Designs on eLearning Conference

  • Year: 2005
  • Website: No longer available


Designs on eLearning, the international conference in the use of technology for teaching and learning in art, design and communication was held at the University of the Arts London from the 14 to 16 September 2005.

The conference focused on established practice in the field, on innovations in teaching and learning with technology, on the challenges and successes presented by the visual nature of our discipline, and on the benefits of online and blended learning.

“A landmark event for art and design academics to explore developing e-learning practices and issues in the subject area”. David Hall, Director Information and Resources, Norwich School of Art and Design.

A view of the Conference from Sarah Sherman, eLearning Adviser, JISC RSC for London

With 150 delegates coming from all over the UK, Italy, The Netherlands, America, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, Finland and Sweden, the University of the Arts' conference Designs on eLearning was the first international conference to address technological research into teaching and learning in Art & Design.

The conference was opened by Bill Rammell MP, Minister of State for Lifelong Learning in FE and HE, who set the context for the two days. He stated that new technology is about aiding and supporting teaching and learning rather than being the driving force.

Judith Mottram, Professor of Visual Art at Nottingham Trent, delivered the keynote presentation, in which she highlighted the opportunities and challenges of using technology in Art & Design. Judith focused on how pedagogy should support creativity and expressed concerns about the over-emphasis on the 'doing' rather than content.

The conference offered a wide-ranging selection of short and full papers delivered by teachers, learning technologists and researchers about how e-learning is being successfully applied in the education of art and design. Presentations ranged from using multi-media and VLEs - to how to engage distance learners - to using weblogs and online assessment. Delegates found it very useful to hear about the specific experiences of a variety of institutions, about how they had approached the introduction and use of e-learning, how it had affected teaching and learning overall, and to see concrete examples of how it's been implemented (Peter Jennet, Head of Learning and Information Resources Wimbledon School of Art).

This conference provided an opportunity to find out how new technologies are being successfully embedded and how challenges can be addressed. E-learning is taking off at varying rates and students' expectations are partly responsible for dictating the increase in speed. We are now moving into an era where we are educating 'digital natives'. Is the delivery of Art & Design in Higher Education able to meet their demands?