by Stephen Downes
Jan 02, 2017
Maybe things work differently for major news media. Perhaps they still believe they need Facebook. From my perspective, when I stopped posting on Facebook at the end of last summer, my visits increased substantially. Facebook was neither showing my content nor referring traffic, yet people thought I was posting on Facebook and didn't look elsewhere. Meanwhile, Facebook started suggesting I pay for advertising, and at the same time they started flooding my news stream with advertising. If news media did what I did, their Facebook problem would be solved. But they're like the boy and the filberts. If they want to escape the trap, they have to let go a bit, but their greed won't let them. Image: itsaperfectstory
It's not clear who actually authored this article, but it reads like Clark Quinn, so I'll go with that. In any case, the author adopts an approach similar to Daniel Dennett's intentional stance, postulating different 'levels' at which we can talk about the cognitive science behind learning. The most basic level is at the neural level, and here "its core, learning is about (forming and) strengthening the connections between certain neurons." No problem. Where things become problematic is at the next level, the cognitive level, where "learning and instruction is about designed action and guided reflection." I think that this account has a lot of problems. Finally, "At a higher level, one might consider social learning." It's a good article overall, which is why I'm passing it along.
One of the problems of online earning is that it can be a very solitary activity. Educators have addressed this problem by creating cohorts - groups of people who travel through the course together. In the physical world, this is easy: set a class time and place. Online, it is more difficult, especially if you are dealing with large numbers of students. People learn at different speeds. People participate at different levels. These can lead to a single person being the only active learner in their cohort. So it's a conundrum.
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