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Creativity and learning
A bubble-and-squeak dish of elearning, creativity, innovation and design education
Curated by Clive Hilton
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Encouraging Creativity in Higher Education; The Experience of the Brighton Creativity Centre

The first part of this paper explores the issues raised by attempting to introduce creativity into the broader context of Higher Education (HE) where creativity is seen as important but its very nature involves risk and challenge to the status quo and
established systems. This is discussed in relation to the purposes of HE, and the call by Martha Nussbaum (1997) to ‘Cultivate Humanity’.

 

Traditional attitudes towards knowledge transfer by lecture, however, still pervade many disciplines and institutions. An accountancy-led view of education in HE tends supports the apparent efficiency of lecturing to large numbers. The commodification
of HE arguably changes the learner’s perception of the learning contract from an active engagement with learning to the passive purchase of a qualification in the HE market place, which can then be traded for a good (or better) job.

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MIT & Khan Academy Team Up to Develop Science Videos for Kids. Includes The Physics of Unicycling

MIT & Khan Academy Team Up to Develop Science Videos for Kids. Includes The Physics of Unicycling | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it

MIT is teaming up with Khan Academy (whose founder went to MIT and will deliver MIT’s commencement speech this spring), and together they will produce ”short videos teaching basic concepts in science and engineering” for K-12 students.

 

The videos will be produced by MIT’s ever-so-creative students themselves and then be made available through a dedicated MIT website and YouTube channel.

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UK to open up access to research

UK to open up access to research | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
Wikipedia's Jimmy Wales is to help the UK government make the academic research it funds freely available to all...

 

The decision will have major implications for the publishing industry.

Firms currently charge access to peer-reviewed papers covered in journals.

Science Minister David Willetts outlined details of the plan in an article in the Guardian newspaper ahead of a speech to the Publishers Association.

He noted that the state currently spent about £5bn a year funding university studies.

 

"Giving people the right to roam freely over publicly funded research will usher in a new era of academic discovery and collaboration, and will put the UK at the forefront of academic research," he said.

 

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Granny army teaches in the cloud

Granny army teaches in the cloud | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it

How Skype is connecting UK grannies with children thousands of miles away in India.No-one does love and encouragement better than a granny. Now that love is being spread across continents, as UK-based grandmothers extend their embrace to school children thousands of miles away in India.

 

Jackie Barrow isn't a granny yet but as a retired teacher she felt she might qualify for an advert in The Guardian newspaper calling for volunteers to help teach children in India.

 

She did and today, three years on, she is reading "Not Now Bernard" via Skype to a small group of children in the Indian city of Pune.

 

They love it and are engaged in the experience as she holds up an Easter egg to show them how children in the UK celebrated the recent holiday.

Advice and praiseThe Granny Cloud project is the brainchild of Prof Sugata Mitra, best-known for his hole-in-the-wall computer scheme which put basic PCs into some of the poorest parts of India.

 

The work is being supported by the School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences at Newcastle University, and MIT's iLab project.

 

 

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Saul Bass’ Oscar-Winning Animated Short Ponders Why Man Creates

Saul Bass’ Oscar-Winning Animated Short Ponders Why Man Creates | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
Maybe you already had a fascination with Saul Bass...

 

...you can round out your understanding of the man’s artistic sensibility by watching Why Man Creates (part one, part two), the animated film by Bass and his wife/collaborator Elaine which won the 1968 Academy Award for Documentary Short Subject. An eight-part meditation on the nature of creativity, the film mixes animation and live action, using Bass’ advanced repertoire of optical techniques, to look at the issues surrounding how and why humans have, throughout the history of civilization, kept on making things.

 

It begins with early hunters felling a beast and making a cave painting out of it. From that cave rises a tower built out of every major phase of human civilization: the wheel near the bottom, the pyramids somewhat higher up, the literal darkness of the Dark Ages as the camera rises higher still, ultimately capped by a heap of planes, trains, and automobiles.

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Incremental and Radical Innovation: Design Research versus Technology and Meaning Change - jnd.org

Incremental and Radical Innovation: Design Research versus Technology and Meaning Change - jnd.org | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it

ABSTRACT
We discuss the differences between incremental and radical innovation and argue that each results from different processes. We present several methods of viewing incremental and radical innovation. One is by examining the quality of product space, envisioning each product opportunity as a hill in that space where the higher one is, the better. Under this view, human-centered design methods are a form of hill climbing, extremely well suited for continuous incremental improvements but incapable of radical innovation. Radical innovation requires finding a different hill, and this comes about only through meaning or technology change. A second approach is to consider the dimensions of meaning and technology change as two dimensions and examining how products move through the resulting space. Finally, we show how innovation might be viewed as lying in the space formed by the dimension of research aimed at enhancing general knowledge and the dimension of application to practice.

