Educational Development

Assessment of Prior Learning for Diploma of Fine Arts

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Just met with Kris Bennett, Kate Vercoe, and Rayna Dickson from the Centre for Assessment of Prior Learning (CAPL) to talk about ways in which communications technologies may help in the facilitation of an assessment of learning for past Fine Arts students of the Polytech.

These students have completed the Diploma in Fine Arts and now interested in the award of bachelor of Fine Arts. Having this award could assist those who have become Visual Arts Teachers in high school to achieve a higher wage bracket.

To achieve this award the applicants need to enter into a facilitated and communicative assessment process with Kate, with expectations being to articulate their learning, underpinning conceptual bases, theory of practice, and portfolios of practice. I went into some detail of how past methods of journal based learning (as is commonly used in creative arts courses) translates to the digital and networked mediums. ePortfolios, blogs, or digital journals/portfolios more generally. We also talked about ways in which those with a barrier to using such technologies may still have an opportunity to engage. I suggested that we just ask for a sharable journal to be one of the requirements, then offer workshops in a range of ways to do that, from word documents sent into group email, to audio visual blogs.

We also talked a bit about other communication tools such as telephones, sms, fax, email and eGroups, instant messaging, and voice over Internet Protocol (VOIP). We talked about the uses and limitations of such tools as Skype and Elluminate, talking about their relevance to life outside the Polytech, what would be more likely to be commonly used, and what would have added benefit to the participants life - and therefore motivation to engage with such technology.
Kate seemed interested in the idea of establishing an eGroup, supported by an initial face to face social, one to one telephone, group SMS, fax, and weekly instant messaging and possibly Skype meetings. The aim being to stimulate engagement with the eGroup and establish trust, social bonds etc, and build a healthy learning community. As an add on to this, the use of the digital journals would perhaps be optional. Kate was open to the idea of observing the Teach and Learn Online eGroup, and seeing an example of how a self sustaining online learning community might work, and using it to find connection with other teachers and examples of the model she is considering. I will join Kate to the eGroup and support her with any questions she may have.

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