Physical and digital learning spaces

CSM clear dayA criticism of personal digital technologies is that they can distract students in class. However, as the statements below illustrate, physical settings can also be awash with distractions that hinder learning and teaching. With Art and Design higher education institutions facing increasing demands on their physical spaces, it’s worthwhile asking ourselves whether the very technologies we criticise might actually enable new models of learning and teaching, and provide better environments online than some of the physical locations we are using at present. Continue reading

UAL Exchange: a new app for cross-disciplinary collaboration

UAL Exchange AppAn excellent example of learning in action – recent MA Innovation Management graduate Vuong Tong has developed UAL Exchange, an iOS Application that aims to promote cross-disciplinary collaboration and knowledge share across the University of the Arts London (UAL). Developed while working at Central Saint Martins’ Innovation Centre last year, Vuong invited several of his fellow MA:IM colleagues (Digital Present’s Rita Fernandez included) to take part in the ideation stage of the project. The final proposal was funded by SEE (Student Enterprise & Employability), and recently Rita helped the preparations to launch UAL Exchange on the App Store, and to the UAL community. Continue reading

Emerging digital-materiality workshop: discussion one

Lady with hole, Souzou Exhibition

Lady with hole, Souzou Exhibition

How do we use ‘time passing’ as a conceptual tool for web development? Can we create and present digital objects that have reciprocal aesthetic relationships with their material counterparts? How do we enact our journeys of curiosity when experiencing an exhibition digitally, or physically? These are just three questions that arose from Central Saint Martins’ recent workshop exploring digital-materiality with the Wellcome Trust. Continue reading

Digital Literacy: Creative Commons licences

YouTube Preview Image

The University’s Process Arts holds a great deal of really useful information about Creative Commons licences and related IP and copyright information related to our digital world. Process Arts is an integral part of our virtual learning environment, and it’s well worth spending some time mooching about. Continue reading

MOOCs: Daphne Koller of Coursera shares insights

Grab from Coursera site

“2012 was the year of the MOOC” claimed Coursera co-founder and Professor of Computing at Stanford Universtiy, Daphne Koller. This week at BETT she shared an avalanche of stats about massive open online courses (MOOCs), and provided insights into the Coursera platform specifically.

As of 29th January two and a half million people had signed-up to take one of Coursera’s 215 courses; 28% of the student body is from Europe and 35% from North America. Continue reading

BA Fashion Communication and Promotion: Challenging assumptions

Student blog

CSM tutor Hywel Davies and the second year BA Fashion Communication and Promotion (FCP) cohort at CSM have been exploring the uses of blogs to support collaboration within an arts and design environment. The students are working in groups to produce short film responses to a forthcoming prestigious exhibition in London, and they are investigating blogs as part of the project.

In the spirit of my ‘findings on the fly’ open research approach, this article shares insights from the study thus far. Continue reading

Digital Present: Innovation and MOOCs

Open University Vice-Chancellor, Martin Bean

A 7% student completion rate suggests that there is much to learn about the world of massive open online courses (MOOCs). Course providers, and students, are currently exploring how to engage with these new learning environments. So, to realise the potential of MOOCs it seems essential to foster a sharing relationship between all participants – together becoming a vibrant learning community. Continue reading

Blogs: Maxim Northover shares his insights

Filmmaker Maxim Northover is in his final year of MA Character Animation at Central Saint Martins and since embarking on the course has built up a strong blog. He is taught by Course Director Birgitta Hosea, whose own blog Expanded Animation featured in an earlier post on Digital Present. Here, we question Maxim on his approach to running his blog and how it benefits his creative and critical practice.

Continue reading

Skype at CSM: staff survey feedback

CSM MIT collaborative workshop using Skype

Historically Central Saint Martins has had a tricky relationship with Skype. For a number of years, and for a number of reasons, Skype services were not accessible through the university’s network. Whilst one argument maintained that the university’s ‘digital experience’ provision was less than staff and students would expect when outside of the institution, a counter claim was that Skype used excessive bandwidth and posed potential security issues for the university network as a whole. Both points were valid, and the situation highlights the complex issues faced by institutions worldwide when dealing with the rapid advancement of digital systems.

Today, however, as highlighted in the recent CSM Social Media and Digital Tools survey, there is a marked increase in the number of staff using Skype as part of their university life. Continue reading

Fabulous ‘CSM Learning Studio’ staff workshop: a focus on 4D!

What goes on in there?

What goes on in there?

The Learning Studio is a community of practice around learning technology use in Art and Design within UAL. It is open to anyone to join and participate, whatever your role or current use or experience of learning technology. The approach is very informal and the event is aimed at non-expert users. Continue reading