Book Review: Cultures of Mediatization

Anyone read this book? Sounds quite hard going! More worrying, this book is dated by the use of words such as "cyberculture", "cyborgs" and "cyberpunks". While there is attention paid to the Frankfurt School (again) and the medium theory of Harold Innis and Marshall McLuhan, the participatory nature of the read-write web is neglected. Certainly there is attention in chapter 3 to theories of mediation, building into a definition of mediatisation, which is described as…

Drugs for Life? [Book Review]

Looks like an interesting work of cultural history - how our ideas of what is 'healthy' is determined by changes in the 'health' industry: Once upon a time, people generally considered themselves healthy unless they felt ill, or had frailties or symptoms beyond normal ones. Two large changes have resulted in a new model of health. First, in the past half-century we have seen the rise of risk factors: familiar things such as diet, age…

Learning Outcomes of Any Value? #HigherEd

Interesting article in Times Higher about 'Learning Outcomes' and the general impatience and disregard that most academics view them as - dangerous tickbox exercises rather than helping improve learning & teaching: "Professor Furedi, how do you get around learning outcomes?" a young lecturer asks me in a breakout session. I have just spent 10 minutes explaining the corrosive influence of learning outcomes on education to my audience at the recent Think Festival in The Hague. Nevertheless, I am…

Advent & Christmas Wisdom from Henri J.M. Nouwen #AdventBookClub

So, on 'The Big Read', I essentially run an online book club with a housegroup affiliated, but enjoying the thought that I can join with @pamjweb and a few others this advent in reading Advent and Christmas Wisdom from Henri J.M. Nouwen. The internationally renowned priest and author, respected professor and beloved pastor Henri Nouwen (pronounced Henry Now-win) wrote over 40 books on the spiritual life. As Merton before him, Henri always stressed the relational.…

Learning Through Engagement with the Conference #JISCEL12

Last week I attended the JISC 'Innovating Learning' online conference - here's a blog post I wrote for 'Letters from the Edge' - the conference blog: This is a post, as with my ‘live’ blog posts, written as an ‘on the spot reflection’ rather than an agonised-over academic piece! Over the past few years, I may have sworn at virtual classrooms in my previous role. Once, however you stop focusing on the technology it’s great…
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