non-verbal feedback, meeting reactions, agile stationary:

1. The majority of students thought that found objects improved engagement

2. The majority of students thought that non-verbal feedback tool and meeting reactions were a positive way to interact in the session?

3. For the question “How can the non-verbal feedback tool and meeting reactions be improved?” one answer was “The teacher can initiate a vote during the lecture and ask the students to answer. Through the data analysis, the students can grasp the situation and infer the points of doubt“,

4. For the question “How did the agile stationary help with interaction in the session?” one answer was “In some way, it can help teacher know about how much knowledge students has masterd,and adjust the process of class.”.

Bibliography

Agile Stationary (2021) Agil a Stationary (Online) Available at: https://agilestationery.com/ [Accessed 26 October 2021]

Caviglioli, O (2019) Dual Coding for Teachers (Woodbridge: John Catt Educational Ltd)

Kuhn H., C., Havemann, L., Koseoglu, S., & Bozkurt, A. (2021). Three lenses on lurking:
Making sense of digital silence. In J. Hoffman & P. Blessinger (Eds.), International
perspectives in online instruction (p. 83-93). Emerald Publishing Limited. (Online) Available at: https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/S2055-364120210000040006/full/html [Accessed 3 November 2021]

Pahl, J & Rowsell J (2010) Artifactual Literacies: Every Object Tells a Story (Language and Literacy Series) (Amsterdam & New York: Teachers College Press)

Maro, P.V. (29 BCE). Virgil: Eclogues, Georgics, Aeneid. Translated by H.R. Fairclough. Loeb Classical Library. Harvard University Press: Cambridge, MA. 1916.

Meetup LLC (2021) Agile Games Workshop Meetup in London (Online) Available at: https://www.meetup.com/Agile-Games-Workshop/ [Accessed 26 October 2021]

McDonald, P (2021) Technology to Transgress. Spinoza, Energy & Expeditions of Joy. Exploring Critical Zoom Literacies with #ukfechat https://digitalrau.wordpress.com blog, [blog] 21 Oct. Available at: https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/10/05/technology-to-transgress-spinoza-energy-expeditions-of-joy-exploring-critical-zoom-literacies-with-ukfechat/ [Accessed 26 October 2021]

McDonald, P (2021) Indiana Jones & the Breakout Tombs. Exploring Student Zoom Literacy https://digitalrau.wordpress.com blog, [blog] 9 Oct. Available at: https://digitalrau.wordpress.com/2021/10/09/indiana-jones-the-breakout-tombs-exploring-student-zoom-literacy/ [Accessed 26 October 2021]

Tate Modern (n.d.) Found Objects (Online) Available at: https://www.tate.org.uk/art/art-terms/f/found-object [Accessed 26 October 2021]

Taylorson, L (2021) ukfechat curation: 30/09/2021 – Technology to Transgress: Critical Zoom Literacies hosted by @PipMac6 Wakelet Collection (Online) Available at: https://wakelet.com/wake/A5H5cVpqqNamjw5nsy6Wk [Accessed 26 October 2021]

Zoom Video Communications (2021) Nonverbal feedback and meeting reactions(Online) Available at: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/115001286183-Nonverbal-feedback-during-meetings [Accessed 26 October 2021]