In keeping with the aim of the conference to explore, test and extend our understanding of constructionism the conference keynotes are drawn from a diverse range of backgrounds and each are asked to stimulate and fuel the conversations on constructionism which will take place during the event.
Title: “The significance of constructionism as a distinctive pedagogy”
Diana Laurillard is Professor of Learning with Digital Technologies, UCL-IOE, Current: collaboration with UCL-ICN, and NIE in Singapore, to investigate a constructionist design for digital games for learners with dyscalculia and low numeracy.
At the RELIEF Centre in UCL-IGP, she is investigating the co-design of videos and MOOCs in our project on Future Education, producing 2 so far: Community-Based Research: Getting Started and Transforming Education in Challenging Environments, Arabic and English.
Other current projects include work at the Centre for Global HE at UCL-IOE, on the Transformational Potential of MOOCs. At the Advanced Innovation Centre for the Future of Education , Beijing Normal University, she is working on Building teacher community knowledge of blended learning. Working with FIT-Ed , as a founding member of the TPD@Scale Coalition of global universities and international development agencies.
She has held previous posts as Head of the e-Learning Strategy Unit at the government Department for Education and Skills (2002-5); Pro-Vice Chancellor for learning technologies and teaching at the Open University (1995-2002).
Title: “What Constructionists Don’t Know about Constructionism”
Andrea diSessa holds a Ph.D. in physics (MIT) and is Corey Professor Emeritus at University of California, Berkeley. He is a member of the National Academy of Education and a Fellow of the American Educational Research Association.
His research centers on the role of intuitive knowledge in learning science, and the development of computational literacies. He is the prime designer of Boxer, a medium to support computational literacy. diSessa wrote the books Turtle Geometry: The Computer as a Medium for Exploring Mathematics, with H. Abelson (1981), and Changing Minds: Computers, Learning and Literacy (2000).
He has authored over 100 journal articles and book chapters, including “Local Sciences: Viewing the Design of Human-Computer Systems as Cognitive Science” (1991), “Toward an Epistemology of Physics” (1993), “What Do ‘Just Plain Folk’ Know about Physics” (1996), “Conceptual Change in a Microcosm” (2017), and “Computational literacy and ‘The Big Picture’ concerning computers in mathematics education” (2018).
Title: “A re-reading of the political stakes of constructionism and its current contestation in higher education ”
Mick Wilson is an artist, educator and researcher, currently Professor of Art at the University of Gothenburg. He is visiting faculty at the Center for Curatorial Studies Bard (2013-ongoing); and at the New York School of Visual Arts (2014-ongoing). He was Fellow at BAK, basis voor aktuele kunst, Utrecht, (2018-19), and was previously Head of the Valand Academy, Gothenburg (2012-2018) and Dean of the Graduate School of Creative Arts & Media, Ireland (2007-2012). He was chair of the Step-change for Higher Art Research and Education (SHARE) academic network (2010-2014) a pan-European development framework for research education in the creative arts; and first editor-in-chief of PARSE Journal – parsejournal.com (2015-2017). Recent co-edited volumes include: Curating After the Global (MIT Press, 2019); How Institutions Think (MIT Press, 2017): The Curatorial Conundrum (MIT Press, 2016) with P. O’Neill et al.; and Public Enquiries: PARK LEK and the Scandinavian Social Turn (BDP, 2018) with G. Zachia et al.
Based on an analysis of the ways in which constructionism is both implicitly and explicitly operational within contemporary art education, Wilson proposes a re-reading of the political stakes of constructionism and its current contestation in higher education.
Designing Constructionist Futures
Constructionist thought has evolved as socio-cultural theories of learning have expanded our understanding of how people interact with each other, with ideas, and with the environment. The Designing Constructionist Futures volume includes both original visionaries as well as emergent scholars that have been inspired by and, in many cases, brought up on constructionist tools and ideas to articulate a model of constructionism that engages deeply with culture, communities, contexts, race, ethnicity, modes of power, and modalities of agency. In this panel, we invite a handful of contributing authors to engage in a conversation about where constructionism is today, 50 years on, as well as how the nature of constructionist work can and should transform as we move forward.