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Ten lessons in digital scholarship


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10 lessons relating to digital scholarship, using 10 videos to illustrate them

Published in: Education, Technology

Ten lessons in digital scholarship

  1. Digital scholarship10 lessons in 10 videos
  2. Book
  3. Definition
  4. <Alternative title> 10 things I’ve come to believe afterthinking about the impact of technology for a few years, accompanied by 10 tenuously connected, and sometimes amusing, videos
  5. Lesson 1: It‟s not just for geeks• YouTube clip -
  6. But it‟s also about:• Knowledge sharing• Knowledge creation• Networking• Generating ideas• Communicating• Democratisation of learning
  7. Aren‟t those all scholarly activities?
  8. Sir Martin Rees:“ archive transformed the literature ofphysics, establishing a new model forcommunication over the whole of science. Farfewer people today read traditional journals.These have so far survived as guarantors ofquality. But even this role may soon be trumpedby a more informal system of quality control,signaled by the approbation of discerningreaders”
  9. So there‟ssomething going on here, beyond just geeks
  10. The Boyer view of scholarship• Discovery• Integration• Application• Teaching
  11. Lesson 2: Researchers are caught in a dilemma• YouTube clip
  12. But researchers aren’t keen“frequent or intensive use is rare, and some researchers regard blogs, wikis and other novel forms of communication as a waste of time or even dangerous” Harley et al (2010) “We found no evidence to suggest(Proctor, Williams and Stewart (2010) that “tech-savvy” young graduate students, postdoctoral scholars, or assistant professors are bucking traditional publishing practices” Carpenter et al describe researchers as „risk averse‟ and „behind the curve in using digital technology‟
  13. Is it tenure?“The advice given to pre-tenure scholars was consistent across all fields: focus on publishing in the right venues and avoid spending too much time on public engagement, committee work, writing op- ed pieces, developing websites, blogging, and other non-traditional forms of electronic dissemination”
  14. Is it caution?Waldrop 2008 (on blogging)““Its so antithetical to the way scientists are trained," Duke University geneticist Huntington F. Willard said... The whole point of blogging is spontaneity--getting your ideas out there quickly, even at the risk of being wrong or incomplete. “But to a scientist, thats a tough jump to make,” says Willard. “When we publish things, by and large, weve gone through a very long process of drafting a paper and getting it peer reviewed.”
  15. Is it habit?Kroll & Forsman“Almost all researchers have created a strong network of friends and colleagues and they draw together the same team repeatedly for new projects…Everyone emphasizes the paramount importance of interpersonal contact as the vital basis for agreeing to enter into joint work. Personal introductions, conversations at meetings or hearing someone present a paper were cited as key in choosing collaborators.”
  16. <A tension between potential and context>
  17. Lesson 3: Interdisciplinary is the network• YouTube clip -
  18. New economicsInterdisciplinary used to be Costly DifficultyNow it‟s Cheap Easy
  19. New cultural normsWhat are the cultural norms of blogging?• a willingness to share thoughts and experiences with others at an early stage;• the importance of getting input from others on an idea or opinion;• launching collaborative projects that would be very difficult or impossible to achieve alone;• gathering information from a high number of sources every day;• control over the sources and aggregation of their news;• the existence of a „common code‟: a vocabulary, a way to write posts and behaviour codes such as quoting other sources when you use them, linking into them, commenting on other posts and so on;• a culture of speed and currency, with a preference to post or react instantaneously; and• a need for recognition – bloggers want to express themselves and get credit for it.(Le Muir 2005)
  20. How ‘sticky’ are these cultural norms?
  21. Lesson 4: We’re all broadcasters nowPublic engagement used to look like this:YouTube clip -
  22. Now looks like this:YouTube clip -
  23. A long tail content production system Code Lectures/Teaching contentResearch papersDebate Ideas Conferences Data
  24. Digital outputs• Low cost (free?)• Small but unpredictable audience• Open• No compromise• High reuse potential• Different distribution
  25. Lesson 5: Teaching in an attention economy• YouTube clip -
  26. • Pedagogy of scarcity? • Lecture – one to many • Library • Instructivism/didactic
  27. would a pedagogy of abundance look like?
  28. • Content is free• Content is abundant• Content is varied• Sharing is easy• Social based• Connections are „lite‟• Organisation is „cheap‟• Crowdsourcing• Network is valuable
  29. Do we need different skills to compete in an attention economy?
  30. Lesson 6: Rethink research• YouTube clip -
  31. Start a journal today!
  32. Invent an app today!
  33. Interrogate data today!
  34. Heppell (2001) “we continually make the error of subjugating technology to our present practice rather than allowing it to free us from the tyranny of past mistakes”
  35. Lesson 7: New skills will be required• YouTube clip -
  36. • Video• Networks• Data visualisation• Analytics• Writing for online• Managing online identity
  37. <Do we need to be taught these skills?>
  38. Lesson 8: It’ll impact even if you ignore it• YouTube clip -
  39. Conferences• Amplified• Online• Backchannel
  40. The new conference archive
  41. Alternative formats• Barcamp• Pre-presentation• Voting• Produce something
  42. Lesson 9: It’s about alternatives• YouTube clip -
  43. Alternatives• Communication• Publishing models• Research methods• Networking
  44. The following are not dead:• VLEs• Peer review• Universities• Teaching• Books
  45. But they are operating in a different ecosystem
  46. Lesson 10: Don’t focus just on risk• YouTube clip -
  47. • Doomed - were all destined to become stupid, dysfunctional & lessened by the technology eg Carr• Marooned - we are placing technology in too powerful a position and dehumanising ourselves in the process eg Lanier• Entombed - the more we communicate, the more alone and isolated we are becoming eg Turkle
  48. Tversky and Kahneman: We give risk/loss more weight
  49. James Boyle:“We are very good at seeing the downsidesand the dangers of open systems, openproduction systems, networks of openness... Those dangers are real… we are not sogood at seeing the benefits and theconverse holds true for the closed system.”
  50. To recap1. It‟s not just for geeks2. Resolve the researcher‟s dilemma3. Interdisciplinarity is in the network4. We‟re all broadcasters now5. Teaching in an attention economy6. Opportunity to rethink research7. New skills will be required8. It‟ll impact even if you ignore it9. It‟s about alternatives10. Don‟t focus just on risk
  51. <polite applause><and now – disagree>
  52. Links ‘n’ stuff• Videos:• Twitter: @mweller• Blog:• Book: