The Learning Zone at King’s Cross

LZ@KX

The Learning Zone at King’s Cross is a new intervention at Central Saint Martins. Since September 2012, 2 new learning zones (social learning spaces open to any UAL student) have been in operation, replacing the former facility at High Holborn. One is located in the library at Elephant and Castle, and the other is here on the fourth floor of the Granary Building. With space a premium and seven-day-a-week access, both aim to provide students with flexible, accessible and comfortable workspaces. David Bracegirdle is LZ@KX manager and spoke to us about his receptive, student-focused approach to the space, the range of technologies on offer and the importance of integrating digital and traditional resources.

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Taking Care of Business? The political economy of MOOCs and Open Education

The future of education?

In this provocative article John Casey, Open Education Project Manager at the university’s Centre for Learning and Teaching in Arts and Design (CLTAD), reflects on the massive changes underway in open education around the world. Driven by a mix of new technology, idealism, politics and venture capital in a time of increasing economic austerity, the movement has plenty of contradictions as well as exciting opportunities. Continue reading

Workflow: who, what, where, when, why, how?

Workflow - home page.

Workflow - home page.

E-Learning Educational Developer John Jackson, from the Centre for Learning and Teaching in Art and Design (CLTAD), provides an overview of the ePortfolio platform Workflow, one of the latest digital tools supported by the university. In doing so, he offers an alternative to blogs, and suggests that the general lack of awareness of this ePortfolio technology by staff and students is holding back its adoption across the institution. Continue reading

Smartphone: intimate, incidental, and indispensible

FaceTime on the 76 bus to Kings Cross

Personal mobile devices provide immediate location independent access to information, and are used as powerful creative tools by arts and design students at Central Saint Martins. The relationships that they have with their smartphones are evolving and multifaceted, yet at the same time students often perceive this mobile device as a mundane object, failing to acknowledge the many roles it plays in their lives. Smartphones are central to the ways in which many students are navigating their daily experience, eg waking up to the Marimba ringtone, international video-conferencing on the bus, and using any number of mobile apps to consider physical space. The smartphone appears to be an endlessly pliable technology that has glided into, and altered, our social and cultural processes. Continue reading

facebook and blogs: staff survey feedback 2012

MA Character Animation student, Jiamin Liu, missbowtie.com

The recently published article featuring CSM’s Birgitta Hosea and her Expanded Animation blog highlights the many roles blogs can serve, and how they can evolve. This post provides more general insights about staff engagement with blogs and facebook.

The fact that colleagues are using facebook and blogs in multiple ways shone through in the recent survey exploring staff engagement with digital tools and social media across the College; 28% of staff use blogs as part of their College role, and 33% are using facebook. There is much overlap in the ways that both services are used, eg course promotion and keeping in touch with alumni, with several departments adopting the tools, such as individual courses, the library and marketing. Continue reading

Expanded Animation: Birgitta Hosea’s blog

Birgitta Hosea is Course Director of MA Character Animation at CSM and Research Leader for the Centre for Performance. Birgitta edits an eclectic and engaging blog – Expanded Animation – that serves as a platform for ideas and reflection, and showcases students’ work as well as her own. She spoke to us about the motivation behind her blog, and how it now serves as a marketing and networking tool.

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Authenticity, accountability and data privacy

Anonymous, authentic, private?

Charlotte Webb, from the university’s Centre for Learning and Teaching in Arts and Design (CLTAD) reflects upon notions of digital identities, in particular online authenticity and anonymity. Continue reading