Informal Learning - Let's Get Real

Tony Karrer, eLearning Technology, Jul 17, 2006
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I have a lot of stuff today, stuff I've been saving as well as some items I hunted down.
Tomorrow I am presenting online at e/merge 2006 - Learning Landscapes in Southern Africa, and I have decided to offer my thoughts on how we can know E-Learning 2.0 will work, indeed, is working. The links today almost all apply to that question and will show up in my talk tomorrow.

Tony Karrer writes, "I'm becoming convinced that folks in the informal learning realm are quite willing to live with 'free range' learning. It's way too touchy-feely and abstract for me. If this stuff is important, then I want to:


  • Know that it will work

  • Know why it works

  • Know that it's repeatable."

He is reacting to George Siemens, who writes, "We have a rough end target (solve this problem, innovate, adapt, etc.)...and we really don't have a clear process (other than teams, meetings, and emerging collaborative spaces)." I don't think Siemens is right, really, but explaining why - and meeting Karrer's challenge - takes a bit of doing. More on this tomorrow.

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