One of the first projects within the framework of Material Story Lab at AAU. The big issue that this project evolves around is ‘Space, form, materiality and pedagogy – how can we deliver PBL more creatively?’The projecttries to provide a qualified answer to the question by two concrete and very resent examples of integrating creative methods in the PBL pedagogy at Aalborg University. The two examples are respectively from the Bachelor program and the Candidate program of Communication Studies. The examples uniquely provide insight into how such a creative take on PBL process can be delivered through a so-called ‘Material Story lab’ (Strand 2012, 2014) and the possibilities and the advantages and disadvantages of this particular creative take on PBL Material Story Lab works with material stories (Strand 2012) as an innovative learning concept, where focus is on enhancing – and harvesting – from paying attention to the creative and material aspect of the ‘knowledge in the making’ (Ellsworth, 2005) of the PBL process. This entails actively making use of space, body and materiality as co-creaters of learning, development and change. As such this includes as learning agencies the decórofthelearning space –the solid walls, and mobile walls, and other furnishing, the students bodies - bodily senses and bodily needs such as pauses and food, and various forms of seating and the artifacts -various creative materials provided or produced as multimodal 2D and 3D con-figurations of a specific thematic or problematic. As such these configurations provide for speculative designs (Mitter, 2006) as shelters ofexposure(Ellsworth 2005) for various problem-formulations. The first example is from 2011 and related to a project called ‘Material Story Lab - PBL 3.0/3D’, which was conducted in relation to 1st Semester of the Bachelor program of Humanistic Informatics. Here the pedagogical experiment aimed at integrating space, body and materiality (artifacts) as supplementary pedagogical means that fused different experiential and presentational modes of knowing (Heron & Reason 2006) with the more common propositional and practical knowledge. The learning space and the artifacts used, as well as the student’s bodily engagements with these became the entry-point though which creativity was embedded. As such the Material Story Lab draws on an extended epistemology; the onto-epistemology coined as ’Apparatus of Material Storytelling’ (Strand, 2010, 2012)
2D story board and 3D artifacts produced during the workshop
The second example is from 2013 and relates to a project supported by 'Entreprenørskabsfonden', where the course-teachings at the project-module of the candidate program in 8 sem. communication studies were converted into a four week camp with workshop-based teaching that were oriented toward and organized around real-life cases of communicative challenges for six different organizations across parameters of private/public, small/large, traditional/alternate. Once again the workshop-setting with artifacts and engaged bodily action were the entry-point to embed a creative take on the PBL process. However this time various other narrative elements were provides as well in order to enhance the innovative and entrepreneurial aspect of learning. The camp was narrated as a firm ‘Agential processes ’ with the employment of 64 people (the students), two managers (two teachers that followed it through), and six customers with actual problems to be dealt with.
2D artifacts produced during the workshops for the case Randers FC