Posthumanism: a navigation aid for educators

Posted on Sep 7, 2018 in news



Students and colleagues have often asked me for a brief introduction to what we mean by ‘posthumanism’, and the implications this body of thought has for education. So I was pleased when Anne Rohstock got in touch to ask if I could publish something in the new online journal on_education, for a special issue on post- and transhumanism in education.

The article tries to give a useful overview of the various areas of work which can be grouped under the term ‘posthumanism’: in the article I classify these as critical posthumanism, technological posthumanism and ecological posthumanism, and try to suggest why these ideas are important to the way we think about education. I hope the article is a useful navigation device for educational researchers and practitioners who are new to this area of thought.

Posthumanism: a navigation aid for educators, on_education, issue no.2, September 2018

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Near Future Teaching: video edits

Posted on Jul 3, 2018 in news

videos screenshot

The final set of video edits from the Near Future Teaching project  are now online. These were thematically clustered from around 70 interviews with staff and students at the University of Edinburgh, and surface some of the issues and values the community would like to see extended into future planning for digital education.

Dip in to see how our community would like to see a sense of wonder, a focus on community, augmentation and ethical approaches to data included in how we think about our digital future. Distance, nearness, relationships and creativity all feature highly and are giving us a sense of the underpinnning values that should shape the way the university thinks about digital education.

There are also some new posts on the methods we are using in this project in our blog, covering the way we are bringing futures thinking to bear on the co-design of the future of our teacing.


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Near Future Teaching project

Posted on Sep 19, 2017 in news


I have a new project running this year, along with the wonderful Jennifer Williams, Michael Gallagher, Lucy Kendra and colleagues, which aims to ‘design the future of digital education at Edinbugh’. Through a series of events, workshops, thinktanks and interviews the Near Future Teaching project will be working with students and staff across the university to devise a values-based future vision for digital education strategy and practice. The web site gives an update of where we’ve got to, and if you’d like to know more just drop me an email.

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Digital sanctuary and anonymity on campus: article on WonkHE

Posted on Sep 18, 2017 in news










After my Alt-C talk this September, which discussed the social value of anonymity within universities, David Kernohan from the excellent WonkHE kindly asked me to write a blog post covering some of the issues raised by our recent research in this area.

The post argues that we need to broaden our discussions of anonymity in social media, not only because it does useful work in opening up discussion on difficult and sensitive issues, but also because – given the current normalisation of surveillance, tracking and profiling through conventional social media – our students need spaces of digital sanctuary.

You can read the full post here on WonkHE, and watch the linked keynote here.


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Edinburgh Futures Institute

Posted on Sep 11, 2017 in news


This year I’m going to be quite heavily involved with the new Edinburgh Futures Institute, which will be doing new kinds of interdisciplinary research to tackle complex societal problems, bring the social sciences and humanities to bear on data science, and develop a whole new portfolio of postgraduate and undergraduate programmes to teach students about current pressing and critical themes.

The EFI will be based in the Old Royal Infirmary building – for those that know Edinburgh, this faces out onto the beautiful Meadows near the centre of town – and will make some truly exciting new links between work we do at the university, local communities, businesses and people, as well as with students, academics, practitioners and artists from around the globe.

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Teaching this semester: Digital Futures for Learning

Posted on Sep 11, 2017 in news

I’m looking forward to this semester’s teaching on our MSc in Digital Education – between now and Christmas I will be co-tutoring with the brilliant Jen Ross on the Digital Futures for Learning Course, which takes an ‘open curriculum’ approach to asking students to consider, critique, plan and play-out the future of learning. We’ll be teaching in the open on this one, with the course site opening up in around 3 weeks. The course also links to a new project I am currently leading at Edinburgh – the Near Future Teaching project – of which more later….

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