 

We conclude that human-centered design, with its emphasis on iterated observation, ideation, and testing is ideally suited for incremental innovation and unlikely to lead to radical innovation. Radical innovation comes from changes in either technology or meaning. Technology-driven innovation often comes from inventors and tinkerers. Meaning-driven innovation, however, has the potential to be driven through design research, but only if the research addresses fundamental questions of new meanings and their interpretation.

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TED-Ed Launches Innovative Customized Learning Web Initiative

TED-Ed Launches Innovative Customized Learning Web Initiative | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
It's been a long time since anyone's done anything truly revolutionary when it comes to online video, but leave it to the folks at TED to bu...

 

Each video featured on the site is mapped, via tagging, to traditional subjects taught in schools and comes accompanied with supplementary materials that aid a teacher or student in using or understanding the video lesson. Supplementary materials include multiple-choice questions, open-answer questions, and links to more information on the topic.

 

But the most innovative feature of the site is that educators can customize these elements using a new functionality called “flipping.” When a video is flipped, the supplementary materials can be edited and the resulting lesson is rendered on a new and private web page. The creator of the lesson can then distribute it and track an individual student’s progress as they complete the assignment.

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Brain study reveals how successful students overcome math anxiety | KurzweilAI

Brain study reveals how successful students overcome math anxiety | KurzweilAI | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it

Using fMRI brain-imaging technology for the first time with people experiencing mathematics anxiety, University of Chicago scientists have gained new how some students are able to overcome their fears and succeed in math...

 

For the highly math-anxious, researchers found a strong link between math success and activity in a network of brain areas in the frontal and parietal lobes involved in controlling attention and regulating negative emotional reactions. This response kicked in at the very mention of having to solve a mathematics problem.

Teachers as well as students can use the information to improve performance in mathematics, said Sian Beilock, associate professor in psychology at the University of Chicago.

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Disruptive innovation — in education | KurzweilAI

Disruptive innovation — in education | KurzweilAI | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
For Anant Agarwal, MITx, the Institute’s new online-learning initiative, isn’t just a means of democratizing education.

 

A decade ago, MIT broke ground with its OpenCourseWare initiative, which made MIT course materials, such as syllabi and lecture notes, publicly accessible. But over the last five years, MIT Provost L. Rafael Reif has led an effort to move the complete MIT classroom experience online, with video lectures, homework assignments, lab work — and a grade at the end.

 

The development of such online-learning tools will be crucial to MITx’s expansion. “How do you put a chemistry lab online?” Agarwal asks. “We’re just getting started here. Figuring out how to tailor the platform for MIT’s many disciplines will require collaboration across all our schools.”

MITx is not just a tool for democratizing education; it’s also a tool for education research. “I want to disrupt how education is done,” Agarwal says — not just online but on campus as well.

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Coursera Raises $16 Million, Strikes Deal with 3 Universities, Adds Humanities Courses

Coursera Raises $16 Million, Strikes Deal with 3 Universities, Adds Humanities Courses | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
During the past two months, two ventures offering free MOOCS (Massive Open Online Courses) have spun out of Stanford. One is Udacity run by Sebastian Thrun.
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Grades 2.0: How Learning Analytics Are Changing The Teacher’s Role

Grades 2.0: How Learning Analytics Are Changing The Teacher’s Role | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it

According to Educause (PDF), learning analytics is “the use of data and models to predict student progress and performance, and the ability to act on that information”. It differs from other pedagogical theories because it focuses on the learner’s interaction with his or her learning environment.


Via Ana Cristina Pratas
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Repurposing E-Waste Into E-Learning - Core77

Repurposing E-Waste Into E-Learning - Core77 | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
Dand launched ThinkerToys, an initiative to solve these dual problems--massive amounts of electronic waste in landfills in the developing world, and a lack of educational resources for children in those countries. Thinker Toys picks up basic electronic equipment, like keyboards, mice and speakers, none of which need to be modified or brought back to factories. For now, Dand has been using Arduino but he plans to develop low-cost chips, called openTOYS, that make the project more scalable and accessible..
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The neuroscience of Bob Dylan's genius

The neuroscience of Bob Dylan's genius | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
How do we have insights, and where does inspiration come from?

