Thursday, March 31, 2011

Pedagogy, Andragogy and Heutagogy

My presentation on "Learning Commons Technology" went well at the 2nd Annual Learning Commons Development and Design Forum, here in Brisbane. It happened that many of the examples of good design I used were detailed in other presentations by library staff and is some cases by the architects of those buildings.

Dr. Ken Fisher Associate Professor, University of Melbourne talked after my presentation to the Learning Commons Forum. This worked well, as while I showed examples of learning commons I did and did not like, he provided a theoretical framework to say why the spaces did and did not work.

Ken mentioned CDIO: Conceive, Design, Implement, Operate developed for engineering education. This appeared to be a hi-tech interpretation of studio based trainings, as popularised for architects by the Bauhaus.

Also Ken mentioned Heutagogy, a term for self-determined learning.

Ken showed a diagram from University of Melbourne campus research collaboration analysis. This showed which staff worked together, based on names on joint papers. This is similar to the analysis used law enforcement use to identify relationships between members of organised crime. It would be interesting to apply this to traffic analysis of email and phone calls (as used by military intelligence). This could show what less formal collaborations there are across campus.

Ken showed the web site for Pen State University which accommodates on and off campus students. He saw this as a good thing. I would prefer to support students who may be full or part time, on or off campus, or overseas at some point in time. The range of facilities would be made available to all the students and then they could choose what they need.

Ken then discussed the University of Adelaide, which is on the edge of the Adelaide CBD. The campus is gradually expanding into the CBD and evolving a vibrant "Chinatown". As a result the student union building is not on the edge of the campus, rather than in the middle. The university is adding satellite learning hubs. Hughes court at the university will have a glassed roof and the top floor cut through to make a mezzanine. This reminded me of the UoC learning centre.

Ken showed a pedagogy space map, which is the floor plan of a building with areas identified for different learning styles.

University of Massachusetts Amherst has detailed research on use of learning spaces. This applies Ken's view of evidence based design.

I would have liked to hear more on studio work.

ps: A less serious idea which came up over drinks the night before was the use of learning centre after hours. There is a shortage of student accommodation, so why not Murphy beds built in, so the students can live in the commons? ;-)

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