2018 University of Calgary Conference on Postsecondary Learning and Teaching: Students as Creators, Drivers, Innovators and Collaborators

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The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them. – Albert Einstein Who do we send into the world? A world that faces significant challenges and presents endless opportunities. As teachers, we now recognize that we need to nurture kind, informed and courageous individuals — innovators, creators, collaborators, producers, scholars, designers, builders — capable of understanding multiple perspectives and solving problems in order to drive positive, enduring change. Acknowledgement of this need has triggered a transformative shift in postsecondary education from “teaching” to “learning” in the last 25 years. Formerly viewed as institutions to provide instruction to consumers of information, universities are increasingly seen as places to “produce learning” — where the very purpose of education is to elicit student discovery and construction of knowledge, where success is measured in terms of the quality of student learning and of the students themselves. In other words, an approach to learning that has the student at its core. Building on a body of scholarly work and initiatives from Healey and Harrington (2016), Marquis et al. (2016), Cook-Sather (2014), Barr and Tagg (1995), the Students as Producers Initiative from the University of Lincoln, Vanderbilt University, and others, the 2018 University of Calgary Conference on Postsecondary Learning and Teaching “Students as Creators, Drivers, Innovators and Collaborators ” invites you to explore student-directed learning — and the scholarship, approaches, practices and issues that surround it — in the postsecondary context.