Universities and their Function

Whitehead, A.N. 1929. Universities and their Function. In The Aims of Education and other essays. The Free Press. pp91-101

As my refection in this post I want to write some keywords and quotes that stand out from this reading. Perhaps they can for some sort of narrative.

  • the scope of this article: problems/issues that Universities encountered
  • business schools representing one of ‘the newer development of university activities.’
  • purpose of university ‘is that it preserves the connection between knowledge and zest of life’

I like the view that the universities supposed to act as the connection between the knowledge and the life by connecting the old and the young through learning. The notion of imagination and creativity seems crucial to this connection.

  • imagination
  • excitement, imagination, consideration = transformation of knowledge.
  • ‘a fact is no longer a bare fact: it is invested with all its possibilities’ hover ‘imagination is not to be divorced from the facts: it is a way of illuminating the facts’
  • ‘the task of a university is to weld together imagination and experience’

I would like to believe that the role of the university is to provide the ground for constant interaction with knowledge through imagination and connect it to the life experience (give the life a ‘flavour’).

  • universities originated in an obscure and rather unnoticed way (natural growth)
  • the universities ‘should function in the preparation for an intellectual career’ they can do that ‘by promoting the imaginative consideration of the various general principles underlaying that career.
  • ‘the proper function of a universities the imaginative acquisition of knowledge’

I find this last statement the key element in the purpose of universities. Obtaining the knowledge (and not only the knowledge but also experience environment in which the acquisition of knowledge occurs) creatively seems to be fundamental. Perhaps considering the right teaching ad learning methods that allow the ‘imaginative acquisition of knowledge  is critical to the function of universities.

  • ‘Imagination cannot be acquired once and for all’
  • ‘the learned and imaginative life is a way of living’
  • ‘Do you want your teachers to be imaginative? hen encourage them to research’
  • research


A Learning Model for the Future

Aoun, J. 2017. A Learning Model for the Future. In Higher education in the age of artificial intelligence. MIT Press. pp45-75

key points

  • technological skills among most desirable on the planet
  • historic role of education in elevating people to the next level of economic development
  • future will depend more from us therefore we need to demand more from education
  • ‘an education for the digital age needs to focus not just on technology and understanding what technology can do but also what it cannot do – at least for now and perhaps never’.

I find the above statement close to my way of thinking about technology in learning and teaching and  I do see the role of technology in education as fundamental however not as a tool or subject to replace the other methods that can be implemented in teaching and learning. Thinking creatively seems to be of of the element that is debatable as to what degree technology can ‘think’ imaginatively.

  • ‘education should cultivate out creativity’

it prompts a question about being actually able to tech creativity…


PG Cert

My name is Kasia Piechota and I have been in my current role of Associate Lecturer over 4 years. I currently teach on BA(Hons) Spatial Design and BA(Hons) Design for Branded Spaces at London College of Communication. Prior to this I have worked in art and design sector teaching on FE level. I also have experience teaching on HNC and HND design courses.

In my role at LCC I work on variety of modules including Design Skills and Creative Practice, Professional Practice, Collaborative Design (which includes collaborating with BA Design Management and Cultures students) and Spatial Design Major Project. This invloves leading some units as well as co-running different modules.  Various teaching methods are implemented through these units from seminars, group workshops, pin-ups to full cohort lectures and one-to-one tutorials.  I am also involved in assessments and individual units planning.

Outside of my teaching practice I work as a freelance spatial designer. This role involves working with various clients and delivering diverse design projects. I always try to bring my own professional experience into my teaching. By undertaking a PG Cert I am hoping to extend my teaching methods and learn how to adapt my diverse professional and teaching experience appropriately to various cohorts. I would also like to explore student-centred learning and bring it into my teaching practice.