OLDaily, by Stephen Downes

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February 10, 2012

What's the point of education?
Doug Belshaw, The Guardian, February 10, 2012.

I'm not so sure I would have it in me to write an entire article in the form of questions, but I appreciate the experimentation. In this article, Doug Belshaw argues (asks?) that the purpose of education is something worth debating, suggesting that "there a disconnect between what your parents/guardians thought was the purpose of education and what your school believed" and "the 'deep grammar' of schooling (was) different from the explicit aims of the school" (both points, of course, phrased in the form of a question. When I wrote to purpose/ed I wrote that the purpose of an education is personal empowerment, but I will admit as well that I'm enthralled by Josie Fraser's suggestion of the "idea of giving young people access to things 'unimagined and unencountered'." Indeed, I can't imagine a young life without exploration and discovery, each child the hero of his or her ever-widening universe.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Schools, Online Learning]

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“Open Network” Tests
Will Richardson, Weblogg-Ed, February 10, 2012.

I was talking with someone after my talk today about exactly this: as Jonathan Martin’s asked, "We know that content memorization must no longer [be] the goal of our learning programs; what our goal must be is that students can make the most sense of the voluminous and fast-accelerating quantity of information which will forever be at their fingertips, and about which they must be able to think critically, to select, to evaluate, to apply, and to amend as they tackle challenging problems. So why shouldn’t our school-tests evaluate our students ability to do exactly this?"

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Schools, Tests and Testing]

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Is Open and Distance Learning the Key to Quality Higher Education for All?
Nick Moe-Pryce, Educational Technology Debates, February 10, 2012.

This month's topic at Educational Technology Debates is the question, "is open and distance learning the key to quality higher education for all? Surprisingly, the answer isn't simply "yes" but actually involves a good deal of discussion.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Quality, Online Learning]

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files/images/open_2.png, size: 393072 bytes, type:  image/png
Openness: Why learners should know about, and influence, how decisions are made about their learning
George Siemens, elearnspace, February 10, 2012.

Notes and thoughts by George Siemens on the topic of openness from a presentation he gave at TEDxEdmonton (or as I call it, TEDmonton). "My argument," writes Siemens, "is that openness has not been oversold and that increased openness (of content, teaching/learning, analytics, policy, data, and technology) is really the only path forward for reform." As most people can imagine, I am in agreement with that sentiment. In particular, argues Siemens, there is a need for open analytics. He writes, "A few months ago, we released a concept paper on open learning analytics (.pdf). The goal of this paper is to draw attention to the need for algorithmic transparency in order to ensure that context and the needs of individual learners are reflected in teaching and learning."

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Connectivism, Research]

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4 Start-Ups Are Offering Free Online Courses
Nick DeSantis, Chronicle of Higher Education, February 10, 2012.

À propos of what I was talking about in my presentation, the MOOC generation is passing from the 'development' stage to the 'commercialization' stage. At least, that's what I would judge from looking at the activity in the space now.

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E-Learning: Générations
Stephen Downes, Stephen's Web, February 10, 2012.

Text (MS-Word Doc - sorry, Blogger is blocked here) in English and in French of the talk I gave today at Clair 2012 in New Brunswick. The PowerPoint Slides are also available. There's a video recording here. I gave the presentation in French (and if you've wondered whether I've seemed preoccupied recently, that's why). Anyhow, enjoy.
Enclosure: files/docs/e-Learning_Generations_new.docx Size: 80043 bytes, type: application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document
Enclosure: files/audio/clair2012.mp3 Size: 16736880 bytes, type: audio/mpeg

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Google, Blogger]

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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