Books, gardens and streams

A really great bunch of Edtech women have done a lot of work  with very little visibility from which femedtech is emerging – slowly. We have created connections with each other and explored how we can make space for people in education and technology to support each other.

from Pocket

Tweets Deleted

I’m deleting all my old tweets. I’m deleting all my old tweets and will delete them on an ongoing basis – every tweet older than three months.

from Pocket

This blog post by Audrey Watters caught my eye after seeing her Edinburgh talk and it really brought home just how serious people are beginning to take having their data out on the open web. The reason for the deletion activity given by Audrey is:

I am growing increasingly uncomfortable about the way in which our historical data is weaponized online. Tweets are particularly susceptible to this – they’re particularly easy to decontextualize.

This is a perfect example of the necessity of context and made me wonder how all of the items in my Lifestream would look in isolation.

Tweet: Personalised Learning, Gardner Campbell interview


Having come across this video by chance, it really spoke to me regarding my themes of connections and student data. During the first section of this interview Gardner Campbell speaks of how personalised learning is when your teacher really knows you. The difficulty being how to scale this ‘thick, rich experience‘ up to hundreds of students.

One possible answer is to ’empower the individuals to scale their own meetings on the network’ and here the meaning of ‘meeting’ is ‘spaces in which humans encounter each other in particularly rich meaningful ways‘.

This desire for connection is something that the web was built for. Yet Gardner asks ‘Is higher ed ready to tap in, in very meaningful, deep ways to students dispositions to connect?‘.

So why the continued resistance? Why the avoidance to teach and integrate communication processes effectively online? Again and again the response to blended or distance learning is to create resources, put them online and let the students work through. The culture mountain is tall and we are still near the bottom as a sector.

Liked on YouTube: Professor Sian Bayne – Digital Learning Research Symposium 2016

via IFTTT, YourTube

I attended this talk at Dublin City University in November 2016 and thinking about the course content nearing the end of our stream lead me to revisit it and Sian’s paper from block 1. The topics covered arose from the Digital Education manifesto and reminded me of how we can look to the future whilst still weaving in the human.



This Tweet caught my eye as it was by someone who is going to delivering a keynote at an institutional event in April and the Tweet prompting the comment is added below. This is relevant for my human thread in that it isn’t the technology that is the worry it is our implementation of it, and whether or not it is for the good of the people.

Comment on LARC learning analytics report 13/03/17 by cthomson

Hi Jeremy, my annotations were an attempt to critically consider the data that was gathered yet not actually used, as well as what was used. So in answer to your question I think context could be measured to some extent without more sophisticated analytics.

For example, if the report had considered my weekly average with the class weekly average (rather than the displayed course average) then it could have acknowledged ‘something’ going on across the class. So the low numbers would look less stark against the class numbers for each week.

Going a step further by combining this with the data that it was one week before the end of the course it could have provided supportive feedback such as “Congratulations, you are nearing the end of course, keep up the good work. You may be finding it difficult to stay motivated at this point but don’t forget to login/join conversations for the last week – it may help with your assignments(exams).”

Essentially, flipping the existing data into supportive encouragement rather than demotivating ….

from Comments for Clare’s EDC blog

TAGSExplorer: Interactive archive of twitter conversations from a Google Spreadsheet for

from Pocket

I really enjoy creating these visual representations of social networks – I try to focus on the connections and not the ‘top’ quantitative data. Knowing that the software is open and free for all to use also highlights the community feel to the process and Martin Hawksey, the creator, always welcomes interaction. A true example of online community.

LARC learning analytics report 13/03/17

from Dropbox


It seemed only fitting to include my LARC report for the week after discussions around learning analytics. I have annotated it briefly with some notes but it definitely serves the purpose of highlighting the need for context. Without any context it would baffle an outsider, showing a poor level of social interaction, engagement or attendance.

A quick overview is that it was week 9 of a ten week course and two assignments were looming in my mind. I was focused on working on my learning challenge for the first of these and prioritised this along with reading and planning my writing. None of this was captured in the ‘numbers’. It also didn’t compare the week with my fellow classmates but to the course average which meant there was no direct comparison. This might have served to show some of the context as many of the others would be generating similar reports for the same week.

Leaders and Monitors: The best and the worst of education technology

Last week I attended the Holyrood Connect Learning Through Technology event where I saw a rather jawdropping demonstration of the very best and very worst that education technology has to offer.

from Pocket

I posted this blog post in the Tweetorial as well as embedding it here as it highlights the grave need to call out software providers to consider the ethics around people’s data and stop privileging the surveillance as a selling point. It is yet again a ‘because we can’ function and Lorna Campbell demonstrates that the voice of reason may be a small voice in the dark. This all seems to resonate with the general direction of our discussions this week and the reality of a surveillance society, framed to us a method of keeping us safe.