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October 21, 2011

Connectivist Learning: How new technologies are promoting autonomy and responsibility in education
Stephen Downes, October 21, 2011, ,

In this presentation I discuss the topic of autonomy as it relates to connectivism. I begin by making a case for autonomy, and then apply the four-factor model of autonomy to connectivist practice.


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Visitors & Residents: The Video
David S. White, TALL blog, October 21, 2011.

A resource I'm using in my talk tomorrow is this page from David S. White on the 'visitors and residents' metaphor he and Alison Le Cornu used in response to Prensky's widely popular but oft-refuted model of the digital native and digital immigrant. The video is supported by a Prexi presentation outlining the concept. While the concept is used to describe a person's familiarity and engagement with the internet, I use it more broadly to talk about their engagement with any subject matter.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Gaming, Video]

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Knowledge Building: Theory, Pedagogy, and Technology
Marlene Scardamalia and Carl Bereiter, Cambridge Handbook of the Learning Sciences, October 21, 2011.

files/images/Screen_shot_2011-10-21_at_10.46.45_AM.png, size: 118373 bytes, type:  image/png Good stuff in this article from 2006 on the idea of learning as integration into a community (part of the concept I'm describing in my talk tomorrow). The authors write, "Ours is a knowledge-creating civilization. A growing number of 'knowledge societies', are joined in a deliberate effort to advance all the frontiers of knowledge. Sustained knowledge advancement is seen as essential for social progress of all kinds and for the solution of societal problems... Knowledge building, as elaborated in this chapter, represents an attempt to refashion education in a fundamental way, so that it becomes a coherent effort to initiate students into a knowledge creating culture... In this context, the Internet becomes more than a desktop library and a rapid mail-delivery system. It becomes the first realistic means for students to connect with civilization-wide knowledge building and to make their classroom work a part of it." Exactly! (If the server dies (which it did as soon as I posed the link), here's a summary. See also Stian Haklev on this paper. Finally, I have posted a temporary backup.)

[Link] [Comment][Tags: none]

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The New Unit of Analysis: Networks
Beth Kanter, Beth's Blog, October 18, 2011.

It's an interesting concept. Not simply the idea that networks are "the new unit of analysis," though that is interesting enough. But the idea, caught out of the corner of my eye en passant while reading this item, that networks, instead of companies or other institutions, might be the new unit of funding. But what is the funding mechanism for a network? What governments do now (to my observation) is they fund a company or an organization to host the network (at which time the company or organization keeps the bulk of funding for itself). See also this storify on social impact in a networked world. See also a grantmaker's gathering on networks.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Networks]

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4chan's Chris Poole: Facebook & Google Are Doing It Wrong
Jon Mitchell , ReadWriteWeb, October 18, 2011.

files/images/chrispoole_150.jpg, size: 7360 bytes, type:  image/jpeg Interesting and very likely correct. 4chan's Chris Poole argues that companies like Google and Facebook who are trying to force people into a single identity are misunderstanding the nature of personal identity. "But human identity doesn't work like that online or offline. We present ourselves differently in different contexts, and that's key to our creativity and self-expression. 'It's not 'who you share with,' it's 'who you share as,'' Poole told us. 'Identity is prismatic.'" What that means is that we present ourselves differently in different circumstances. We may, depending on context, want to be viewed as different people - the 'show-no-mercy' World of Warcraft player may be very different from the mild-mannered teacher or librarian. "Twitter does the best job of this" of today's major social networks, Poole said. The platform itself uses handles and allows made-up answers in the real name field. Furthermore, "most of the apps allow multiple accounts. Facebook would never allow this, right?" He says Google Plus is the worst; you don't even get a vanity URL to distinguish yourself, and we all know how Google Plus handles pseudonyms: they delete the accounts. Here's the video of Chris Poole's remarks.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Twitter, Books, Google, Networks]

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Guitar Lesson 5
Dean Shareski, Ideas and Thoughts, October 18, 2011.

Dean Shareski and some of his students are trying to learn things and documenting the results. His guitar lessons are interesting, but I quite like his students' non-traditional learning:

It's interesting that it doesn't matter what they are learning - by documenting their progress, they are not only improving their learning, they are - over time - learning how to learn. And I like what Shareski is doing, modelling the process, and not just talking about it.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Project Based Learning, Online Learning, Ontologies]

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RF11 presentations and videos
Stuart Macdonald, Repository Fringe 2011, October 16, 2011.

From the website: "The multi-tasking EDINA social media guru Nicola Osborne has done a sterling job to bring together all presentations, videos, blog posts and news items from Repository Fringe 2011." There's a lot of content on the site, enough to keep you going for days. "All videos are edited and on YouTube, images are on Flickr and presentations are on SlideShare."

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Flickr, YouTube, Video, Web Logs]

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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