Students as Creative Producers' ICEL 2013 conference presentation

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This presentation describes how indicators for Connected Learning are present in the extra-mural presences that two University of Cape Town students created.

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  • Today I’m going to present case studies for two students, ‘Vince’ and ‘Odette’, both first years at the University of Cape Town.
  • I will talk through select examples of how their use of online services to create and publish work features indicators of a ‘Connected Learning’ pedagogical approach.
  • This paper results from the fourth phase of the ICT Access and Use project briefly which <Cheryl to pop-up> will describe.We chose to feature two students who were using of online media to pursue writing, and other, ambitions outside of formal curriculum requirements in 2010.
  • We chose “Vince” and Odette” after analysing 26 first-year university students’ data.
  • While there is a broad body of South African research into media production in varied educational contexts, gaps exist in the research concerning ‘unofficial’ (or informal) writing and videography by students using online services for self-publication.
  • Toframe creative production we follow the lead of Ito and others (pointer) who highlight the importance of producing imaginative and expressive forms and that it is shaped by available media.They make an interesting distinction between a‘friendship’ driven genre of practice and an ‘interest driven’ one, such as creative production. The former is driven by networks of friends, while the latter may structure friendships and practices.
  • It is interesting that all 26 research subjects used online social networks to support their friendships.Just four mentioned using online services to create digital presences as an anonymous journal and fiction writer, a creative writer/poet, a quartet singer…
  • … and a journalist.
  • As you see, none of our subjects at Fort Hare…
  • … or Rhodes University mentioned using online services to share their creative productions.
  • Given the 5,000 word limit for ICEL 2013 papers, we chose two students whose approach to sharing creative productions differed the most. This was after developing three interesting case studies–and if anyone can suggest an appropriate forum to build on this presentation, do let us know after this talk, please?I followed up “Vince” in 2012 and learnt that his online presences had changed significantly, while an online search for Odette revealed few changes.
  • During the analysis phase, it became clear that these two case studies reveal high levels of resonance with Connected Learning (or CL), a new pedagogical framework described by Ito and others.For a full explanation, you can read a 90-page report (point) from the Digital Media and Learning Network hub’s website.
  • This “executive summary” graphic provides a high-level view of the aspects and indicators that should be present in pedagogy that follows a CL framework.I will talk through these, next…
  • The Connected Learning pedagogical framework knits together three crucial contexts for learning: CL posits that through linking these different spheres of learning—’peer culture’, ‘interests’ and ‘academic subjects’— interest-driven and meaningful learning can be better supported in ways that take advantage of the democratizing potential of digital networks and online resources.
  • The experience of learning that CL provides is production centered approach using digital tools. Its online communities provide opportunities for support around a shared purpose and an openly networked approach ideally makes learning resources readily accessible to participants in well-resourced contexts.
  • The design principles aspect of CL intend to realise learning that provides: varied experiences to broaden participation; encourage learning through these experiences; provides constant challenge through a need to know and need to share; and highlights how everything is inter-connected by providing multiple learning contexts.
  • The new media amplification CL aspect supports responsive feedback to support diversity, thereby fostering engagement and self-expression.Search engines are used to access information and form relationships that support their self-defined directed learning in online communitites.Non-dominant groups are encouraged to develop their voices and build capacity. This supports diversity.
  • To recap, I like this poster which provides an overview of Connected Learning and highlights key aspects: it is production-centered, interest, shared purpose and is openly networked, linking peer culture and academic domains.
  • As our Department of Education learnt in its failed policy adoption of ‘Outcomes Based Education, South Africa must be wary of uncritically importing educational approaches that are unlikely to work outside well-resourced contexts. Designed for well-resourced, secondary schools, Connected Learning may be best translated in our context of local universities. As the next two examples show, Internet and computer access can be sufficient for students to access the online community support they need to have Connected Learning experiences.
  • Vince has a well-resourced communication ecology, ready access to his own computer and the fast broadband speed that the university offers.
  • In an open-ended interview, Vince was very upfront about the importance of creating a presence as a songwriter/band singer on Facebook. For example, using it for feedback on song lyric ideas.
  • Although there are opportunities to write creatively in the Media Production course, Vince perceived that he would not get feedback on anything outside discursive writing.
  • I have listed the aspects of CL on the right and ‘ticked off’ the indicators present in Vince’s experiences of online writing.
  • In 2013, I did an online search for him and saw that his online presences had changed – his LinkedIn and Twitter profiles highlight his aspirations as a film-maker. On LinkedIn, he describes himself as a co-owner of a film company.
