I was thinking about the term curation today – the word is being used a lot in the context of streamlining/encouraging/promoting the integration of a mix of learning materials – including open educational resources – into curriculum. I’ve seen it defined in a variety of ways, most of which involved finding, collecting, organizing and sharing resources. I ran across an interesting definition/discussion of digital content curation on a social media-focused blog that places it in the “experience” bucket in a way that I had not seen before (and like!):
“A curator [is*] someone who creates a specific experience using found objects and contextualizes those objects within a limited space. A curator not only collects and interprets, but houses that work to create unique experience.”
The idea that we (educators) create a specific experience really resonates with me. It underscores the need for us to provide context for learning resources. If I am going to ask my students to watch a video, for example, in most cases I want to ensure that they understand why I have chosen that video – it may be that it helps them visualize a critical element of a particular process, or possibly provides a different example of something they have already seen… Regardless, to enhance their learning, knowing why the resource is meaningful – our pedagogical intention in their using a resource – is important.
So curation is not just about finding and organizing learning resources, it is also about creating the contextual frame for the learning experience.
Food for thought.
*I added the word is in this sentence.