The educator environments both face-to-face (f2f) and online are investigated through the lens of transformative pedagogy with a focus on the visual within a design learning sub-context, which is the case-study for further analysis and application to wider cross-disciplinary contexts within the higher education ecology.
My research engages visualisation with creative ecologies, critically reflective frameworks and embodied pedagogies. I have extensive research and publishing experience in developing transitional educative spaces between academic, creative and professional practice.
The visual is presented, investigated and evaluated as a communicative learning artefact for online and f2f learner engagement, teacher reflection and group learning activities. The ‘visual’ is a powerful educative tool for communicating knowledge and understanding that provides the means of detecting learner misunderstandings.
The main tools I designed support my work as Director in the Faculty of A&D are a purposed-built Professional Experience Project (PEP) Tool and a flexible PEP Self-Enrolment Moodle site, across all trimesters, with a specific focus on accessibility and student mobility. From 2016 in my role as PEP Convenor, I led the faculty wide syllabus and curriculum design, development and delivery, taking on the challenge of developing coherent curricula across all of the degree programs, each with diverse artmaking and studio practices. The courses and digital tools that I designed now provide a coherent assessment environment for developing students’ (>400) externally facing public profiles with an expanded range of professional mentors, I increased the Mentor pool from about 20 to over 1,000 industry hosts who have registered both their business and a creative project in the PEP Tool interface.
Qualitative evidence of heightened visual literacy skills, deeper educator and learner reflections and personal awareness dialogues that document the learner moving on in their understanding is captured through visual, verbal, kinaesthetic and written artefacts. These are analysed, reflected upon, evaluated and archived in a series of practice-based case studies.
My commitment to accessibility is evidenced through: Learning Innovation Grants, 2013-2014 with A&D Director of Indigenous Programs, Tess Allas and Elder-in-Residence Vic Chapman (first NSW Indigenous school Principal), advisory groups and students to produce the Indigenous Learning Ecologies Video Series (>600 YouTube views). As the recipient of an individual UNSW Strategic Educational Fellowship: New Approaches to the Development of Professional Identity through Independent Critical Reflection, Kim’s approach to evaluation interweaves creative and professional industry contexts. For PEP she designed a Self-Reflective Expectations Framework that enables students to identify shifts in practice using six questions, without inflated reports of self-portrayal. Students receive three forms of feedback from self, industry and convenor to close the feedback loop.
Is measured by evidence of visual learning artefacts being adapted to other learning enterprises both cross-disciplinary and cross-institutional. Gathered data on the capability of these tools to increase teacher effectiveness and student learning is captured qualitatively and quantitatively. This project has been presented at a number of international and national conferences and has been published as journal articles and book chapters. The evidence from educator narratives, publication citations, repeated usage in practice and international recognition through awards and student success is also used as a measure of impact.
Impact on student learning and mobility is best evidenced through a 48% at A&D employment rate after PEP. I write ‘Sample’ project templates for negotiation, so over 1,000 business hosts and mentors can customise projects with students. Once created project opportunities are lodged in the PEP Tool. Students have a seat at the placement, project and mentor table. I have transformed language and culture of PEP beyond old fashioned ‘internships’ as time spent in situ with a pre-determined line managed ‘job’ to working with real-world ‘projects’. Evidence of shifts in student practice, have been identified pre-&-post PEP and in 2018, I received the inaugural International Society for Education through Art (InSEA) Award for Excellence in Research in Education through Art (AEREtA).
Rourke, A.J. & Snepvangers, K. (2016). Ecologies of practice in tertiary art and design: a review of two cases. Higher Education skills and workplace learning, 6(1), 69-85.
Rourke, A. (2011). Embedding threshold concepts into first year design history: Can we transform students understanding and way of seeing? ACCESS: Critical perspectives on Communication, Culture & Policy Studies, Thresholds and Transformations, 30(2), 91-105.
Rourke, A. & Sweller, J. (2009). The worked-example effect using ill-defined problems: Learning to recognise designers’ styles. Learning and Instruction, 19(2), 185-199.
Rourke, A. & Coleman, K. (2009). Interactive and Collaborative Learning in an e-learning environment: Using the peer review process to teach writing and research skills to Postgraduate students. The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge & Society, 5(1), 169-182.
Snepvangers, K., Harris, A., & Thomson, P. (Eds) (2018). Creativities: Policies, Partnerships and Education. In Palgrave Creativity Series. London: Palgrave Macmillan Publishing: Springer Nature.
Snepvangers, K., & Davis, S. (Eds) (2018). Embodied and walking pedagogies engaging the visual domain: Research creation and practice in Rourke, A., & Rees, V. (Eds), Book 8 in The Image Curated Series: Transformative Pedagogies in the Visual Domain. Common Ground Publishing: University of Illinois, Champaign IL, USA. 344 pages.
Snepvangers, K., & Mathewson-Mitchell, D. (Eds) (2018). Beyond Community Engagement: Transforming dialogues in art, education and the cultural sphere in Rourke, A., & Rees, V. (Eds), Book 4 in The Image Curated Series: Transformative Pedagogies in the Visual Domain. Common Ground Publishing: University of Illinois, Champaign IL, USA. 316 pages. DOI: 10.18848/978-1-86335-001-3/CGP.