  • He uses Prezi to share a documentary pitch and other presentations he made.
  • He published course-work and extra-mural videos he made to Youtube and Vimeo channels.
  • Similar to his writing presences in 2011, his film-related online presences also resonated with Connected Learning. Although he is modest about the quality of his online presence as a writer and film-maker, he believes the creating the latter personae has provided opportunities to voice his opinion as well as new learning opportunities.
  • A concrete example was a three minute short film he shot during the two weeks that he participated in the Ghetto Film School.
  • He and another UCT student won an all-expenses-paid trip to screen their short movies at the Sundance Film Festival.
  • Odette has a very different media ecology to Vince in which she has limited access to the Internet.
  • High level about the research- how does what we know suggest changes to Higher Education.
  • Students as Creative Producers' ICEL 2013 conference presentation

    1. 1. Students as creative producers Travis Noakes, Laura Czerniewicz, Cheryl Brown. University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa. travis.noakes@uct.ac.za laura.czerniewicz@uct.ac.za cheryl.brown@uct.ac.za #connected learning “Vince” from online songwriter and poet to scriptwriter, film maker and director. “Odette”, a private diarist and cautious sharer of online writing. Centre for Educational Technology www.cet.uct.ac.za 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 1
    2. 2. “ „Unofficial‟ use of Internet services by two Media Studies students to compliment their Tertiary Education and corresponding to indicators for „Connected Learning‟ ” „Students as creative producers’ A.K.A. 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 2
    3. 3. International Development and Research Council-funded ICT Access and Use Project, phase 4 Paper results from the fourth phase (2011-12) of the „Student ICT Access and Use‟ project (2004- 12). Phase four used digital ethnographies to explore first-year students‟ day-to-day activities with ICT on four South African university campuses, and outside them.  Overview at http://www.cet.uct.ac.za/virtualmobius  Blog at https://studentictaccess.uct.ac.za 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 3
    4. 4. The two subjects our paper features were identified in analysing the following sources: 1. Individual interviews 2. Focus groups 3. Day experience media videos 4. Screenshots and transcriptions of computer use Qualitative research software (NVivo 9) was used to apply coding matrices* to these sources. Three cases emerged in which students spoke of their informal use of online services to create online presences as writers. Two student cases from 26 research subjects * http://www.travisnoakes.co.za/2012/04/new-codings-for-ict-access-and-use.html 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 4
    5. 5. Research into Media Production Projects in local educational settings • Blogging (Cronje, 2012) • Digital storytelling (Barnes, Gachago and Ivala, 2013) • Filming and editing with smartphones (Hassreiter, Walton & Marsden. 2011) • Video editing and production (Deacon, Morrison & Stadler. 2005. Cronje, 2008, 2009.) • Gaming and play (Walton, 2008. Pallitt, Venter and Koloko, 2011. Pallitt, 2012.) • Music making (Haupt, 2008, 2012. Scott, 2012.) • Podcasting (N‟gambi, 2012) • Mobile phone publications (Botha, Vosloo, Kuner & van den Berg, 2011. Vosloo, Walton, Deumert 2009.) • „Visual Arts showcase e-portfolio‟ designs (Noakes, 2012) • Wiki-based e-portfolios (Horwitz and Hodgkinson-Williams, 2010) 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 5
    6. 6. Understanding Creative Production • Creative production results in imaginative and expressive forms that are shaped by student choices and the media available to them (page 245*). As such, it can be viewed as primarily an interest-driven genre of participation that may structure friendship-driven networks and practices. *„Hanging Out, Messing Around and Geeking Out‟ by Ito et al., MIT Press, 2010. 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 6
    7. 7. Use of online services for friendship and creative production in 2011 by University of Cape Town subjects 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 7
    8. 8. Use of online services for friendship and creative production in 2011 by University of the Free State subjects 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 8
    9. 9. Use of online services for friendship in 2011 by University of Fort Hare subjects 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 9
    10. 10. Use of online services for friendship in 2011 by Rhodes University subjects 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 10
    11. 11. Two cases selected based on their contrasting approaches to creative production 1. “Vince” (used many services from 2011-13 as his online identities and self-concept developed) 2. “Jake” (used varied services in creating an online identity as a journalist between 2011-13) 3. “Sidumo” (limited to promoting his acapella group online in 2011) 4. “Odette” (used a few services to promote her personal writing in 2011) 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 11
    12. 12. #connectedlearning The „Connected Learning Report‟ (Ito, et al. 2013) is available for free via www.dmlhub.net. Where can you find out about Connected Learning? 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 12
