We bring Digital Change Makers together [https://unsplash.com/photos/XkKCui44iM0 Priscilla Du Preez]
Learners are often not sufficiently involved in the current debates and scientific discourses about the opportunities and challenges of digital change in higher education policy. In this way, they usually only play the role of passive participants. For innovative ideas and new perspectives, there is sometimes neither the openness of the process, nor a fundamental willingness to think and act from the point of view of the actual users. However, some university and non-university structures, projects and initiatives in Germany and Europe show how innovative and active, but also critical and constructive, students want to and can help shape digitalization processes at various levels - if they are given the opportunity to do so.
For this reason, the HFD has launched the initiative #DigitalChangeMaker and wants to offer students the opportunity to think together about higher education in a new, creative and innovative way and to actively participate in shaping discourses in an exciting community of experts from different backgrounds. This core team of student experts from all over Germany wants to create new opportunities for committed young people to discuss the future of their digitally influenced learning worlds and to find their own ways of actively shaping this future.
Since October 2020, the third cohort of #DigitalChangeMaker is working together creatively & productively for a year, all members constantly being in close contact with each other through joint workshop meetings, monthly AG calls and project team calls. During the digital kick-off meetings on October 2 and 16, we formed five project teams in which we are working together agilely during the joint AG year:
The second #DigitalChangeMaker cohort started on the weekend before the HFDcon into its working year. In the context of the prelude meeting, the working group members tackled the big questions: What does the university 4.0 look like? What are the needs of the students of the future? What concrete measures can be taken to meet the challenges of the future? In the course of the weekend, the DigitalChangeMakers worked out the following main topics for themselves: Network and Communication, University 4.0 and Sustainability and Digitialization.
++ More information on the kick-off weekend of the DigitalChangeMakers 2019/20: René Rahrt reports on the kick-off meeting in the HFD blog and presents the project ideas and next steps.+++Here we go! The Digital Changemakers 2019/2020 start their year with a lot of energy and exciting project ideas.
At the invitation of one or more ChangeMaker members, the 2018/19 cohort came together for four meetings in Berlin, Munich, Lüneburg and Brussels. A colourful mixture of intensive workshops, discussion rounds and working groups on their main topics, but also exciting visits outside the university walls, were on the agenda. For a short overview of how the meetings took place, it is worth taking a look at the respective blog entries:
The focus of the #DigitalChangeMaker 2018/19 was a large student survey, which examined the needs of students for digital teaching. The goal of the survey was to find out concretely how student-centered digital-supported studies can be made possible. Therefore, it was determined in which areas students already use digital tools, as well as which of the tools are currently provided by universities and – above all – which should be made available. The results of the survey will be made publicly available and should serve as recommendations for universities with regard to the following questions:
In order to achieve these goals, the participation of as many students as possible was intended. Everyone who is currently studying at a German university was invited to take 15 minutes for the survey. This way, the perspective of the students can also be included in the discussion on digitalization at universities.
In addition to working on their own projects, the ChangeMakers also regularly commented on current digital university policy decisions and tried to anchor a student perspective more firmly in university policy discourses. The HFD connected students with experts from universities, politics, start-ups and civil society, so they can actively and collaboratively shape digital change in education. They were not only points of contact but also wrote their own blog entries. A selection can be viewed here:
HFD facilitates the students’ networking with experts from universities, government, startups and civil society so they can help fashion the digital turn in education.
In addition, students can continue to register with HFD via "Call for Students" if they want to be included in diverse HFD activities.
#DigitalChangemaker 2018/19 – group photo of the first Digital Changemaker cohort