One year after #2016DML

tl;dr: I am giving a brief update on what happened to the ideas I was kicking around in my #2016DML Ignite Talk about refugees hacking the education system. I am also briefly describing a class in which students and refugees tell stories and share their perspectives.

One year has passed since my trip to #2016DML and my Ignite Talk. Lots of things have changed for me personally since then and, more importantly, not many things have changed in the way that refugees’ access to German higher education is designed. What has changed, though, is that fewer people make it to Germany and, to many, the perceived urgency of finding ways to integrate them into the education system has lessened a bit. This is not to say that nobody is working on that, not at all, it is rather becoming the ‘undercover operation’ that it has been before 2015. Some organizations, Kiron for example, have gained some ground. Mostly, however, it is left to the federal states and the universities to organize the efforts around studying in Germany. And that’s a good thing, I think. This is exactly the kind of problem that should be solved by society, its democratic organizations, its elected officials, and with tax money. On the other side, this makes changes in the information ecosystem hard to push for, difficult to implement. We’re still talking about a massive bureaucracy organized mostly by PDF for download.  Continue reading →

Different Contexts of Open Licensing

tl;dr: I worked with students and refugees on questions around licensing and copyright and they perceived ‘open’ to be default. We also talked about different contexts of open, motivations and risks.

It has been a while since I last updated this space. With the beginning of the new year, I caught a persistent flu and I have been quite busy catching up on the things I missed because of that downtime. So I started the year a bit later than most others and one of my first gigs back from bed in the real world was a short workshop on copyright and open licensing with refugees and students at the University of Hamburg.

I have been working with this group for the whole semester now. We talked about storytelling, about narratives and about privacy among many other things. As we approach the end of the semester and some of them will publish their work online, I did not want to miss the chance to introduce them to some basic principles and ideas around copyright. Continue reading →

Quick Note on Storytelling, Security and Privacy

In a post from Nov 17, I tried to give an update on what happened after my Ignite Talk at #2016DML. As I mentioned then, I joined Cornelia and Anna to co-facilitate a small group of students and refugees who started working on storytelling in teams of German students and refugees. Over the last couple of weeks, teams and tandems were formed and some were split up again. Usually, this happened when some of the refugees could not attend the class anymore for various reasons: some moved, one found a job, one decided to attend more German language classes. Continue reading →

Hack the Edu System – 6 Weeks after my Ignite Talk

tl;dr: I promised regular updates after my Ignite Talk at #2016DML and this is the first post that is meant to catch everyone up who is interested.

It has been six weeks since my Ignite Talk at the 2016 DML Conference. After the talk, many educators and practitioners reached out – not only from the conference site but also from elsewhere in the world. Some gave feedback directly as comments in the Google Doc (resulting in a slightly edited draft), some tweeted and some sent me email. I promised that I would try and keep everyone in the loop and so I will try and sum up what happened since #2016DML. Continue reading →

Hack the Edu System – Ignite Talk at #2016DML

tl;dr: I gave an Ignite Talk at #2016DML in which I talked about access to Higher Ed for refugees in Germany. In the transcript below, I am inviting you to give feedback and to suggest ideas. If you want to dig in deeper, there also is a Google Doc with first ideas.

Here’s a recording of my talk

As I write this post I am on my way from Hamburg to Los Angeles, both excited and a bit nervous about the upcoming #2016DML conference at UC Irvine in California. This is the the first time for me to be presenting at an Ignite Talk session and I don’t have that much experience at international conferences to begin with. When I submitted my proposal, I would not have imagined for it to be considered and so I didn’t pay too much attention to the format itself. I followed an “I’ll see about that when I get there” attitude. So, I am on my way now and I have decided that this will also be the first time for me to publish a blog post about a talk I am giving. I am doing this for several reasons: Continue reading →