    13. 13. Connected Learning as a heuristic to explore interconnections between two student cases Learning happens by doing Everyone can participate Challenge is constant Contexts for learning Experience of learning Design principles „Connected Learning Report‟ (Ito, et al. 2013), page 12 Interest powered Peer-supported Academically orientated Shared- purpose Production- centered Openly networked Increasing accessibility to knowledge and learning experiences Fostering engagement and self-expression Expanding social supports for interests New media amplification Expanding diversity and building capacity Everything is interconnected Framework Aspects Indicators 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 13
    14. 14. Connected Learning as a heuristic to explore interconnections between two student cases In everyday experiences with peers and friends, young people contribute, share and give feedback in inclusive social experiences that are fluid and highly engaging. When a subject is personally interesting and relevant, learners achieve much higher order learning outcomes. A unique feature of this approach is that learners are encouraged to link their activities across academic, civic and/or career domains. Learners flourish and realize their potential when they can connect their interests and social engagement to academic studies, civic engagement and community outcomes. Interest powered Peer-supported Academically orientated Contexts for learning Experience of learning Design principles New media amplification „Connected Learning Report‟ (Ito, et al. 2013), page 12 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 14
    15. 15. Connected Learning as a heuristic to explore interconnections between two student cases Digital tools provide opportunities for the creative production of a wide variety of content in experimental and active ways. Online communities provide unprecedented opportunities for cross-cultural and cross-generational learning around common goals and interests. Online platforms and digital platforms may make learning resources abundant, accessible and visible across all learner settings. Shared-purpose Production- centered Openly networked Contexts for learning Experience of learning Design principles New media amplification „Connected Learning Report‟ (Ito, et al. 2013), page 12 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 15
    16. 16. Connected Learning as a heuristic to explore interconnections between two student cases Experiences provide many different ways for individuals and groups to participate. Learning is experiential and part of the pursuit of meaningful activities and projects. Interest or cultivation of an interest creates both a „need to know‟ and a „need to share‟. Young people are provided with multiple learning contexts for engaging in connected learning- contexts in which they receive immediate feedback on progress, have access to tools for planning and reflection and are given opportunities for mastery of specialist language and practices. Learning happens by doing Everyone can participate Challenge is constant Contexts for learning Experience of learning Design principles New media amplification „Connected Learning Report‟ (Ito, et al. 2013), page 12 Everything is interconnected 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 16
    17. 17. Connected Learning as a heuristic to explore interconnections between two student cases Interactive, immersive and personalized technologies provide responsive feedback, support a diversity of learning styles and literacy, and pace learning according to individual needs. Through online search, educational resources and communities of expertise and interest, young people can easily access information and find relationships that support self-directed and interest-driven learning. Through social media, young people can form relationships with peers and caring adults that are centered in interests, expertise, and future opportunity in areas of interest. New media networks empower marhginalised and non- institutionalised groups and cultures to have voice, mobilize, organize and build economic capacity. Increasing accessibility to knowledge and learning experiences Fostering engagement and self-expression Expanding social supports for interests Contexts for learning Experience of learning Design principles New media amplification „Connected Learning Report‟ (Ito, et al. 2013), page 12 Expanding diversity and building capacity 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 17
    18. 18. Avisualoverviewof ConnectedLearning Sourced from http://connectedlearning.tv/infographic 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 18
    19. 19. Connected Learning in a South African context: changed in translation Connected Learning is a pedagogical framework for secondary school learning developed based on research in the United States and Great Britain in response to broader societal challenges in their developed world environments. Few secondary schools in South Africa (and other developing world countries) are likely to have the kinds of „technological-‟, „contextual-‟ and „content resourcing‟ support (Czerniewicz and Brown, 2004) necessary to support the educational use of ICT to achieve a Connected Learning pedagogy. Motivated students at local universities that offer sufficient computer access and broadband speed can use these technological resources to access sufficient contextual and content support to achieve learning experiences which resonate with those experienced in the Connected Learning framework. 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 19
    20. 20. “Vince” • Long history of ICT ownership and use (first cell phone at 12) • Owns an Apple laptop and a Blackberry (previously an iPhone) • Lives in university residence (fastest broadband speeds in SA, 3 GB of data a month) • Aspirant songwriter and poet in 2010 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 20
