by Stephen Downes
Jul 22, 2014
Beyond institutions: Stephen Downes at NetworkEDGE
CLT @ LSE,
Jul 21, 2014
This is a response to my talk at the London School of Economics. "Here’s a dedicated anti-establishment guy, who despairs at the capitalist ideology at the core of education; who dislikes that learning is now an industry... of course Downes is no Nietzsche, but there is a certain Nietzschean sentiment in his ideas." Yes there is - what Nietzsche and I share is the Taoist idea that many of the structures and principles we think of as eternal and unchanging are in fact human creations and can be transcended and/or replaced. Of course, I'm no Lao Tzu either. :)
Stephen Downes on the Personal Learning Environment at the LSE
Jul 21, 2014
There's enough in this post to catch my eye for its different perspective (and yes, a perspective I don't agree with):
- first, the proposition that it is "ironic" that I would speak at the London School of Economics about shifting the locus of control from institutions "at one of the great institutions of the social sciences (from whom control might be wrested)," to which I respond in a comment
- the suggestion that PLEs failed because PLEX failed, even though ti was similar to things like the app stores
- a paper framing the questions he would ask me about the personal learning environment, since he and I are both still working on it
- the "technological reifications" of "idealised learning" are becoming "quite common, and becoming increasingly common in education: we should be worried about this"
- the assertion that "Downes is stuck because he's obsessed with learning. Yet, all around him he's confronted by evidence that his learning theories cannot be right (MOOCs)."
All good stuff. Well worth reading.
What "open learning" looks like when it's for kids who need it most
Jul 21, 2014
The advertorial content in this post promoting MIT Media Lab notwithstanding, what Mimi Ito says at the end is exactly right: "True 'disruption' and access beyond the echo chamber of the digital elites requires more than creating sophisticated educational content and building high-end online learning platforms. We need to spend less effort escalating the tech and bandwidth intensiveness of these platforms and more on meeting diverse kids where they are in their local communities with the resources they have on hand."
The Ultimate Directory Of Free Image Sources
Jul 21, 2014
This is exactly what the title says it is. Except, maybe it's not the ultimate list - maybe the penultimate? - but it's the best I've seen. Need free images? Try this site. And if you need to edit images online (maybe you're stuck with a Mac or iPhone) then this post reviews three top image editing sites. As usual (and as always) cloud applications like this suffer from upload speed limitations on typical internet service providers (this is something that will have to improve for a fully interactive web).
My Very Own Voyant Workshop
Jul 21, 2014
What's interesting about this item - aside from the fact that you can play with it - is that it signifies how people will be able to run their own analytics tools themselves on their own servers. Here's the item text: "a workshop on My Very Own Voyant. The workshop focused on how to run VoyantServer on your local machine. This allows you to run Voyant locally... You can download VoyantServer and read instructions here." Voyant basically takes text or URLs and analyzews word frequency, producing a word cloud. It does more as well, but you'll have to play with it.
Youth Voice and Positive Identity-Building Practices: The Case of ScienceGirls
Jrène Rahm, Audrey Lachaîne, Ahlia Mathura,
Canadian Journal of Education,
Jul 20, 2014
The current issue of the Canadian Journal of Education is focused on youth voices inside and outside of education. I especially appreciate the latter focus; as I commented on Friday during my talk, learning takes place every conscious moment and the social environment is at least as important as the classroom in determining educational outcomes. This this essay (in situ) on the Science Girls: "in ScienceGirls, we have a choice; we choose the themes and subthemes, whether it is for the newsletter or the science fair project, so we have more choices. We make decisions by ourselves; it helps us develop our personal curiosity, autonomy and independence." How important is that, not just to science learning, but learning in general? See also the article Science isn’t just what we learn in school by Allison J. Gonsalves.
Five Steps to Making Your Content Mobile Ready
Jul 20, 2014
Some good stuff in this article on adapting your learning content to mobile delivery, including a nice table listing the impacts of different media on mobile devices. Performance support was the leading application, followed by videos and assessments. Virtual classrooms and course modules were at the bottom. Also, there's the observation that "the mobile delivery of learning content does not need to be a monolithic event. It can come in phases, just like adoption," which I think is a good point. There's more; if you're interested in mobile learning this is a good post.
Fusion 2014 – Unconference and Day One Recap
All The Young (edu)Punks,
Jul 19, 2014
I want to include this post because it's such a clear example of marketing fail. Jon Kruithof attended the D2L Fusion conference and so was there for the John Baker keynote announcing the name change. First, he gets the name wrong - Brightside, Brightspace, what's the difference (I confess, I had to look it up to write this post, else I would have written Brightstream). But second, he settles into the natural abbreviation for it. You know, like how Desire2Learn becomes D2L. And Brightspace? BS. Oh my.
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