Here I am – late with the final entry promised to you on that last meet up. The time has not gone in vain as my thoughts from the course have been settling down somewhere in the back of my mind. So I hope you forgive the delay and have the patience to read this to the end.
As many of you, I’m a first time blogger and I’m thankful that in your entries you’ve commented on the blogging and how that has affected your learning. There is a first time for everything in our lives, and this was the first time for us to use the blog as a learning tool in the course. I definitely had the feeling that it had a potential, but I could not anticipate what a great tool it turned out to be! From the teacher perspective it was both gratifying and inspiring to be reading your entries, I especially appreciated how sometimes the entries would anticipate the subject of the lecture-to-come by raising up few questions related to the upcoming topic. This is teacher’s heaven! What more can you wish for? 🙂 Jukka already praised the quality of your entries, which I absolutely agree with. In my opinion, although the blog-as-a-learning-tool has some downsides, the benefits outweighed them in the end. E.g. I’m aware that not everybody felt comfortable sharing their thoughts publicly, and it might have even felt awkward at times – always having to express an opinion after the lecture. But I feel that the obligation to post can in some cases be stimulating to reflect deeper on what has been presented, and at the same time have the unique opportunity for learning what all others are thinking about the same issue. It is not often that you get to read your fellow students’ minds…errrr…thoughts 😉 Good that you took on this blogging challenge and handled it elegantly!
From your feedback we learned that the blogging assignment requires some fine-tuning in terms of number of entries, etc. Thanks for this helpful comments! I’m happy you seemed to appreciate the blogging as much as we did. And I’m happy my first-time-blogging happened within the thoughtful and friendly atmosphere of this experimental course 🙂
Regarding the videos, I want to say that you surprised me – honestly! First of all, the amplitude of topics was impressive, but also the ways in which the groups have approached the assignment – choosing their own style, handling the openness of the assignment and finally performing with enthusiasm and thoughtfulness. I know it was difficult! And I know many of you have thought you don’t have sufficient skills for completing the assignment. But you did it! And as I have never created a video myself, I want to say to you – you have just exceeded your teacher (well, one of them) 🙂 I appreciate your efforts and your we-can-do-it attitudes.
Finally, I want to share with you that sustainable consumption has been my topic of passion for a long time. I can talk and talk about it, but what you might have noticed from the lectures – it is the kind of topic where you rarely get any straightforward and simple answers. In my teaching experience, I have come across some frustrations from students: if you take a course about sustainability and about sustainable consumption, maybe you expect to simply learn what it is, and how to tell wrong from right. But you have admitted this many times in your blog entries too – that sustainability in general is not a black-and-white topic, neither is it a green-and-grey one. I think it is more important that one starts to think about these topics and reflect them upon her/his own life. Maybe you have heard this before: sustainability is not an endpoint, it is a journey.
So, I thank you for taking one leg of this journey together with me, Jukka and Frank. And I give my warm thanks to Jukka and Frank who have contributed so profoundly to marry the topics of sustainability, marketing and consumption (note the commas!). Their expertise was invaluable, as were your comments and thoughts during the lectures, in your blogs and in your heads. Thanks for the fruitful atmosphere and the willingness and openness to learn and discuss.
best wishes for your journey 🙂