 

Every creative journey begins with a problem. It starts with a feeling of frustration, the dull ache of not being able to find the answer. When we tell one another stories about creativity, we tend to leave out this phase of the creative process. We neglect to mention those days when we wanted to quit, when we believed that our problems were impossible to solve. Instead, we skip straight to the breakthroughs. The danger of telling this narrative is that the feeling of frustration – the act of being stumped – is an essential part of the creative process. Before we can find the answer – before we probably even know the question – we must be immersed in disappointment, convinced that a solution is beyond our reach. It's often only at this point, after we've stopped searching for the answer, that the answer arrives. All of a sudden, the answer to the problem that seemed so daunting becomes incredibly obvious.

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3ders.org - STEMulate Learning integrates 3D printing into classroom | 3D Printing news

3ders.org - STEMulate Learning integrates 3D printing into classroom | 3D Printing news | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
Kalani Hausman, an author, educator, InfoTech/InfoSec professional and researcher in high-performance computing launched an education-focused program: STEMulate learning through personalized 3D printed robotics.

 

This robotics course is designed to interest boys and girls in STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) by allowing them to pick the type of robot (bug, tank, hand, bipedal walker, etc) and color for the robot framework. Each student will then use common components (Arduino, servos, sensors) to build their robot rather than a standard bot that all will use.

 

This program is currently participating in the #SciFund Challenge on rockethub.com - You might find this research interesting, then help fuel this exciting project and become part of the STEMulate Learning effort.

 

MakerBot, the manufacturer of 3D Printer, is providing a dual-color Replicator from their next production run to the STEMulate Learning program. Besides, MakerBot is putting him in contact with 25+ schools that have MakerBots as part of their Education program to perform his research in educational settings.

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Harvard and MIT Create EdX to Offer Free Online Courses Worldwide

Harvard and MIT Create EdX to Offer Free Online Courses Worldwide | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
MIT has teamed up with its Cambridge neighbor, Harvard, to create a new non profit venture, EDX. To date, Harvard has barely dabbled in open education. But it’s now throwing $30 million behind EDX (M.I.T. will do the same), and together they will offer free digital courses worldwide, with students receiving the obligatory certificate of mastery at the end. The EDX platform will be open source, meaning it will be open to other universities..

 

Classes will begin next fall.

 

 

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Want to be More Creative? Science Suggests Stop Fretting Over Mistakes

Want to be More Creative? Science Suggests Stop Fretting Over Mistakes | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it

What’s going on in artists’ brains when they create?

 

A recent article in The Atlantic on MRIs pointed to a TED video by Charles Limb, a scientist who researches jazz musicians. “I’m just astounded,” he says, “How can this possibly be, how can the brain generate that much music, that much creativity, spontaneously?” It’s a good question: from jazz musicians to performance artists to live painters, artists and creative people constantly have to create in the moment. Many artists are brilliant at this. How is that possible?

 

It turns out that two things are happening: the part of your brain responsible for self-expression turns on. That makes sense. But then the part of your brain responsible for self-monitoring turns off. That means jazz musicians in the throes of improvised creation aren’t paying attention to their mistakes. As Limb explains, it was just one study, but the results make intuitive sense.

 

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IMAGINE: How Creativity Works

Flash Rosenberg imagines how the ideas in IMAGINE are tackled, tickled and teased-out by the author Jonah Lehrer.

 

Creativity go hand in hand with frustration, mental blocks and an inmmersion in disappointment, according to Lehrer. A delightfully animated and insightful account of the  processes of creative thought and inspiration.

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Video: Don Norman speaks out about engineering design education - jnd.org

Video: Don Norman speaks out about engineering design education - jnd.org | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it

The point is that engineering education, and for that matter, most education in the university, has become deeper and deeper, and as a result narrower and narrower. This means we teach and train specialties and specialists. There are lots of reasons why this is desirable, and the rapid advances being made in science and engineering result from the depth of knowledge. But this has its downside.

 

Practical applications require tying together the knowledge of the many specialties. They require generalists, people who have broad, integrated understanding of the world. Moreover, the specialties are mostly about science and engineering, but our new technologies impact people, lives, cultures, and societies.

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Creating Innovators: Why America's Education System Is Obsolete - Forbes

Creating Innovators: Why America's Education System Is Obsolete - Forbes | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
America's education system has become obsolete.