    21. 21. Vince‟s interest in songwriting shapes the types of Facebook statuses he created in 2011 Regarding his Facebook status updates, he said, „I don't write like those stupid personal statuses, where like you are having a cup of tea with your best friend. No. If I find something which is quite insightful or profound or interesting, then I will put it up and see how people react to it.‟ (Int1, 2011, R16) 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 21
    22. 22. Vince shares his poetry and fiction writing in 2011 „... often I feel like writing, so I'll randomly just try to find a writing competition. Because I'm always, either I'm writing songs or I'm writing poems, or something of the sort. Um, ja. So what do I do?‟ (Int2, 2011, R14). Sourced from www.fanstory.com Sourced from voices.net.com 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 22
    23. 23. Vince‟s online writing community interactions resonances with Connected Learning in 2011 Intensely personal reviews and a close online friendship he had made contributed to Vince‟s belief that there „…really is an online community‟. In response to a poem Vince wrote for his Dad‟s Birthday, an American mother wrote; „My three sons are just a little younger than you and would dearly love to think of their father this way, because they are fine young men, like you they do love him, even though he doesn't know they exist, only as showpieces when they do well. Always value your relationship with your Dad.‟ Participation in this online community assisted him to be more receptive to criticism, „I was extremely defensive of my poetry when I joined the site and gradually learned to calm down more and try to better understand and consider the reviewers criticisms before I launched into a diatribe.‟ (email, 07/02/2012) It also helped him moderate his criticism, „... after a while of, um, seeing other people's reviews and stuff, I realised that actually, no, this site is more like, it is to help people to get better at writing. So, it's not really that objective, it's kind of like, give each other nice ratings and prop each other up, thing. So, it's less harsh than I understood and it is more of an online community, like people are friendly. And it is nice as you are sharing something intimate.‟ (Int2, 2011, R32). ✔ Interest powered ✔ Peer-supported ✔ Academically orientated Contexts for learning ✔ Shared-purpose ✔ Production-centered ✔ Openly networked Experience of learning ✔ Learning happens by doing ✔ Everyone participates BUT $30 for many reviews ✔ Challenge is constant ✔ Everything is interconnected Design principles ✔ Increasing accessibility to knowledge and learning ✔ Fostering engagement and self-expression ✔ Expanding social supports for interests ✔ Expanding diversity and building capacity New media amplification 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 23
    24. 24. Vince contributes an article to Varsity Vibes in 2011 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 24
    25. 25. During 2012, his entire online footprint changed from one that which „reflects the identity of a confused but inspired and enthusiastic song writer (in which I would try to emulate the rebellious voice and philosophies of my namesake - Bob Dylan - in little lyric status updates) to one that reflects the calmer, but no less confused, identity of an aspiring film maker (in which I would offer my thoughts on movies I love and my activities.‟ (email, 07/02/2012) Vince changes his online persona in 2012 Vince‟s profile description on Twitter.com, 2013. Google+, Part of Vince‟s profile description on LinkedIn.com, 2013. 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 25
    26. 26. Vince on Prezi in 2013 Vince‟s presentations on prezi.com, 2013. 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 26
    27. 27. Vince‟s Youtube and Vimeo channels in 2013 Vince‟s channel on youtube.com, 2013. Vince‟s channel on vimeo.com, 2013. 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 27
    28. 28. Vince‟s online activities and Connected Learning Indicators Vince believes these presences support his ability to network and develop a career in film: He describes his online presences as a „better way for people to get to know me and what I have to say‟, helping him to develop social support in a film-industry that „seems to boil down to the old axiom that "it's not what you know, it's who you know" and what better way for people to get to know me and what I have to say than my online writing (including Facebook, Youtube and Twitter). Not to mention my ability to connect with the people that I need to know through these social networking sites. In no way am I saying that I think my "online writing presence" is of a good quality but rather that it gives me the opportunity to have a voice.‟ (email, 07/02/2012) ✔ Interest powered ✔ Peer-supported ✔ Academically orientated Contexts for learning ✔ Shared-purpose ✔ Production-centered ✔ Openly networked Experience of learning ✔ Learning happens by doing ✔ Everyone participates ✔ Challenge is constant ✔ Everything is interconnected Design principles ✔ Increasing accessibility to knowledge and learning ✔ Fostering engagement and self-expression ✔ Expanding social supports for interests ✔ Expanding diversity and building capacity New media amplification 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 28
    29. 29. Ghetto Film School Google+ Hangout Vince‟s online presences enabled him to connect with important people and organisations, like the Ghetto Film School of LA (GFS). The GFS is an arts programme that primarily assists learners in the US with developing story- and film-making skills and organises a MasterClass for international students via Google Plus‟ Hangouts. Sourced from ghettofilm.org, 2013. Sourced from plus.google.com/+GhettoFilmSchool, 2013. 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 29
