Educators and learners are no longer limited to a specific curriculum and pre-approved textbooks. The internet offers easy access to diverse educational content from all over the world! Watch out though, there’s a caveat: not all open educational content is good educational content, and you have to decide for yourself what to feed your brain.
“Open Education wants to address and equalize the power dynamics between teachers and learners by empowering learners to essentially be ‘free agents’” says Renee Hobbs, Director of the Harrington School of Communications and Media. Prof. Hobbs identifies the three core skills you need to be an effective “free agent.”
Intellectual curiosity. Asking questions is a core media literacy competency that applies to open education and lifelong learning. Rather than passively learning, free agents seek out information and question everything they see or hear.
Good decision-making. There is an abundance of information and entertainment available and you only have so much time. “The ability to make good choices is essential in an attention economy,” says Prof. Hobbs. You need to decide which resources are the best for you.
Reflective creativity. Whether you are commenting, tweeting, writing or recording, you need to ask yourself what the consequences are of the content you create. “Am I really probing? Am I really investigating? Am I applying my unique position and place in the world to create something that reflects my lived experience?” suggests Prof. Hobbs. “The authenticity of that kind of creator is something we are really hungry for at this time at the beginning of the 21st century.”
If you want to develop your "free agent" skills, a worthwhile place to start is the recently published Web Literacy Standard from the Mozilla Foundation. It maps out the key competencies you need to effectively read, write, and participate on the web.
What motivates teachers to use media in the classroom? Recent research identifies 12 teacher motivation profiles.
Powerful Voices for Kids is a new project from the University of Rhode Island’s Media Education Lab that identifies 12 teacher motivations for using media in education. Published as a website and as a book, Powerful Voices for Kids also provides ideas and resources for educators tailored to each type of motivation.
Technology and media are ubiquitous in our lives, including the spaces where we teach and learn. Some of the pervasiveness of media happens inadvertently, but many educators intentionally use media content as part of their teaching practice. How they do so depends on their motivations, which differ from one teacher to another.
Professor Renee Hobbs, Director of the Harrington School of Communication and Media at the University of Rhode Island and co-founder of Powerful Voices for Kids, said, “I think that our work with educators across the K-12, college and informal learning contexts suggests that teachers use a variety of different criteria to evaluate the media content that they use in the classroom.”
Prof. Hobbs gave the example that a teacher trying to motivate and engage learners might select content with a “hook” that connects with the students’ personal lives or interests, while a teacher who wants to introduce learners to professional norms and academic knowledge would probably select media content based on the quality of the content.” There are 12 teacher motivation profiles such as the Trendsetter, the Techie, and the Watchdog. Educators can take an online quiz to find out their motivation profile.
The profiles are based on research conducted by Prof. Hobbs and German visiting scholar Silke Graf, who interviewed educators from the US and Germany at all different levels of education. According to Prof. Hobbs, “With the rapidly changing digital environment, teachers need to stay on the sharp edge of keeping their skills and their knowledge current. That means that teachers have to be motivated to be lifelong learners. We believe that when we can activate the heart of teachers’ passion for this work, we can do a better job of offering them professional development programs that are meaningful.”
Prof. Hobbs will give a keynote speech at the upcoming Media & Learning conference in Brussels, where she will discuss in more depth her findings on teachers’ motivations to use media for education. Registration for the conference is still open.
The organisers of the Media & Learning Conference, have announced their first line-up of keynote speakers: Beeban Kidron, Renee Hobbs, Sian Bayne and Aidan Chambers. The theme of this year's conference, which is supported by the MEDEAnet project, is Media Education and Literacy: Equipping Learners for Open, Creative Learning Futures.
This year’s event, taking place on 12-13 December in the Ministry Headquarters in Brussels, will feature Film Director Baroness Beeban Kidron who has spent the last 30 years working in feature film, television drama and documentary film and and is co-founder of the education charity FILMCLUB, the largest cultural programme in UK schools, with over 7,000 film clubs engaging over 220,000 children and young people each week.
She will be joined by Prof. Renee Hobbs who is an internationally recognised authority on digital and media literacy education. Renee is Professor and Founding Director of the Harrington School of Communication and Media at the University of Rhode Island, USA. As the Founder of the Media Education Lab she develops programs that advance media literacy education through scholarship and community service.
Dr. Sian Bayne is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Education whose research is focused on the many ways in which the digital changes and challenges education with a focus on distance education, higher education, MOOCs and museum learning.
The fourth keynote that was announced is Aidan Chambers, well known British author of children's and young-adult novels who has launched his own app Tablet Tales, with which he is beginning to explore the effect on his own work of writing for the iPad.
The conference theme is at the heart of what will be a unique programme exploring the role of creativity and innovation in education and training against the backdrop of dramatic change in how, where and what learners learn.
Media & Learning 2013 is organised by the Flemish Ministry of Education and Training and media company ATiT, in collaboration with the European Commission Directorate-General for Education and Culture.
Media & Learning 2013 is targeted at practitioners and policy makers interested in exploring and discussing media supported learning at all levels of education and training.
Media & Learning 2013 is for all those interested in the latest developments, services and uses of media in education and training. Aimed at both policy makers and practitioners, the purpose of this annual event is to identify policies and initiatives that promote digital and media competence at all levels of education and training as well as to promote best-practice in the take-up and application of media in education and training.
On 22 November 2012 at 16h00 CET you can meet two award winners of the MEDEA Awards 2012 that were announced last Wednesday 14 November. During this one-hour webinar Petros Michailidis (Greece) and Catherine Loire (France) will briefly present their entry and describe how they have successfully used media to enhance the learning process in their specific circumstances. There are still places available and participation to this webinar is free but prior registration is required.
Petros Michailidis (5th Primary school of Alexandroupolis, Greece) will talk about the eTwinning project 'And the Oscar goes to ... ' for which he collaborated with Christelle Vouillot, Ecole Primaire de Rolampont in France and won the MEDEA Award for User-Generated Educational Media 2012. This collaborative project incorporates the way storytelling is used in movies in everyday teaching practice for subjects such as language learning, mathematics, social and science studies, art, English, ICT, as well as for learning attitudes like how to handle bullying. This project gives students the skills and competences to create their own videos on these subjects in collaboration with other countries. It gives learners an opportunity to learn to express themselves in other ways beside the traditional written and oral communication.
Catherine Loire (TICE, Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne University, France) will present the entry 'Quand la colère fait tomber les masques' by Université Paris 1 (France), which won the MEDEA Award for Professionally Produced Educational Media 2012. This 35-minute movie with a gripping story of a social conflict between an employee and the new management of a family owned company while becoming a large multinational. The movie shows the events from different angles: human resource management, employees' rights, conflict management, business ethics and corporate law. And in that way it is an interesting case study for Master Students in these areas, a case study that is much more effective and involving than it ever could be on paper.
After each presentation, participants will be given an opportunity to exchange experiences and to ask questions during a moderated online live chat discussion.
This webinar is aimed at teachers and trainers as well as representatives from educational ministries and professional educational media producers interested in finding out more about innovative practices in media-enhanced education and training.
Participation in these webinars is free but prior registration is required via an online form since the maximum number of participants for each webinar is 50. The link will be sent to you after registration as well as close to the event. As seats are limited, come early if you want to be sure to have a spot!
The webinars will be recorded and published online in the Media & Learning Resources Database.
For more information on webinars, please read 'What is a webinar?'.
The winners of the MEDEA Awards 2012 were announced during the MEDEA Awards Ceremony which took place on 14 November 2012 as part of the Media & Learning Conference in the Flemish Ministry of Education and Training headquarters in Brussels. Speaking at the awards, Mathy Vanbuel, Chairperson of the MEDEA Awards Committee, highlighted the fact that both winners have a really strong narrative element which highlights the importance of storytelling for learning. Discover their names here.
French entry 'Quand la colère fait tomber les masques' by is the winner of the MEDEA Professional Production Award and the entry And the Oscar goes to ... is the winner of the MEDEA User-Generated Award, a collaboration between two classes from 5th Primary school of Alexandroupolis in Greece and Ecole Primaire de Rolampont in France. This announcement was made during the MEDEA Awards Ceremony which took place on 14 November 2012 as part of the Media & Learning Conference in the Flemish Ministry of Education and Training headquarters in Brussels.
