All entries for Monday 23 August 2004

August 23, 2004

PDP and blogs – review and rethink….

For the last few weeks I have been going around the university pointing out that PDP (according to the QAA approved definition) can include the use of blogs to record informal learning (or learning from experience); similarly, blogs can (and now do) include a specialist section to encourage PDP activity. Imagine a Venn diagram of PDP and Blogs overlapping by about 1/5th…. In other words – 'PDP is not a blog' and 'a blog is not PDP’. But looking through the postings of staff and students I'm beginning to think that the second statement (a blog is not PDP) is over-stating the case.

If PDP is seen as a natural reflective practice, just a new name for the considered 'learning from experience' thinking of all mature adults, (and should we even include the unconscious process by which everybody makes sense of their lives – whether reflected upon or not?), then many – even most – of the blog entries so far are examples of PDP in practice.

I'm thinking of back-tracking on my message to academics and others new to blogs and to PDP. The new message is:
'Students encouraged to keep a personal blog will usually grow towards a reflective style which is the necessary – if not sufficient – foundation for PDP'

Not quite so snappy – but more accurate – than 'A blog is not a PDP'


archaeology, wallpaper and DIY

Task to patch and decorate the back wall of my 1902 terraced cottage.
1. Start: digging through the 1" of multilayers of wallpaper and paint; through (among others) the dark floral papers, the 1950's mini-prints, the green paint, the brown and orange wallpaper, cream paint and 1980's laura ashley. Who were these people that put up this stuff? All, I guess, thrilled with their own efforts to transform what was there before.
2. Then – hitting the bedrock – the old (and crumbly) plaster underneath the century of decorative additions. Thinks – the last time a person saw this bit of wall was before the first world war – wonder who that was, what happened to him…..
3.Then – patch, repair, plaster, paste up textured paper to cover ‘imperfections’ – easy? Don’t ask! Sufficient to say that the venerable wall is now in the process of shedding the wall covering applied (with considerable unladylike language) on Saturday. It is beginning to balloon away from the wall, the edges curling back and the whole thing, frankly, a complete botch….
4. What would all those competent wallpaperers of years past think of the sad state of the wall they loved (or at least cared enough about to decorate)
Sorry guys! (guys, in this case, includes any non-blokes who may have had a hand in the evolution of this wall of 20th century taste…).
Back to the concept stage I think….

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