Reflections on 2015/16

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As we move towards a new academic year, I’ve been reflecting on The Scholarship Project at HCA and our partner colleges. We ended July on a ‘high’, following an amazing Summer Show at HCA and still warm from our enjoyment of the AoC HE Research Conference and the people we met and the things we learned. I ended my year on another high after a meeting with the fabulous Deborah (our partner lead at Gloscol and being shown around Bristol School of Art by Jo (our partner lead at Sgloscol). More on both in my next post, including the visual narrative we captured at Bristol School of Art which might provide clues as to how the praxis-led learning space looks.

From my perspective, I know I’m also very lucky to work with creative staff at HCA who have jumped on board the project and explored how research can fit within their teaching and artistic practice. I’ve had some amazing conversations in the last six months and am the richer for them.

 

We now have a strong team of staff engaged in diverse research projects and attending conferences. We celebrated this in an end-of-term ‘research warming lunch’, with the lovely addition of Celia Rose Jackson, who had popped up from her University in Cardiff to discuss digital learning. It was great to meet Celia face to face and find out about her plans for next year.

The conversation went on for two hours after the lunch and we’re starting to explore ways to take that team aspect further so that our research can have a real impact on student outcomes and our personal journeys.

During Semester 2 a Student Scholarship team informally formed and ‘bonded’ as we worked at the cutting edge of teaching practice, using digital social media to explore complex questions as part of connected classes. And even post-graduation they can’t escape! One of my first jobs in September will be to email a team of alumni so they can come back (for another lunch) and we’ll be working together to devise a mini-curriculum of cclasses to support our (now L5) dissertation students. Thank-you to all students involved in the project. A very informal snapshot of us working hard below:

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My next blog post will look forward, but finally two questions:

How important is it to have purposed scholarly physical spaces and what are their digital equivalents?

How can we facilitate the creation of scholarly spaces within a busy modular curriculum?