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Ariane König and Nancy Budwig: ISCN Working Group 3: Integration of research, learning, operations and civic engagement

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Ariane König and Nancy Budwig: ISCN Working Group 3: Integration of research, learning, operations and civic engagement

  1. 1. ISCN WG3 Integration of research, learning, operations and civic engagement Setting the scene Ariane König, Ph.D. Head of Sustainable Development Senior Researcher University of Luxembourg Nancy Budwig Clark University
  2. 2. WG3 Remit Overarching objective: • To explore the challenges and criteria for success of Universities developing innovative approaches to transformative learning by integrating research, campus operations, and/or civic engagement projects in education. Cross-cutting topis: -innovation; collaboration; metrics; scalability Deliverables? • A priority list of web-based teaching tools (issues and concepts) that can be shared across Universities • (and possibly volunteers to collaborate on in the academic year 2014/2015).
  3. 3. Agenda Part I. Innovative approaches to transformative learning - Cases 14.00 Welcome and introductions 14.10 University as stage for transformative learning (Ariane König, University of Luxembourg & Nancy Budwig, Clark University) 14.20 Student-perspectives on transformative learning opportunities (Ulrich Scharf, Rootability) 14.30 Integrated Sustainability Academia – University of Siena (Angelo Riccaboni, University of Siena) 14.40 Q&A and discussion
  4. 4. Agenda Part II: Co-creation of learning tools II.1. What are challenges and criteria for success of programmes for transformative learning? Include thoughts on the design of spaces in which the project took place.’ II.2. What are priority topics? What aspects of such tools might be scalable or transferable?’ II.3. Develop a prototype web-based tool by designing a home page: • range of functions • content requisites • learning approaches/tools to be mediated by the site • a self-evaluation space for learning and continued improvement of the tool III. Synthesis and closure
  5. 5. Some challenges to higher education in the face of complex sustainability problems
  6. 6. « Our whole education tends to only draw simple logical conclusions and defining obvious cause and effect relationships [which] have no existence in reality. In reality all is indirect effects, networks, connections and time delays. Our civilisation will succeed […] only if it acquires a far greater knowledge of systemic connections in complex systems. » On complexity and education Frederic Vester (2007). The Art of Interconnected Thinking. MCB publishing house. Frederic Vester
  7. 7. http://www.foodinfo.org.nz/blind-men-and-an-elephant/ Trying to address complex problems with disciplined science: Diverse disciplinary tribes lack a shared language or world views.
  8. 8. The method of scientific inquiry underlies learning Individual learning: acquiring the habit of mind of reflection and open inquiry. Learning by societies/collectives: relies on the same basic reflective process. The union of observation and memory is the heart of reflection. “Things gain meaning by being used in a shared experience or joint action”. Testing hypothesis by acting Developing ideas for (shared) hypothesis Careful observation of consequences Keep track of ideas, activities and observed consequences for reflection John Dewey Scientific inquiry is a planned, systematic, structured, self-critical process to create new knowledge
  9. 9. Comparing two cultures of learning Teaching matters most Transfer of information Efficiency (much and fast) Is given by teacher Standardised testing Understand defined cause- effect relationships Learning environments matter most Action oriented development process Personal transformation Is constructed and negotiated Self-evaluation + critical support Emergence of new knowledge from interaction with learning environments Process: Endpoint: Meaning: Assessment: View of learning: Transmissive learning: Transformative learning:
  10. 10. Reconciling tensions along three dimensions • How can we collaboratively see alternative futures for complex systems? • How do we know what the relevant facts are? Abstract vs. Situated knowledge – local adaptation of information from the web is easily said… We need platforms for social learning, selection and adapation of universal technologies for local cirucmstnaces. • How can we embrace conflicting interests and expertise? Sustainability as a normative concept with a moral dimension in a pluralist society…
  11. 11. Learning: Tools and environments
  12. 12. Human Development as a Social Process 1. Gaining expertise: beyond learning facts: practice based approaches involve studying how students move from novice to expert knowledge through participation in authentic contexts 2. Phases of development: learning doesn’t happen in a moment. It is a process with changing roles of different kinds of others over time (experts and peers)
  13. 13. 3. The Role of Tools, Artifacts, and Technology Tools and artifacts can guide the emergence of learning, avoiding top down processes by guiding the emergence of self and peer led learning Technology has been shaking up our thinking about Learning and provides innovative alternatives to expert led lectures.
  14. 14. 4. Learning environments matter • Nancy – on bounded environments and how learning can happen at boundaries • The net as a bounded environment
  15. 15. What role might shared MOOCS play? One possibly approach (suggested by Constanza et al.) Online courses • analytical • tool-based Synthesis courses • face-to-face, • on-the-ground • focused on solving real world problems Practice: • Critical thinking • Apply tools • Communicate to diverse audiences
  16. 16. II.1. What are challenges and criteria for success of programmes for transformative learning? Include thoughts on the design of spaces in which the project took place.’
  17. 17. II.2. ‘What are priority topics that transformative learning tools should be developed for? What aspects of such tools might be scalable or transferable?
  18. 18. II.3. Design of a web-based teaching tool Develop a prototype for a web-based tool: In designing the home page, participants will consider a. the range of functions this web-tool should have b. content requisites for the topic to be addressed, and c. learning approaches/tools d. a self-evaluation space on the site to ensure learning and continued improvement of the tool
  19. 19. III. Synthesis, conclusion, and next steps for 2014/2015  Each group presents in five minutes  Synthesis and conclusions  Next steps: If all goes well we may have emergence of volunteer teams to develop some tools over the academic year 2014/2015.
  20. 20. Back up slides
  21. 21. Humans as originators or recipients Industrial society Primary waste products Areas of affected environme nt Society Economy Environment Solar system A complex nested system ……consists of a number of distinct parts that co-ex a specific dynamic arrangement. Parts of a system may also form a system or a sub-system in themselves. Interdependencies between drivers of change are of interest. Frederic Vester (2007). The Art of Interconnected Thinking. MCB publishing house.
  22. 22. 4. Learning in the anthropocene “Learning is to enhance one’s own capacities to produce the results one truly wants to produce. This process is akin to understanding and engaging in society embedded in its environment in a complex living system and understand its patterns and act upon that understanding.” Senge, P. 1990. The fifth discipline. MIT Press. Peter Senge, Director, MIT Centre for Organisational Learning
  23. 23. Sustainable education aims for ‘3rd order’ learning 1st order Transmissive learning Within accepted boundaries Information-based Learning about consequences of actions No change 3rd order Transformational learning Ventures outside boundaries Question underlying values Learning about alterantive ways of doing/ challenges values and norms that underpin our assumptions Radical change potential 6/17/2014 Adapted from Stephen Sterling (2001). Sustainable education. Schumacher papers. 2nd order Transitional learning Questions boundaries Critical reflection Learning about assumptions underlying actions Incremental change

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