Welcome to Issue 2

Welcome to the second edition of JUICE, the Journal of Useful Investigations in Creative Education.

It is always a pleasure to write an editorial for a journal, because it involves drawing attention to the hard work of all the contributors. Preparing and submitting an article for any journal requires considerable time and effort, and contributors often give this time on top of the demands of their day-to-day work. They are then rewarded with peer reviews, which often request numerous amendments that have to be addressed and incorporated before the article is published. So, I would like to begin by thanking the contributors for their sustained effort in producing quality outputs, and for their commitment to sharing them through JUICE.

Just as importantly, the work of peer reviewers must also be given due credit. As with contributors, peer reviewers also give their time generously in order to help develop and refine the submissions. The quality of any journal is dependent on the dedication and rigour of its reviewers, and JUICE is no exception. I would therefore like to thank all our peer reviewers for their time and effort in working on the submissions, the journal would not be possible without your generosity and criticality.

So what will you find in issue two of JUICE?

Articles

We begin with a case study on UCA’s PGCert in Creative Education, produced by six recent graduates of the course. In the article ‘Discussions in online collaborative work, cohesion and learning in higher education (and cake)‘, the authors critically reflect on their experience of learning online during the course, and use group videos to discuss the benefits and challenges of learning in a new environment. Integral to the PGCert is the use of online teams, and in the case study the authors also examine the role of teamwork in creating an effective online learning experience. If you like this case study, you might also enjoy the group’s online exhibition.

Our second article investigates ‘Best practices in internationalising curricula‘. Drawing on research from his doctoral study, Tomasz John highlights that despite the increased role of internationalisation in higher education, many common terms such as ‘intercultural competence’ are often misunderstood. Building on a comprehensive review of the literature, the author provides several clear recommendations to guide a more informed and inclusive approach to the internationalisation of curricula.

Continuing the theme of inclusivity, Rosie Holmes investigates the impact of the environment on learning. In her article ‘Walking towards an embodied pedagogy’, Rosie reflects on her use of walking to help her students liberate their thinking. This video case study considers how incorporating walking into learning might yield benefits for creative thinking and wellbeing, with the potential to reduce the anxiety that often accompanies the process of studying.

Building on the idea how to liberate thinking, Ray Martin provides some practical strategies to help students when they get stuck. In her article ‘Things fall apart: what can we do when nothing seems to work?‘, the author provides some wonderful examples of how issues that seemingly are unconnected to studying were in fact preventing students from moving forward. Who would have thought that a goat could stand in the way of academic success?

Next, we take a look at ‘Reflective teaching in the creative arts’, in which Annamarie Mckie looks specifically at how reflection is conceptualised in educational development programmes. Although reflection is a widely-used term in higher education, the author reviews literature to show how reflection is experienced differently by different people and considers the impact of this on their approach to teaching.

In ‘Work shock: expectation vs reality’, Ayshen Ali presents the findings from her research into students’ experiences of work placements. The majority of Ayshen’s students are required to undertake a work placement as part of their study on UCA’s Fashion Management and Marketing course, and this prompted the author to investigate how their expectations of a work placement differed from the reality.

Myself and Emre Caglayan then explore the question ‘How should universities position community in curriculum design?‘. Using a theoretical perspective of critical pedagogy, we compare three approaches to incorporating the concept of community in curriculum design: communities of inquiry, communities of learners, and communities of practice. Our findings show that while a greater focus on community in curricula can bring benefits for learners, there are significant factors which can inhibit this.

HEA reflection

In the article ‘If I knew then what I know now’, Lynda Fitzwater provides us with a privileged insight into an early teaching experience. Produced as part of her successful claim for Senior Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy, the article provides an outstanding example of how to reflect effectively on teaching. Through her reflective account, Lynda shows how infusing disciplinary knowledge with sound pedagogy can produce transformative results, for both students and tutors.

Book review

Our book review in this issue is courtesy of Ray Martin, a learning specialist and author of several articles on how to support effective learning. Ray reviews the new book ‘Crits: A student manual’ by Terry Barrett, which attempts to demystify the use of the critique in art and design education. In the book, Barratt provides numerous anecdotes of how terrifying crits can be for students, which show how easy it is for tutors to misuse their power during a crit. Ray’s review explains how Barrett’s ‘rules of engagement for crits’ can benefit both students and tutors by clarifying expectations in order to try and reduce the anxiety that is often caused before and during a crit.

Technology review

Lecture capture is a topic that can polarise opinions. While some tutors can be in favour of recording lectures for students, others often worry about a negative impact on attendance and express concerns about the loss of intellectual property. In the review of ‘Piloting lecture capture at UCA Canterbury’, Claire Scott and Mary-Lou Barratt discuss the introduction of lecture capture on the course, and explain how the benefits of recording lectures positively challenged their preconceptions.

The last word

It just remains for me to thank you, the reader, for your interest in JUICE. We are striving to make the journal a supportive route to publishing for both new and established researchers.

As stated in our mission statement, our purpose is to share insights from educators who are trying new things in their approach to teaching and supporting learning. This is our interpretation of creative education – it involves thinking critically about your pedagogy and making purposeful decisions to experiment and iterate.

If you have undertaken a useful investigation into your educational work, we would love to hear from you. Please see our guidelines on how to submit, and if you have any questions please contact me, Tony Reeves, at treeves2@uca.ac.uk.

Enjoy the JUICE!

Tony

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s