Had a really enjoyable and fruitful discussion with students, alumni and industry members at this event, about 35 people in total, the talk was part of Enterprise week at UAL, there was lots of interest and ideas for DIAL.
Discussion: How can industry and educational institutions collaborate around Open Education Resources?
Lots of issues were identified: How do student’s, Alumni and industry use online media effectively to communicate so they can form sustainable collaborations and support networks?
Logging into communities of practice:
Students were sceptical about using the LDAP logging in system at UAL (allowing read/write access to just UAL students and staff and read only or less to ‘outsiders’) they saw it as being very restrictive to their development in regards to communicating with a wider field including alumni and industry connections.
Showtime was highlighted by a student as having a good system for keeping graduates connected with UAL after they leave, the logging in system allows graduates updating content after they leave college for as many years as they want. Graduates have their Showtime profile for as long as they like! They can edit, upload new work -just need student ID & password, students would like to see this type of logging in system integrated into future UAL web projects.
Supporting communities before and after you graduate:
Members of alumni present at the meeting also expressed dissatisfaction with not being able to communicate with UAL after they leave. Graduates saw the point in which they leave the course as the time when they need the most support and connections with their past study and their future professional careers.
Current students said they think some students are maybe less interested in careers whilst they are studying they just want to study, others said that they are really interested in careers advice and contacts with industry and past graduates. They just wish they were more exposed to industry and practice whist they were learning. Some student described the amount of attention in this area as being as little as one day CV workshop.
Students and graduates would like a space to communicate together a social space similar to Facebook but not like LinkedIn, somewhere in-between. Graduates have a lot of information and sound advice they could easily and willingly communicate to current students given the right forum/platform.
There is a strong feeling coming through from current students and graduates that the time on their courses is not supporting the integration into practice they say their courses are geared up to teaching course specific information and not much emphasis or link to practice and professional practice or what you do in the real world.
One student remarked about the list of benefactors and corporate supporters listed on the wall in the foyer downstairs in Holborn. How are these Industry affiliates introduced on ground level, what is the affiliation?
Personal spaces, content management and identity
Students would like more information and guidance in developing their own personal unique web environments, they like to use institutional and social tools but they would also like to be able to develop their own websites personal websites, they would like this integrated into the study as preparation for professional practice.
There was concern from students about putting content on institutional websites and leaving college and not being able to remove that content if they wished as they wouldn’t have access to the site any more
There was a discussion about this and the implications of posting content that is creative commons licensed where that content cannot be recalled if it’s been put out into the world for others to take and use and re-purposed
There is a need and interest from students in trying to encourage industry into everyday student practice how do we do this is the question we asked?