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June 14, 2016

Exploring Third Space with Colleagues

Exploring Third Space Realms

I HAVE EMBARKED ON a series of deep engagements while thinking about the evolution of three distinct BSc degrees involving creative students. The collegial engagement incorporates a wide swath of research in Third Space (Cronin, 2014) [1], both from the perspective of students and lecturers.

We often use the Guided Inquiry approach to enhance engagement of learning and learning by doing (Kuhlthau, 2007) [2]. We need to give breathing room in the academic programme so students have time to use high value laboratory assets to dive deep into cloud-based and desktop assets.

Our most creative students occasionally dive into rabbit holes and enjoy low-stress and often playful sessions with technology.

Play is an important activity for learning. You play by doing things, by encountering new environments and by interacting with others while developing sensory awareness.

As a constructivist, I advocate Guided Inquiry whereby students can concurrently engage in the same processes.

At this current juncture during a lively programmatic review, we are in the Third Space. Both student feedback and lecturer expertise are helping to foster a community of learners. We are listening to the world views shared by students while drawing on observations shared by the communities of practice used by lecturers. And I hope we can set into motion a semi-permanent Community of Practice among the staff.

  1. Catherine Cronin -- "A Conversation about Third Space, Third Place, and Liminality" on her blog, 2014.
  2. Carol Kulhthau -- Guided Inquiry: Learning in the 21st Century, ISBN 978-1591584353

+++ Bernie Goldbach teaches creative media for business in the Limerick Institute of Technology.

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