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Focus Live - What is it? - The Open College of the Arts

To find out more details about the transfer to The Open University see A New Chapter for OCA.

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Focus Live – What is it?

Focus Live

As part of a series on group work developments across the college, we invited the Focus Live group to blog about their current activity and direction.

Focus Live — What is it?     

Focus Live is a student-led bimonthly meet on Sunday evenings at 6pm UK time. Meets are friendly, open and informal, focusing on all lens based practice and creative processes. It is open to all students at all levels. 

Can you tell us more?     

It is an informal peer feedback and review virtual platform. It can add a depth and layer of reflective practice which can aid the development of work, not just visually but also in terms of the contextualization of work and our research practices. It is a one-hour session and has space for up to four agendas. Historically the group uses the OCA Discussion Forum threads to add and share items for the agenda but Focus Live is looking to embrace Padlets over time. Focus live is at an exciting stage of its development as the OCA pushes distance learning and collaboration not just between peers but also peers and tutors. The next few months will be interesting as we look to introduce different tutors to moderate the group throughout the year.

What would you say to someone wishing to join?

Focus Live can be a scary thought and daunting to begin with, but there are no expectations and no pressure to contribute. The environment is relaxed, friendly, informal, and open. Of course, it would be great for peers to actively engage because of the value it can bring to our studies and working practice. Like all things that we do which are beyond our comfort zone can often bring the most benefits, the earlier we expose ourselves to peer feedback/ review the more we can grow in confidence and build our knowledge, understanding and expand on the written work we produce in a verbal manner and to our very growing visual vocabulary.

What do students get out of attending?

As students we write about contemporary practitioners and artists, we write about our own work but Focus Live can aid us to learn how to talk about our own, and others work. It can develop our critical thinking, understanding and knowledge, verify and validate our thinking but also challenge it, bring a level of personal growth; we can grow in confidence, connect with others, form networks, share experiences, teach, and learn from one another. Focus Live is a test bed to try out ideas and work at any stage, share thoughts and ideas, to question and to discuss other topics and subjects, a place for discourse. It is a place for all students at any stage on any level with the added value and knowledge that a wider number tutors brings to the group. Although this group is aimed at all levels, students at earlier stages in their studies may find this particularly beneficial.   

How can students find out more and join?

Join us on the 21st February with guest tutor Jayne Taylor, see here for more details. 

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Posted by author: Alan Fletcher

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