Clare O’Shea provides a fascinating presentation and link to their report, where they have explored what it means to be a student and their relationship with their institution.
In this paper, we report on our exploration of how distance learners construct and describe their relationship with their institution, using visual and narrative methods within a group of 150 students from 35 countries studying on the fully online, distance MSc in E-Learning. Students told the tales of their own ‘arrival’ at Edinburgh at the start of their studies, an ethnographic trope which problematised academic geographies and brought together the ‘concrete’ campus and the ‘distant’ place of study. Students also provided visual and aural data in the form of digital ‘postcards’, creating a vivid sense of the land- and sound-scape of their study environment.
She explains the themes that began to emerge from the project including a sense of place and placelessness.