Page 34 - Campus Technology, October/November 2020
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“We are laser-focused on ensuring that our students continue to have the kinds of educational opportunities that attracted them to Arizona State University.” — Kyle Bowen
students and their peers, and with ASU cam- pus resources.
Enhancements to physical spaces also have interesting implications for the use of tech- nology. Over time, we will continue to see a deeper blending of physical and digital envi- ronments.
CT: Will students find tools in their Digital Backpacks that they can use both during their academic careers at ASU and on into their professional lives?
Bowen: Our immediate and perhaps most obvious goal is to support learners in the current semester. However, we see the Digital Backpack as an enduring part of the student learning experience going forward.
The ASU Digital Backpack includes tools and enterprise technologies that don’t stop at the door — they don’t expire at the end of a course and they don’t end with graduation. They are the same class of tools and tech- nologies that students will ultimately find or bring with them in the workplace. With their Digital Backpacks, students learn in a rich, authentic technology-supported environ- ment that, in many ways, mirrors the future workplace.
CT: Could you give some examples of
what you’d want to accomplish with the digital backpack as it’s used in the technology-enhanced environments you’re creating at ASU?
Bowen: Sure. As we think about designing the ASU learning experience, one of the essential, game-changing pieces that stands out is enabling the co-creation of new knowledge. This moves us away from sheer content delivery and into deeper constructivist forms of learning. Co-creation is so empowering that it can be considered one of the highest forms of learning. Using the tools available in the Digital Backpack, along with other related strategies, we can aspire to co-creation as a reachable and practical element of the ASU learning experience.
Tools from the digital backpack can support storytelling and enable students to create nar- ratives. For example, when students are able to take on generative topics that are of intense personal interest to them, the learning experi- ence becomes a very motivating aspect of their lives. Those narratives may then become artifacts of learning, and potentially be includ- ed in digital portfolios or with other strategies for assessment. And ideally, students may dis- cover pathways into their future professional lives that offer more relevance than they could ever have imagined.

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