Future Learners CETIS event

December 13, 2012 at 3:13 pm Leave a comment

The Future Learners event on Tuesday run by JISC CETIS and University of Nottingham was fascinating.  It was great to have so many people in such similar spheres in the same room as was made particularly evident as each of the people as they came up to give their lightning talk noted how the scene had been set nicely for what they were about to say.

Not that the lightning talks were particularly similar: there was everything from board games, to conceptual issues around individuals vs the models they are asked to fit in, to specifics about current learner technology projects and thoughts about the potential for the future.  What mostly seemed to become the theme of the day (I think slightly unfortunately) was Open Badges.  Not that I’m not interested, I think they have a lot of potential and I’m looking forward to hopefully getting involved in some badge work soon, but after seeing the scope of what kind of things are going on it was a pity to have so much of the day reduced to just badges.  On the other hand I now have a whole stack of links to look up about all these interesting things.

Open Badges were a big part of the day and I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who was thinking of them in terms of computer game achievements!  As a World of Warcraft player this kind of approach is definitely familiar (9820 achievement points and counting!) and from experience I definitely know it can make you do things you never would have considered doing before.  I particularly liked the way Doug linked it to hexagonal thinking rather than the purely linear bronze, silver, gold, but I can’t help but wonder if modelling thinking on 2D geometric shapes is a bit limiting.  I think that there were definitely people in the room having trouble breaking their ideas down into small enough chunks to make the badges work: proof that there is a real life application for gathering achievements! (I can dream…)

I have to say I hope there are more of these kind of interest group conferences.  Apparently they used to be relatively common – would be nice to see them take off again.

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Entry filed under: Conference, JISC CETIS, Learning Technology, Open Badges, University of Nottingham.

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