Research Seminar Series

Time: Thursday, 6th February 2014, 11:00-12:00.
Location: Seminar Room THB-G010 (James Hardiman Library Extension)

Speaker: Catherine Cronin

Topic: Open education and digital identities

“I don’t think education is about centralized instruction anymore; rather, it is the process [of] establishing oneself as a node in a broad network of distributed creativity.”
- Joi Ito (2011)


This presentation will explore emerging open education practices and their effects not only on learning and teaching, but on our multiple and overlapping identities as networked scholars, educators, students, and citizens. We are in the early days of large-scale open education. The boundaries continue to blur between real and virtual spaces, formal and informal learning, educators and learners. Open, participatory and social media are enabling new ways of learning and new forms of education (MOOCs anyone?). While the traditional higher education model is focused on centralized expertise, the individual learner, and competition, higher education is currently engaged in the process, albeit unevenly, of moving towards more distributed expertise, facilitation of networked learners, and openness. This presentation will consider the concept of digital, networked identities in the context of open education, with a particular focus on us as educators and our interactions with students in both bounded and open online spaces.

Speaker bio: Catherine is academic coordinator of IT Online programmes and lecturer in Professional Skills in the BSc CS+IT programme. Catherine’s work focuses on online and open education, digital literacies, and social media in education. In addition to her teaching and research in HE, she works with schools and community groups exploring these areas. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in the area of open education and digital identity practices. She holds a B.Sc in Mechanical Engineering, M.Eng. in Systems Engineering, and M.A. in Women’s Studies where her dissertation topic was gender and technology.