OLDaily, by Stephen Downes

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March 23, 2012

Education as Platform: The MOOC Experience and what we can do to make it better
Stephen Downes, Half an Hour, March 23, 2012.

I've just posted the full text from my presentation 'Education as Platform', the talk I gave in India last week. In this presentation I outline the motivation and design of the massive open online course (MOOC) and then outline a number of criticisms of the form as it has evolved thus far. My argument is that to the extent that a MOOC focuses on content, like a traditional course, i begins to fail. A MOOC should focus on the connections, not the content. I outline some ways of focusing on connections, using connectors. By way of an example, I discuss structured connections such as chess games and budget simulations.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Traditional and Online Courses, Simulations]

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Re-launch of Creative Commons Canada
Jessica Coates, Creative Commons, March 23, 2012.

I'd really be interested to know what went on behind the scenes to produce this: "Today we’re pleased to announce that Athabasca University, BCcampus, and the Samuelson-Glushko Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic have joined together to re-establish a CC affiliate team in Canada. All three organizations will take part in the official relaunch at the Creative Commons Salon Ottawa: Open Data on Friday, March 30." The article explains, "this is not a new affiliate so much as a re-ignition of our existing Canadian community." So the old team of "of volunteers, interns and affiliate leads" has proven inadequate? I'm less sanguine than most about basing Canadian Creative Commons in institutions. I'd rather see an independent organization. And a democratic one.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Canada]

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files/images/fully_guided.PNG, size: 194362 bytes, type:  image/png
Putting Students on the Path to Learning: The Case for Fully Guided Instruction
Richard E. Clark, Paul A. Kirschner and John Sweller, American Educator, March 23, 2012.

Kirschner, Sweller and Clark are up to it again, offering their argument for "fully guided instruction" based on evident that shows that students with no instruction whatsoever learn less efficiently. I don't deal with this in detail, as I have done so before, but it is worth noting the equivocation on "novice student" (which they take to mean "all students") as well as the false dilemma created between "fully guided" and "minimally guided" and the conflation of "worked example" with "fully guided" instruction. The more interesting question is why the American Federation of Teachers' magazine 'American Educator' is dredging up this old argument, along with Barak Rosenshine's Principles of Instruction (the same issue also has Daniel Willingham arguing that the effects of poverty on learning could be mitigated with warmer families and better teachers).

[Link] [Comment][Tags: United States, Online Learning]

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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