The classroom, virtual or actual, as a studio

Apart from admiring the professional standard of Seely Brown’s clip I can also go part of the way in agreeing with him that learning is more effective if you are in a studio-type environment, where everyone’s work can be seen and critiqued by everyone else in the group. (and that is also an effective way of working in a non-teaching context as well, I suppose)

But collaborative working presupposes an assessment regime which is sympathetic to a shared product where it may not be so easy to clearly establish an individual’s specific contribution. I have some experience of my student group producing one joint piece of assessed work, and I certainly feel that some really effective learning takes place. I shall try Seely Brown’s approach where students are working towards individual end-products but critique each other’s work openly and throughout the process.

As ever with assessment, the secret is to strike a balance between formative and summative approaches; it is hard to produce an assessment regime which gets the best of both worlds. Maybe that is what H818 is aiming to do!


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