February 3, 2012
Embracing Uncertainty and the strange problem of habituation
Dave’s Educational Blog, February 3, 2012.
Dave Cormier writes about Rhizomes and uncertainty. "The rhizome is uncertainty. That doesn’t mean it ‘isn’t’. It has no start and no ending. It is complex… and as such, it resists definition. As a model for learning, it resists ‘core principles’ or ‘final outcomes’. It is an ongoing process of growing, of surprise and of change." Martin Weller comments on this model in relation to the way experts are able to remember detailed aspects of their experience; "experts don't know they do this, but it's a by-product, or rather a means, of expertise." All very well, but "if it's unintentional, undirectional, informal and accidental then is there much we as educators can say about it other than 'that's interesting'?" I think that's a fallacy - I think that our inability to 'manage' something doesn't mean we have nothing useful to say about it.
[Link] [Comment][Tags: Experience]
Farewell to the Enterprise LMS, Greetings to the Learning Platform
e-Literate, February 3, 2012.
"We are going," writes Phil Hill, "from an enterprise LMS market to a learning platform market." The difference between an LMS and a learning platform is that the latter "does not contain all the features in itself and is based on cloud computing – multi-tenant, software as a service (SaaS)." Definitely have a look at the article for a number of links to examples. "Another trend that is becoming apparent is that many of the new offerings are not attempting to fully replace the legacy LMS, at least all at once."
[Link] [Comment][Tags: none]
Flight 1549: Expertise and how it gets there
Dave's Whiteboard, February 3, 2012.
A topic that really interests me is expertise. How do we become 'expert' and what does it look like? Dave Ferguson takes a look at what was arguably expert performance, Chesley Sullenberger's "successful ditching" of a passenger aircraft in the Hudson River (which maps to another topic that really interests me, flight). What's interesting is that there was no training specific to low-altitude engine loss and no time to consult the ditching checklest en route to the river. So expertise does not consist of 'training for that' but rather learning that can be applied in rtandom situatrions. Sullenberger says, "one way of looking at this might be that for 42 years, I’ve been making small, regular deposits in this bank of experience, education, and training. And on January 15 the balance was sufficient so that I could make a very large withdrawal."
[Link] [Comment][Tags: Experience]
2017: RIP, OER?
iterating toward openness, February 3, 2012.
Before we get a little overly exuberant about the ascendence of OERs, writes David Wiley, we need to look at what's happening in the education technology space. "Can you name a single OER project that does assessment at all (and I don’t mean PDFs of quizzes)? Can you name one that does diagnostic assessment or handles mastery in any meaningful way? ... Open education currently has no response to the coming wave of diagnostic, adaptive products coming from the publishers." The crux, says Wiley, is that if it took $100 million to get to where we are in OER, how much will it take to get to that next level?
Of course, the skill set required to make OERs is completely different from the skill set required to make educational software. Thus were is virtually no overlap between the OER community and, say, projects like OSCATS (Open Source Computerized Adaptive Testing System), Concerto, or even the older IRT-Computerized Adaptive Testing, to name a few. So I think the work is being done in the community, but most such work, it forms its own community, and doesn't evolve out of an existing community. But I don't want to downplay Wiley's point - it is absolutely essential that we look at the next generation of opnline learning, and not merely at replicating textbooks online.
[Link] [Comment][Tags: Open Educational Resources, Books, Project Based Learning, Google, Assessment, Online Learning]
Let’s make OpenPhilosophy.org!
Weblog, February 3, 2012.
Jonathan Gray writes, "A little while ago I posted some ideas for a project called OpenPhilosophy.org, which would enable users to transcribe, translate, annotate and create collections of philosophical texts which have entered the public domain... the project has secured some funding from JISC, who champion digital technology for use in higher education in the UK... The project will develop an open source platform called TEXTUS, which will enable users to create, manage and interact with collections of texts." Related: read the full-text comments from Occupy Philosophy: Chad Kautzer, Charles Mills, Darrell Moore, Annika Theim, and Jennifer Uleman.
[Link] [Comment][Tags: Great Britain, Project Based Learning, Open Source, Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC), Metadata]
Can Humanities Undergrads Learn to Code?
NITLE Logo National Institute for Technology in Liberal Education, February 3, 2012.
I would never have though this would be an issue, but apparently "a recurring motif along the lines that coding (markup and programming) is so difficult that undergraduates trained in the humanities cannot learn it quickly or successfully." I must be a polymath then, having spent time coding pretty much through the whole of my philosophy undergrad. Or maybe the motif is just wrong. "The skills most humanities majors have mastered as part of their academic training, such as formulating research questions and reading critically, carry over easily and naturally into the world of humanities computing." And vice versa.
[Link] [Comment][Tags: Research, Academia]
Creative Thinking – Joanna Maxwell
One Change a Day, February 3, 2012.
Creative Thinking by Joanna Maxwell is a short but beautifully presented slide show outlining four major steps to cultivating your creativity. It is also sport-on -- these are tips I use on a daily basis and which have served me remarkably well:
- be curious
- make connections
- challenge yourself
- cultivate your ideas
[Link] [Comment][Tags: none]
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