Pulling it all together with the Design Studio

A key theme at the joint programme meeting last week was “curriculum challenges.” Helen Beetham’s session focused on some of the key challenges in curriculum design and development and on how the set of curriculum challenges, derived from project reporting has not only provided one navigation path for the Design Studio but also provided a way to aggregate and contextualise resources.

The current set of challenges in the Design Studio are:

• Innovation and transformation
• Stakeholder Engagement
• Engaging Employers
• Employability
• Flexible curriculum
• Representing the curriculum
• Widening participation
• Student numbers
• New learners
• Learning Experience
Each of the pages provides a high level overview of the area, and links to projects/resources relevant to each topic. These will grow as more resources are shared. Of course this list is not definitive and hopefully it will grow/ be revised overtime.

The Design Studio can also be used as a way to collate and present resources (both from the Design Studio and beyond). Helen explained how she used it to create (in a very short space of time) a page of resources as a basis for a presentation she gave at this year’s ALT-C.

One of the main aims of the Design Studio is to provide context for resources, and to try to address the perennial problem of sharing resources from JISC projects. It was heartening to hear from both the Universities of Hertfordshire and Westminster on their experiences of using the Design Studio. The fact that project outputs are available as part of a national site has proved very useful to Gunter Saunders and the MAC project at Westminster in getting engagement for the project with their senior management team. They were impressed that the work was part of a national, JISC funded resource.

So, the Design Studio can also be seen as an alternative gateway to projects outputs for a variety of stakeholders. Over the coming months it is going to become increasingly important for the sector to be able to share good practice, the impact of innovation and the use of technology in teaching and learning. So let’s try and use the Design Studio as a means to do just that.

Some future enhancements I can see of being of use to the Design Studio are around the use of rss to both pull in and push out updates. Also I can see increasing potential for linking other JISC programme outputs – particularly from the OER programme. But I (and the rest of the support team) would be really interested to hear other thoughts too.

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