måndag 8 september 2014

New academic year, new courses

It's that time of the year again. Between Sept 1 and the middle of October is the time of the year when I have my heaviest teaching load. As usual, or at least for the third year in a row, both my master's level courses run in parallel and they both started last week. This is always a busy time of the year and the fact that I was away from Sweden for six months means that I am more busy than ever this time around.

The one course I have taught for the longest of time is my fifth-year project course "Future of Media". It runs during the whole autumn term (Sept-Dec), but changes character in mid-October when the students' project groups get going. That means the period up until mid-October will be very busy for me and the period after less so.

This is the 12th time the course is given and it's the 10th time that I am responsible for it. We change themes every year and last year's theme was "The Future of News/News of the Future". This year's theme is "The future of the digital commons, the sharing economy and collaborative consumption". It's a much harder topic to grasp than many more straight-forward futures (book, cinema, computer games, radio etc.), so I gave a lecture earlier today where I outlined my thoughts on the topic (after having prepared for the course by reading half a dozen book). I hope my lecture clarified some things for the students but there is still much work that remains to be done I hope that our excellent series of guest lectures will help.

The second course is mine and Elina's course on "Sustainability and Media Technology". We give it for the third time and we noticed that we have given the course quite a big re-haul as most of the lectures have been exchanged this year. This is the course where we played the Carbonopoly/Gasuco game in our classroom last year (we're doing it again this year). It's is also the course that me and Eline have written no less than two scientific papers about (and we plan to write a third paper later this year). New for the year though is the fact that our new ph.d. student Hanna Hasselqvist will help us out in the course; while me and Elina will be responsible for one seminar group each, Hanna will be responsible for the remaining two seminar groups. That will be a great help to us.

All of this teaching means that during the next month I will both be more busy and have less time than usual to write these weekly/bi-weekly blog posts, and, at the same time have more things to write about than usual. We'll see how that turns out.

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