 

America’s last competitive advantage — its ability to innovate — is at risk as a result of the country’s lackluster education system, according to research by Harvard Innovation Education Fellow Tony Wagner.

 

Taking the stage at Skillshare’s Penny Conference, Wagner pointed out the skills it takes to become an innovator, the downfalls of America’s current education system, and how parents, teachers, mentors, and employers can band together to create innovators.

 

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Choke: What the Secrets of the Brain Reveal About Getting It Right When You Have To | KurzweilAI

Choke: What the Secrets of the Brain Reveal About Getting It Right When You Have To | KurzweilAI | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
Why do the smartest students often do poorly on standardized tests?

 

Dr. Sian Beilock, an expert on performance and brain science, reveals in Choke the astonishing new science of why we all too often blunder when the stakes are high. What happens in our brain and body when we experience the dreaded performance anxiety? And what are we doing differently when everything magically “clicks” into place and the perfect golf swing, tricky test problem, or high-pressure business pitch becomes easy?

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Examples of hybrid online learning from Ontario

Examples of hybrid online learning from Ontario | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it

Judith Tobin of Contact North has been collecting examples of innovation in online learning from the 20 universities and 24 colleges in the Ontario post-secondary system. These are being posted continuously into Contact North’s Educator and Trainer portal. The aim is to share best practice and encourage further innovation and best practices across the system.

 

 

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Go for a Good Walk or Swim Every Day to get Smarter

Go for a Good Walk or Swim Every Day to get Smarter | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
This week, The New York Times gave us some good news. According to an article by Gretchen Reynolds, a decade of research by neuroscientists and physiologists shows fairly convincingly that exercise can make you smarter. She writes:

 

Using sophisticated technologies to examine the workings of individual neurons — and the makeup of brain matter itself — scientists in just the past few months have discovered that exercise appears to build a brain that resists physical shrinkage and enhance cognitive flexibility. Exercise, the latest neuroscience suggests, does more to bolster thinking than thinking does.

 

There’s apparently a lot to be gained from a simple daily walk (assuming it checks out with your doctor). And, as the [accompanying] video below shows, the gains goes beyond cognition itself:

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E-Learning: Confusing Terminology, Research Gaps and Inherent Challenges by Sarah Guri-Rosenblit and Begoña Gros

This article, by Sarah Guri-Rosenblit and Begoña Gros, discusses the promises and drawbacks of e-learning in higher education, the gaps in relevant research and challenges in maintaining a student-learning-centred focus in a technology driven environment.


Via Paula Silva
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Can images stop data overload?

Can images stop data overload? | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
With more and more of us feeling overwhelmed by the constant stream of information we have to deal with at work, could data visualisation provide an answer?

In a lab in Sussex a group of people have had their brainwaves scanned while completing a series of tasks, individually and in groups, to see if data visualisation - presenting information visually, in this case a series of mind maps - can help.

The results showed that when tasks were presented visually rather than using traditional text-based software applications, individuals used around 20% less cognitive resources. In other words, their brains were working a lot less hard.

As a result, they performed more efficiently, and could remember more of the information when asked later. Working in groups, they used 10% less mental resources.

The research was carried out by Mindlab International, an independent research company that specialises in neurometrics - the science of measuring patterns of brain activity through EEG, eye tracking and skin conductivity, which tracks emotions.

"The key reason we do the work that we do is that most of our decision making, yours and mine, goes on in the subconscious, or auto pilot or whatever we call it. Our cognitive brain can't actually deal with the bombardment of messages that are streamed to our bodies constantly all the time," says Duncan Smith, Mindlab International's managing director.

Individuals and groups had their brainwaves monitored as they completed tasks using visual mapping software compared with traditional applications

 

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Isaac Asimov Imagines Learning in the Digital Age … and Gets It Quite Right (1989)

Isaac Asimov Imagines Learning in the Digital Age … and Gets It Quite Right (1989) | Creativity and learning | Scoop.it
httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ZmFEFO72gA

It features Asimov and a younger Bill Moyers talking about education and scientific progress, and it doesn’t take long for Asimov to start describing the revolution in learning we’re seeing unfold today. Imagine a world where computers, internet connections and websites let people learn when they want, wherever they want, and how they want. Suddenly technology democratizes education and empowers people of all ages, and, before too long, “Everyone can have a teacher in the form of access to the gathered knowledge of the human species.”
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