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Podcast: Real Time Document of One to One Teaching in Digital Literacies

This is the first one to one IT teaching session after moving from a group drop in model which proved to be too problematic to work with.  The podcast is a real time document of the problems an 82 year old women – Bella Stewart – encountered with using her laptop computer.  Alex Dunedin walks through the problems and solutions that were apparent at the time.  Read more

Finding Appropriate Models For Teaching Digital Skills In The Community

Since 2013 I have been thinking about how Ragged University can do digital teaching in the community. The theory goes that computers are common place, that they are accessible and that everyone will gain something from knowing how to use a computer. How hard could it be to help people learn how to do what they need to with the equipment available ?  This is a learning journal of the progressive experiments required to find appropriate models of event that address the mysterious ‘digital divides’ that exist.

First stop, the task was to identify computers which everyone could use for free. What sprung to mind was the fact that commonly we find computers in libraries and some community centres. I looked at the local computers and, on the face of things, saw that the machines were good.

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The Birth of the Floating Classroom

So, as you might have been following over the years, through the Ragged Uni project I have been trying to find various ways of delivering free computer training in community situations where people have least access.  To see the photos of the floating classroom scroll to the bottom.  Meantime, I will try and provide some context as to how this has come together. My personal relationship with modern computers is one where I had to salvage computers from what other people discarded and learn to make them work with the minimum of money invested.  It is amazing what gets thrown out; not only does the computer industry build in redundancy to the products pushing people to buy a whole new bundle every three years, but also people throw things out because they think the technology has become redundant. Read more

Podcast: Professor Keith Smyth’s Inaugural Lecture; ‘It’s Third Space, Jim, but not as we know it’

As I pull away in the train from Inverness, I leave with the thought of ‘pivotal moments’. This is one of the messages which I have taken from Keith Smyth’s inaugural address for his Professorship in the University of the Highlands and Islands. That we should be seeking them out and trying to join them up in our world… Read more

Podcast: Keith Smyth talks about Digital Literacies

Keith Smyth, Senior Lecturer in Education at Napier University gave a presentation at the Adult Learning Project Annual General Meeting on how community education can use digital tools. Digital literacies are high on the priority list for educationalists, and it is key how they are employed in the community context. Where do the internet, computers, MOOCs, email, and any modern technology fit into learning today ? Well, these are some of the concepts which Keith talks about here.

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