Better Networked Learning

Michael Feldstein, ALT Newsletter, Apr 24, 2007
Commentary by Stephen Downes

Michael Feldstein writes, "VLE designs tend to be relatively lightly informed by praxis. Likewise, networked learning practitioners are limited in terms of envisioning how the VLE should work because they often do not know what is possible" (Aside: I dislike the word praxis - it's just the word practice with an attitude). He suggests that this communication might be accomplished by bridging two linguistic forms (neither of which I like, particularly), use cases and pattern languages (which in turn can inform an organized collection of best practices). "We can translate theoretical research into empirically validated best practices through design patterns," writes Feldstein. "Suppose further that we can then translate those best practices into software design through use cases. If so, then we will have a complete process for driving learning and cognition findings into the fabric of our networked learning programs, both in teaching methods and in software design." I'm uneasy with this - it's hard to articulate why, exactly - but I don't think software should be designed to 'do things' so much as it should be designed to 'create capacity'. I know that's not a very clear distinction. But it's like the difference between 'process' and 'creation'. Via Seb Schmoller.
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