Mark Williams ~ Senior Learning Designer
Natasha Huckle and Mark Williams were excited to host the Learning Design Cross Institutional Network this year at the Open University campus in Milton Keynes. With support from Jim Harris (University of Northampton) and Simon Walker (UCL) they identified themes for exploration and called out for learning designers across the network to present keynotes and workshops. This is what happened!
Hosting the LD CIN
It was the turn of the OU to host the Learning Design Cross Institutional Network on 27th July. And it was great to bring a range of institutions onto our campus as well as welcoming our online attendees. The aim of the network is to create a less formal occasion, a gathering rather than a conference, as a way of sharing practice and resources. It seems incredibly relevant to have such a space to communicate, because our work is never carried out in isolation. As learning designers, we are constantly researching ideas and theories whilst working within our own teams to implement them most successfully.
Continue reading “The Learning Design Cross Institutional Network: Creating a space for Learning Design discussions”
James Openshaw and Paul Astles ~ Learning Designers
This article is the first of a two-part reflection about our collective experience at the EDEN 2023 conference in Dublin, Ireland and the EAUC conference 2023 in Bath, England. Alongside our shared experience and takeaways from those events this blog post will also include an update about the work going on in the Open University Learning Design Team in relation to sustainability and where we are heading next.
Before we get to the exciting stuff about our own work let’s look back at our personal highlights and takeaways from the most recently attended conferences. Continue reading “Sustainability: Our journey to connect colleagues with non-tokenistic action in the design process”
Mary Simper ~ Learning Designer
The Learning Design team at the OU has been exploring assessment practices, which has led to some rich discussions on accessibility, student choice, learning outcomes and authenticity. Discussions around authentic assessment have led us to think about how we can design assessments, well… more authentically!
Let’s start with an analogy…
Imagine being given a recipe for the best brownie in the world. Wouldn’t you want to bake and taste the brownies? This is called a taste test and it gives bakers the opportunity to experiment before selling products.
Similarly, authentic assessment provides students with a taste test where they mix, measure, and stir ingredients, applying methods to create a final product. A key stage is reviewing how well the process worked and this is akin to reflection, a major component of authentic assessment.
Now that we’re all hungry for brownies, here’s a more concrete definition: Continue reading “Beyond the “real world”: exploring authentic assessment design”
Eleanor Moore ~ Learning Designer
June is Pride Month and here at The Open University, we have a packed calendar of events exploring diverse perspectives and themes of inclusion. One of the first was an online seminar led by Dr Jessica Gagnon of Manchester University and Dr Marco Reggiani of Strathclyde University.
Jessica and Marco delivered an interesting presentation on how visibility is perceived and navigated by LGBT+ academics and PhD students in STEM, with a focus on how multiple axes of oppression impact people and groups who are marginalised and historically excluded. They interviewed 82 people, including 24 LGBT+ individuals, as part of their study. In summing up the key findings of their research, it was clear that emerging themes resonated with seminar participants as people shared their experiences of navigating the complex world of being visible as an LGBT+ person. Continue reading “Kicking off Pride Month at the OU: exploring LGBT+ visibility in STEM”