Posted by & filed under Critical Pedagogy, mosomelt.

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Call for Chapter Proposals: Critical Digital Pedagogy – Broadening Horizons, Bridging Theory and Practice.

Edited by Suzan Koseoglu, George Veletsianos, Chris Rowell

We are excited to announce the call for proposals for an edited collection on the intersection of critical pedagogy and digital technologies in post-secondary and higher education contexts. Although there has been growing interest in critical digital pedagogy, scholarly literature in this area is scarce, fragmented, and lacks a diversity of voices. In addition, there is a dearth of examples showing how the philosophy of critical pedagogy is applied in practice in today’s increasingly digital and expansive higher education systems. This gap raises significant concerns because it makes it difficult for instructors, faculty trainers, instructional designers, administrators, and policymakers to transfer critical theory to practice and policy, and engage with critical digital pedagogy as an emerging and intersectional practice. To address this gap, we invite case studies and reflections that demonstrate how critical pedagogy is enacted in digital learning contexts (i.e., open, online, blended, etc.). Due to the interdisciplinary and practical nature of the edited book, we welcome contributions from scholars in a broad range of fields and from different backgrounds.

Planned publication online and in paper format by Athabasca University Press as a Gold Open Access publication.

Target Audience
The edited collection is aimed for instructors, faculty trainers, instructional designers, administrators, policymakers and students who wish to better understand how critical pedagogy is applied in different digital learning contexts and across different disciplines. As such, submissions should be accessible to a broad range of readers.

Scope and Recommended Topics
Critical pedagogy is the central theme in the edited book and all submissions should clearly contribute to the theme. We encourage submissions that demonstrate “failures” as well as successes, while taking a critical look into the approach itself.
Related topics include but are not limited to: decolonization, diversity, equality, equity, inclusion, indigenization, targeted pedagogical approaches such as feminist- and anti-racist pedagogy, a critical look into the use of technology for learner empowerment and agency, the use of critical pedagogy in open and networked spaces.

We invite submissions which explore critical digital pedagogy in context through case studies and/or reflective accounts of practice. Language and style should be accessible to a broad range of readers. To ensure consistency between the book chapters, all proposals should address the following in their submissions: (i) how critical pedagogy is enacted in practice, (ii) the role of digital technologies in this practice, and (iii) lessons learned/implications. Final submissions should be between 3500-4000 words including references. Further guidelines will be provided with notifications of acceptance.

Important Dates
1 December 2019: Proposal submission deadline (one page)
1 January 2020: Notification of acceptance (chapter guidelines will be provided)
1 April 2020: Full chapter submission (3500-4500 words including references)
15 June 2020: Reviews (authors will be invited to review other contributions)
1 August 2020: Revisions due from authors
September 2020: Editing and submission to Athabasca University Press.

Proposals should be submitted to the editors via email ( For further enquiries, please feel free to contact any of the editors.

Information on Athabasca University Press
The final manuscript will be submitted to the Distance Education series at Athabasca University Press. Books in this series offer informative and accessible overviews, research results, discussions and explorations of current issues, technologies and services used in distance education. It’s current focus is on digital learning and education, with each volume examining critical issues, emerging trends, and historical perspectives in the field. The series is targeted at a wide group of readers that study and practice digital and online learning.

Book published under this Distance Education series are available at Athabasca University Press 

Posted by & filed under mosomelt.

After having a supervision meeting late August with both supervisors, I have found getting up and opening up my PGR9 (application for doctoral candidature) difficult. Don’t get me wrong, it is not from lack of critical feedback of the PGR9 document to date. It is developed, unrealistic fear (can say that now a month out) of making sure I am attending to what is important- and not knowing… …what I do not now know, does not help with this.

September has been messy. Along with fear (which leads to perseveration and distraction), I took on the Head of Department (HoD) role while my line manager was away on leave. While the role itself was not too demanding (she was super organised and left me with only the day-to-day issues to deal with rather than big decision making); mixed with the teaching, PhD (oh, and life…), it was tight- but doable.

