Week 11

Hi everyone! Hope week 11 is going well and that you are enjoying what is perhaps a quieter time of reflection. It has been an intense semester in EDC!

Firstly, remember that this two week period (weeks 11 and 12) is intended to give you time to round up your blog and to plan your final assignment. Do keep your lifestream going in the meantime, and remember to do your final lifestream summary before submission on Sunday the 9th of April.

James and I have already had productive exchanges and meetings with many of you about your final assignments, so do please get in touch for some one-to-one feedback on your ideas. Following James’s tweet yesterday we’re planning a post about the final assignment for Tuesday (4th) next week, so if you have any burning questions let us know!

In the meantime, do remember to read through the assessment information here, paying particular attention to the assessment criteria.

All the best for now!

Jeremy and James

Tweetorial begins!

Today we formally begin some intensive tweeting around the ideas raised in weeks 8 and 9 of the course – our block 3 Tweetorial! There has already been some great discussion in the past couple of days, so we’ll include that too! For now, keep an eye out for questions in the #mscedc twitter stream, and respond with any answers, comments or thoughts.

Welcome to Week 9 (part 1)!

Hi everyone, and welcome to week 9! This is a brief post from me to introduce the week, but also to promise a video, which will appear on Wednesday afternoon if all goes to plan.

Firstly, it has been fantastic to see everyone posting their algorithmic play: Google search, Amazon recommendations, Goodreads,  Advertising and search, and YouTube, to name a few! Fascinating to see the ways we are ‘reverse engineering’ these hidden technologies!

While much of our algorithmic play has looked at the web in general, this week we focus our attention on specific educational uses of algorithms, and the merging field of ‘learning analytics’ seems to be where this is happening most prominently. We have a video lecture and a journal article as this week’s core readings, but do also explore other resources for learning analytics.

Our activity this week is a ‘tweetorial‘, which will take place on Thursday and Friday: some intensive tweeting about learning analytics and algorithms! Keep an eye on the week 9 page for the questions, which James and I will also tweet.

Have a great week, more from me on Wednesday!

Welcome to week 3!


Thanks everyone for your work in the lifestream blog and your participation in the film festival – we hope you have found these approaches interesting and enjoyable during this early part of the course. In this final week of the Cyberculture block we want to spend more time exploring some of the ideas from the readings, within your blogs and also when we get together for our Google Hangouts (more information below).

You’ll have noticed that compared to other parts of the Digital Education programme, there are considerably fewer required readings in this course. Instead what we try and do is identify a small number of important pieces so that you can really try to get to grips with the ideas being put across. Hopefully by now you will have had a chance to do all the reading for this first block so that we can enjoy some really interesting and thoughtful conversation this week.

The first way we will do this in our Google hangouts this week. You only need to attend one of the three sessions that will be taking place. If you haven’t already signed up for a session please try and do so (details here: https://www.moodle.is.ed.ac.uk/mod/choice/view.php?id=38354) as soon as soon you so that we have an idea of how busy each session will be. In order to participate you need to set up a google account and send your details to Jeremy, so that you can be invited to the hangout. Details of timings and how to sign up for a session can be found here:http://edc17.education.ed.ac.uk/blog/2017/01/23/new-tutorial-slots-added/

Your engagement with the course readings can also contribute really positively to your lifestream blog and we’re already seeing examples of this happening. What we would encourage you to start doing is to be thinking about your lifestream content in relation to ideas in the readings and this block of the course more generally. For instance, if you include a link to an article about educational technology, try to think about the content in relation to ideas the article by Bayne (2014), and add some comments to the post as it appears in your blog. Similarly, if you include a cyborg image or video, think about comments that you can add which will critically connect the image with Miller’s (2011) work around the body and technology.

In the coming weeks we are going to take a more conversational approach within your blogs. We have offered a fair amount of guidance on how the lifestream and weekly summaries should work therefore we’re now going to switch our attention to discussing some of the different ideas in your blog. There will be more conventional feedback at the mid-point of the course.

Something new we would like to introduce this week – and this is in response to some of the content emerging in your lifestream blogs and also from suggestions for the film festival – is to introduce music to the course. If you are so inclined, why not think about whether particular songs can evoke or help us to explore some of the critical ideas we are exploring in this part of the course? In the same way that we explored ideas around cyberculture through film clips, can we try and achieve the same through music? If this is something that interests you, why not add songs to your lifestream (for instance through Spotify or YouTube) accompanied of course by a little metadata explaining its significance. Depending on how this works, at the end of the week we will pull your suggestions into a single playlist – a collaborative musical artefact in response to critical work around cyberculture!

New tutorial slots added

Due to popular demand, we’ve added some extra tutorial times for our week 3, 5, and 10 sessions! These are:

WEEK 3: Thursday 2nd February: 10am

WEEK 5: Wednesday 15th Feb: 10am

WEEK 10: Wednesday 22nd March: 10am

Each session will be limited to 8, so do please head over to the EDC Moodle page to choose your preferred option. Remember that you only have to attend one tutorial session in each of designated weeks. If you haven’t already, do send us a link to your Google plus page so we can add you to the Hangout!

Week 1…

We’re swiftly approaching the end of week 1, and it has been fantastic to see so much activity in your blogs, on Twitter (#mscedc), and in our first Togethertube tutorial on Tuesday.

Here are a few important points to remember as we wrap up the first week:

  • It is important to add a few notes to the individual lifestream items going into your blog. This shows that you’re reflecting on *why* the content is relevant to your thinking. Don’t just add a clip from Terminator 2, add a sentence or two explaining how it relates to your thinking about cybercultures in education.
  • Your end of week lifestream summary should reflect on the specific content of your lifestream, rather than being a general reflection on your participation in the course. Tell us about the individual items you’ve added – tweets, videos, images etc. – and how they come together to represent your week’s activity.
  • Commenting on each other’s blogs is a really important part of your participation, and gives you the chance to reflect more substantively on course themes (than, say, Twitter), and feeding this into your own lifestream (just make sure to set up an IFTTT applet for that)
  • You can also blog, it is not all just about tweets or You Tube videos!
  • Think of your lifestream as a canvas for your activity on the web, rather than simply a list of links. In other words, try to make sure that images, videos, or tweets are embedded into your lifestream entries. We want to see as much as we can within your WordPress blog. Any questions about IFTTT, let us know, or ask on Twitter! 

Have a great weekend!

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