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Making Arguments with Data (Lehrfonds FHNW)

Whether we are discussing measures in order to ‘flatten the curve’ in the ongoing pandemic, or what to wear in face of the most recent weather forecast, we make arguments based on patterns and trends observed in data.

What makes these patterns observable? With the project Making Arguments with Data we propose to develop a learning tool, data observatory that enables students to engage with digital information in a critical manner. We will use the data observatory to practice and teach ethics of working with large datasets and designing data representations, as well as to pose wider questions of gender and inclusion. We gained relevant experience in the recently completed SNSF-funded research project Negentropic Explorations of Radio. We programmed and used web-based interfaces to explore a community-ranarchive of radio signals. Inspired by feminist critique of technoscience and recent problematizations of digital literacy, we argued that one can navigate a digital archive in a multi-narrative way. With the Lehrfonds project we propose to develop a teaching strategy based on an accessible tool for practice and critique of datafication and ‘correlationism’ from within. Through teaching formats that enable active engagement with a dataset of a student’s choice, exchange with guest lecturers and outreach to teachers at the HGK, the participants in the project will acquire confidence in making arguments with data.

Institute Experimental Design und Media Cultures (IXDM)

Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz FHNW Hochschule für Gestaltung und Kunst Basel Institute Experimental Design und Media Cultures (IXDM) Hochhaus: D 3.01 Freilager-Platz 1 4142 Münchenstein b. Basel
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