Speaking at the awards, Mathy Vanbuel, Chairperson of the MEDEA Awards Committee, highlighted the fact that both winners have a really strong narrative element which highlights the importance of storytelling for learning. “Narration is increasingly used to capture interest in the learning context, it is a way to keep learners motivated, to encourage them to press forward and to take a real interest in what is going on through their concern for what is happening to the characters in the stories that we tell. Everyone loves a good story, and nowhere is this more evident than in the MEDEA Awards this year.”
This year the Special Prize for European Collaboration was awarded to Historiana - Your Portal to the Past by EUROCLIO - European Association of History Educators, The Netherlands. The prize for Educational Media Encouraging Active Ageing, set up to coincide with the European Year of Active Aging and Solidarity between Generations was won by All that Jazz made by Fundación Universidad Carlos III, Spain.
Two additional prizes were awarded: the first, the Special Jury Prize was given to Flying Start made by the University of Leeds, UK. The second, winner of the audience favourite prize, was won by Schoolovision made by schools all over Europe. The other finalists who took part in the MEDEA Awards last night were: Il Girotondo del Tempo made by Hyperfilm srl, Italy; Moving Image Techniques by Christina dePian, Greece; and SignMedia by the University of Wolverhampton, UK.
This year the competition attracted 213 entries from 32 countries. In addition to the finalists, the Organising Committee also announced 15 entries that are Highly Commended.
Find out more about these winners, finalists as well as the 15 Highly Commended in the press release (PDF) and don't forget: the closing date for receipt of entries for MEDEA 2013 is 30 September 2013.
“When I make a film, it’s out of my head”: Expressing emotion and healing through digital filmmaking in the classroom
This article by Brian Bailey was published on Digital Culture & Education, volume 3, issue 2.
This article examines how adolescents are using digital video production in school to express emotions, deal with personal and community problems and even draw on their multimedia compositions as a form of healing. In this sense, youth are using literacy to help them to make sense of their lives while attempting to make changes within themselves and their communities.
The data for this paper comes from a two-year ethnographic study in two high schools. Field observations, interviews, video data, pre-production texts (storyboards, scripts, screen plays etc.) and student films were analyzed to understand what language and literacy look like when students use digital video production and distribution in school to tell stories.
Drawing on a New Literacy Studies theoretical framework, the author argues that the literacy practices in this study allow students to make sense of issues and emotions in their lives and cope with their life circumstances by showing their stories to real audiences both within and beyond their schools.
Das Online-Magazin DIGITAL LERNEN will Pädagogen, Eltern und Politiker ermuntern, die Integration digitaler Medien in Bildungseinrichtungen und zu Hause nachhaltig zu verbessern. Deshalb informiert es darüber, wie Medienkonzepte in Bildungseinrichtungen erarbeitet und funktionsfähig umgesetzt werden können, und wie der Einsatz von Internet und Computer als Werkzeuge den Unterricht bereichern können. Das Magazin ermöglicht einen Informationsaustausch aller Akteure im Bildungsbereich, von der Lehrkraft bis zum Bundestagsabgeordneten, damit jeder von den guten Ideen des anderen lernen kann.
A Pedagogy of Abundance or a Pedagogy to Support Human Beings? Participant Support on Massive Open Online Courses
This paper published at International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning Vol 12, No 7 (2011) examines how emergent technologies could influence the design of learning environments.
The paper examines the roles of educators and learners in creating networked learning experiences on massive open online courses (MOOCs). It proves that it is possible to move from a pedagogy of abundance to a pedagogy that supports human beings in their learning through the active creation of resources and learning places by both learners and course facilitators.
The 9 finalists for the 2012 Annual MEDEA Awards were announced on 22 October 2012.
The finalists are (in alphabetical order): All that Jazz by Fundación Universidad Carlos III (Spain), And the Oscar goes to ... by the 5th Primary school of Alexandroupolis (Greece), Flying Start by the University of Leeds (UK), Historiana - Your Portal to the Past by EUROCLIO - European Association of History Educators (The Netherlands), Il Girotondo del Tempo by Hyperfilm srl (Italy), Moving Image Techniques by Hill School (Greece), Quand la colère fait tomber les masques by Université Paris 1 (France), Schoolovision by Yester Primary School (UK) and SignMedia by the University of Wolverhampton (UK).
The overall winner will be announced during the MEDEA Awards Ceremony which takes place on Wednesday 14th November during the Media & Learning Conference 2012 in Brussels.
If you want to learn some more details, please, visist our press section.