LD@3: Special Collection Artefacts in Learning Development

Media Type: Slides
Resource Duration: 60 minutes
Number of downloads: 0

Since 2016, we have been working collaboratively across our respective institutions to develop a teaching method for use in a variety of Learning Development contexts, underpinned by Object-Based Learning (OBL) with historic artefacts, a pedagogic approach originating in Museum Education.

There is already a large body of literature demonstrating the pedagogic value of historic artefacts and OBL more widely in Higher Education (see e.g. Chatterjee and Hannan, 2015; Hardie, 2015; German and Harris, 2017). We draw on this literature to suggest that well-established practices in museum and arts-based education, such as interrogating objects and images and meaning making, have the potential to ignite students’ curiosity and enhance understanding and development of important academic practices that underpin learning in Higher Education, particularly those that are more abstract, such as criticality, creative thinking, questioning, and positionality. We argue that this enhanced understanding and development can then be transferred to new learning contexts that our students encounter within and beyond their disciplines.

In this interactive workshop, participants will experience OBL through a hands-on activity with Special Collection artefacts from the University of Northampton Archives and Special Collections. The presenters will share examples of how this teaching method has been used in different Learning Development contexts in their own practice and participants will then have the opportunity to reflect on their experience of the activity and the potential value of special collection artefacts and OBL for their own practice.


  • Chatterjee, H., and Hannan, L. (eds.). (2015) Engaging the Senses: Object-Based Learning in Higher Education. London: Routledge
  • German, S. and Harris, J. (2017) ‘Agile Objects’, Journal of Museum Education, 42(3), pp. 248-257
  • Hardie, K. (2015) Innovative pedagogies series: Wow: The power of objects in object-based learning and teaching. Available at: https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/system/files/kirsten_hardie_final.pdf [Accessed: 7 November 2019]


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Additional Resource Information

View resources by author(s): Maria Kukhareva, Katherine Koulle

Institution(s): University of Bedfordshire, University College London

Event Date: 24/04/2020

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