All posts by clb127

Join us for phone free friday

CC O Image by Anja🤗#helpinghands #solidarity#stays healthy🙏 from Pixabay

What’s the first thing you use your cell phone for in the morning? Is it to wake you up? Check the time or the weather? Check your messages? We are living in an increasingly interconnected digital world and our phones are entwined in our daily lives. As researchers, teachers, students, and for some of us parents in the DefLab we know that digital technologies can lead to both positive and negative outcomes.

One of the ways to create balance in our online and offline lives is to become mindful about how we use digital technologies and learn how to manage our behavior. We often worry about young people’s digital habits but do we as adults adequately reflect on our own practices?

That’s why the UCDefLab is taking part in the global phone-free day challenge on Friday – 19th March and we’d like YOU to join us! Sign up to the challenge and/or volunteer to take part in research documenting your experience of “mindful phone usage”.

Here are some of our idea’s about how to manage your phone usage.

Turn off or mute your notifications.
Do a spring clean and get rid of unused apps.
Store your phone out of sight in a draw or bag at work & home.
Don’t take your phone to bed.
CC By Icons from

What do you do? Share your tips on how you manage your digital welbeing.

Student experiences of online learning during the pandemic

The DeFLab is involved in the Students Experiences of Online Learning – SOLE – project. This research is focused on what we can learn from Aotearoa |New Zealand university students’ experiences of online learning as a result of the shift to Emergency Remote Learning and Teaching (ERLT) during the pandemic. We are interested in the perspectives and lived experiences of students and have conducted a survey of over 1000 students and focus groups of close to 50 students. 

Cheryl Brown has reflected on students’ experiences in a Conversation article “What do students need in the age of lockdown learning?” and the SOLE team has shared some initial thoughts on the project in ASCILITEs Technology Enhanced Learning Blog. 

There is no doubt that research-informed analysis on emergency remote education is critically important in our current global context. Especially since we know we will be facing these challenges globally for some time.

Watch this space for more updates as the project progresses.