This is Our Playground: Recognising the value of students as innovators

Alan Hook, Oonagh Murphy

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


‘What we need is a hybrid, a fusion of the critical stance of cultural theory with the constructive attitude of the visual designer. This new media critic that we are imagining wants to make something, but what she wants to make will lead her viewers or readers to reevaluate their formal and cultural assumptions’. - Bolter, J. D. (2004) “Theory and Practice of New Media Studies”On the 25th April 2012 the University of Ulster hosted a hack day in the Ulster Museum for students on the Interactive Media Arts BA (hons) and Museum Studies MA, this event saw students develop innovative interactive experiences within the context of a traditional museum setting. Students worked in teams with mentors to develop playful ludic interactions which worked with (and sometimes against) the museum's collections and displays.The interactive experiences that students developed are designed to question the notion of play in the museum, recontextualising the collections and gallery spaces to create new modes for the public to investigate and interrogate the spaces of the museum as an institution and develop new dialogues with the exhibits.These ‘experiences’ act as a tangible example of how time constrained prototyping can facilitate innovative responses to museum collections and presents a case for museums to develop and implement interactive experiences in a faster and more efficient manner. The Hack Day marked the culmination of ‘This is our Playground’ a semester long collaborative research project which explored interdisciplinary teaching and practice, through a series of workshops on digital literacy and designing for the cultural sector. As a result of this project National Museums Northern Ireland has begun to explore new ways to engage with students, and is in the process of developing an interactive media project that will build on the outcomes produced during the Hack Day.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationUnknown Host Publication
Place of Publicationonline
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 17 Apr 2013
EventMW2013: Museums and the Web 2013 - Portland, Oregon
Duration: 17 Apr 2013 → …


ConferenceMW2013: Museums and the Web 2013
Period17/04/13 → …


Dive into the research topics of 'This is Our Playground: Recognising the value of students as innovators'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this