    30. 30. Vince wins a trip to the Sundance Film Festival In 2012 Vince entered a GFS competition and used it to produce an „expertly crafted and visually arresting‟ video which was chosen to be showcased at the Sundance Film Festival in 2013 and consequently sponsored his attendance. Article on uct.ac.za, 2013. 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 30
    31. 31. “Odette” • Odette did not own a laptop in first-year, but could access social networks via her Samsung smartphone. • She prefers to view the internet on the computer screen and accesses it mainly on campus; in the library or computer labs. • She also occasionally accessed the internet on her boyfriend‟s laptop, using her or her sister‟s mobile phone as a modem. Screenshot from Odette‟s Facebook newsfeed, 2013. 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 31
    32. 32. Odette‟s interest in private journal and fiction writing shapes the types of presences she created in 2011 Unlike Vince, Odette is concerned about the types of criticism her fiction writing might receive and the potential for her writing to be plagiarized. Rather than email herself copies of her work as a copyright record, she prefers not to publish her professional projects on wattpad.com. Instead, she created an account under a pseudonym that she uses to share autobiographical journal. Sourced from wattpad.com, 2013. 32
    33. 33. Odette‟s publishes a private journal under a pseudonym in 2011 She prefers using this to a physical journal, as the digital one is under a pseudonym, so it ‘cannot be linked to her’ (Int1, 2011, R5). She originally used to write her journal in ‘actual books’ and she was not completely herself as she knew someone might find it. As it is under a different name online, she believes it is highly unlikely that someone will find it. As a result, she is more at peace using a medium where she feels she can share her ‘deepest and darkest secrets’. (Int1, 2011, R12). Most of the work she does on Wattpad is on her journal. Although she does not use it for feedback, she does ‘feel that someone is there’. She also believes that people would not typically want to give an author feedback on their journal. She remarked that ‘No one has really commented, although they can’. 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 33
    34. 34. Odette‟s publishes a private journal under a pseudonym in 2011 She has also used Wattpad to put up a story that she did not plan on publishing, as she had taken its idea and changed it into a script. She did upload a second draft of one of her fantasy novels, but under a different pseudonym, and entered a poem into a Wattpad competition. Although Wattpad affords social network functionality, Odette has not made friends on the service. She only has one friend on it, who does not know it is a presence by Odette. She believes that the service is far more popular in USA, where it is like a ‘group of friends’. By contrast, she does not really communicate with other users, unless they tell her that her work is really good. ‘Wattpad is less communication than expressing yourself. People like to be appreciated; if people like your work that's cool. Having your work online also looks cool.’ (Int1, 2011, R10). ✔ Interest powered Peer-supported Academically orientated Contexts for learning ✔ Shared-purpose ✔ Production-centered ✔ Openly networked Experience of learning ✔ Learning happens by doing ✔ Everyone participates ✔ Challenge is constant ✔ Everything is interconnected Design principles ✔ Increasing accessibility to knowledge and learning ✔ Fostering engagement and self-expression ✔ Expanding social supports for interests ✔ Expanding diversity and building capacity New media amplification
    35. 35. While “Vince” uses the same genuine identity across the sites he uses, Odette uses pseudonyms for her extramural ones and she has separated her writing interests from her career-related acting/modelling online presences. She has a much smaller footprint than Vince; a 2013 search reveals presences on Facebook, a LinkedIn profile which describes her as a model represented by ‘L'Agence TKN Models’ agency and a Pinterest accounts. Divisions between the online presences Odette uses Sourced from wholebangshoot.co.za, 2013. Sourced from pinterest.com, 2013. 2013/06/28 35
    36. 36. Reflections from the Center for Educational Technology, UCT • Media Studies students using online services can develop their careers outside traditional formal environments. • Academics can capitalize on this more in their curriculum: they can help interested students take the initiative with services like these. Hopefully this can help students get jobs – proof of what they produced serving as an „online CV‟s. • As the technology is readily available for university students, differentiation through creative production (versus consumption) becomes increasingly important. Students should be encouraged to participate in forums that enable co- and extra-curricular media production. • Students must be taught about copyright: „The thing is have not checked it (copyright) out. I have been just like „Wow - writing site!‟, BAM! throw it on there. And because there are so many people, I assume that copyright means you get to keep your own work. Especially, because you can actually sell your work through the site.‟ (Int2, 2011, R37).2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 36
    37. 37. Thanks for your time. Please follow me on Twitter and view my blog at www.travisnoakes.co.za for updates… • Slideshare presentation • Online portfolio „lessons‟ • Research updates • Nvivo advice • Media 2013/06/28 @travisnoakes ICEL (2013) presentation 37

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