• higher ed,  OU

    Too much bloody vision

    There’s a scene in This Is Spinal Type where they visit Elvis’s grave and after some failed harmonising, Nigel says “It really puts perspective on things, though, doesn’t it?”, to which David responds “Too much. There’s too much fucking perspective .” It’s a line that often comes to mind, replacing “perspective” with whatever there seems to be a current abundance in. Recently this has been “vision”. It’s a strange one, because I think we all say we want a clear vision from any leader in an institution. Maybe it’s just me, but I currently feel Vision Fatigue quite strongly. We have an overall University set of priorities. Then we have…

  • onlinepivot,  OU

    The pandemic response and the OU

    I’ve just had an article published in the OTESSA Journal, entitled “The UK Open University COVID Response: A Sector Case Study“. I wrote it last year as I was interested in the various actions the OU took during the pandemic. Lots of people in other unis came to us formally and informally seeking advice as they were required to shift their teaching online. You may remember I ran some drop-in sessions on different topics back in 2020. The OU also set up a research fund, developed teaching content and gathered resources on openLearn (most notably, the Take your Teaching Online free course). In the paper I categorised the different responses…

  • higher ed

    The Haunted Lecture Hall

    A ghost story… (not really, it’s about higher ed) As I mentioned in my last post, one of my favourite book genres is the haunted house. There are many variations on this, but at some point the authors of all such books face a dilemma – how do they keep the narrative moving towards the scary finale, when all sensible people would leave? This calls on a literary or plot device of some sort that keeps our protagonists in situ, while ratcheting up the horror. It can be that they simply are not allowed to leave (for example, the old escaping and after hours walking ending up back at the…