by Stephen Downes
Apr 03, 2015
5 Stages of Workplace Learning (Revisited Again)
Learning in the Social Workplace,
People planning workplace development programs should take a version of this chart and make it their roadmap for the next five or ten years. It basically describes the transition from a dependence on formal learning to a deployment of informal learning, and it also maps the sift from centralized control to decentralized control. Jane Hart writes, "organizations already operating in Stage 5 understand that although formal training will continue to have a part to play in workplace learning, it is more important in today’s fast-moving workplace to support the continuous learning and performance improvement of teams and individuals. This is what will really make the difference to how the organisation as a whole learns, grows and thrives."
Can You Trust Your Ears? (Audio Illusions)
Optical illusions are common. Audio illusions are less so. But in a set of examples this short video show how we can hear the same tone or sound in different ways. For example, the McGurk effect demonstrates a case where the same sound is perceived as either 'bar' or 'far' depending on what you're looking at. Another effect, the tritone paradox, causes people to hear the same set of sounds differently, as either risinmg or descending tones. This shows how much context and prior experience (some effects even vary based on geography and language from infancy).
Why More Education Won’t Fix Economic Inequality
New York Times,
The only real way to address income inequality is to directly address income inequality. And in my view, most education 'reform' efforts are tactics designed to obscure this fact. "See? We are doing something about inequality. We are focusing on testing and educational outcomes." No, it doesn't work that way. Education empowers, and it liberates, but it does not by itself solve systemic inequalities in society (and when viewed that way, we have to ask, how could it?). As this report says, "more education would be great news for middle and lower-income Americans, increasing their pay and economic security. It just isn’t up to the task of meaningfully reducing inequality, which is being driven by the sharp upward movement of the very top of the income distribution."
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