Added to this, I also attended the Mobile Learning (mLearn) and European Congress of Technology Enhanced Learning (EC-TEL) conference in Delft, The Netherlands for a month (yes- while doing HoD). This would have been all still doable in terms of continuing work on my PGR9 overseas… …if I was able to take my laptop with me! You see, a while back, Apple made a recall on my laptop’s model (faulty battery), which I duly considered then ignored as they could not guarantee a timely return- what with me working away on the PGR9, and software required for the HoD role which I could not be without. When I turned up to the airport, I was informed that I could not board the plane with the laptop, and would need to have it collected by someone. Fortunately, I had my trusty iPad and was able to the majority of the day-to-day work, though unable to attend to the PhD without my Endnote and other resources.

The conference itself was informative- both from a Programme Leader perspective, as well as some reassurance of where the PhD study was heading. I was able to attend the Doctoral Consortium, and was reassured with the number of students using Design Based Research as a methodology for their studies. It was nice to see that as a university, we were ahead of the game in some respects (lecture capture; video assessment), though behind in others (learning analytics and machine learning- i.e. for marker free-text answers).

There were a number of studies that created, tested and validated their own questionnaires, rather than using what was already available. This was something to consider for my own study- as the measure of “critical thinking skills” is something that is inconsistently measured. At this point, however, rather than add to the pool of “yet another measure”, I have decided to use a couple of measures already established- California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory (CCTDI) and the Health Science Reasoning Test (HSRT). Currently I am awaiting confirmation of ordering the test package to see if will in fact be applicable to this study.

The PhD will be considering “self-determination” which encourages the heutagogical approach of students’ determining what they need to learn. The conference included Professor Chee-Kit Looi as a keynote, who refers to this learning as “informal learning”- learning outside of the class; and the difference between Blended Learning and (the new catch-phrase) Seamless learning- which is considered more authentic in learning with a trajectory to being self-directed. There were other considerations relatable to the PhD- framework for second iteration; AI mindset (i.e can behaviour be measured?); and how student choice is crucial.

So, overall, the conference was informative and reassuring for a quick 6 day trip to the other side of the world.

Back in NZ (on 22nd), I was able to wrap up some ideas as I re-connected with my laptop to continue development of the PGR9. Meeting with both supervisors on the first day of October…

Posted by & filed under mosomelt.

Recently, the MESH360 team undertook the second stage of the VR simulator research project. The aim was to investigate and understand Paramedic stress and if this is influenced by VR technology and/or practical simulation.

The first iteration of this project was back in 2018 when we provided an emergency ambulance response toward an injured patient. On this occasion, we monitored heart rate and interviewed the participants, asking for a working diagnosis based solely on the VR experience. In addition, we used a Galvanic skin response  (g.s.r.)  Impedance meter for sweat gland activity that measured parasympathetic /sympathetic response.

The 2019 version was slightly different in that the GSR equipment was unavailable. However, with a team that included PhD students, educational experts and intensive care paramedics, we set out to investigate a helicopter journey toward an injured patient. The VR journey was developed in several stages. The first stage we managed to gain access to Westpac, the emergency helicopter service here in Auckland. This gave us the first shot which included a walk toward the machine which was later developed to show take off and a flight toward the emergency scene. The next step was filmed by attaching a Samsung 360  camera to a drone and flying the device down a river toward my home. This was then pieced together with an interior shot of the helicopter to give the feel of flight and landing.

So with the team in place, we managed to recruit students of all qualifications and a wide level of experience. This included post-graduate students with over fifteen years of experience to first years students with less than one year experience.

I won’t go into the ins and outs of the research here as we hope to have the results published in the near future. What I really want to say is that there where some very interesting and surprising things that were noted. Being the second time that we have done this and having a higher standard of experience, we started to see some unexpected trends. The first of which was a stress management technique from the participants within the VR experience.  Box breathing is a technique used to reduce fight or flight and relax those about to engage in a stressful event. We noted the student would start to perform this mid-VR flight and increase the rate of breathing control as the helicopter was nearing the scene. In addition to the Box breathing, we noted changes in body language, with several participants showing fingernail picking and hand rubbing. Again, this related to the VR event and whilst not being an expert in this, looked to relate to anxiety and stress. Finally, without prompt, we had two students who replied to the questions being asked by the VR helicopter pilot. Again, totally unexpected and for me represents a level of engagement that the VR environment provided to the student.

Lessons learnt from this experiment are that with an increased quality VR environment comes a greater level of interactive engagement. We are still learning and still improving on this work, but it is very exciting to see that both the participants and those performing the experiment are still being surprised by the results.


Box breathing: