Why Personal Learning
Stephen Downes, Feb 23, 2018, Moodle Moot 2018, York University
In this presentation I examine gthe difference between personal and personalized learning, show how this informs the design of the personal learning environment, and draw from that the reasons for preferring personal learning.
Intended to be the next step in the evolution of Jupyter Notebooks (previously), Jupyter Lab is " an interactive development environment for working with notebooks, code and data... JupyterLab enables you to use text editors, terminals, data file viewers, and other custom components side by side with notebooks in a tabbed work area." Nice.
Good article about (what we hope is) the changing role of IT departments in the institution (your mileage may vary). Says the abstract: "The role of IT departments has evolved to one that is increasingly defined by a simple concept: who has control. To be successful in the changing landscape of technologies and user needs, IT will need to become a partner rather than a gatekeeper."
The content in this post is pretty light but I liked the juxtoposition of least restrictibve environment (LRE), co-teaching, Friere's banking model, and teaching learners to understand how thinking works. " All learners deserve to be valued as powerful thinkers, and our students with disabilities need experiences that recognize and communicate to them their potential and abilities – not experiences that force them into a process of learning that is completely detached and only serves to accentuate a deficit view of themselves as learners."
This article has one of the best tech put-downs I've ever read: "Twitter’s backend was initially built on Ruby on Rails, a rudimentary web-application framework that made it nearly impossible to find a technical solution to the harassment problem. If Twitter’s co-founders had known what it would become, a third former executive told me, 'you never would have built it on a Fisher-Price infrastructure.'" Oh, ouch! But not wrong, right? beyond this dig, this is a pretty good article as a whole, with some good insights into the last decade of tech innocation.
I once gave am presentation on the use of space as an analogy for learning environments, so this article resonates with me. " We will need to develop new methods and frameworks for analysis which takes into consideration how we conceive, perceive and enact our digital spaces and how this impacts on our practices and approaches to teaching and learning within these spaces," writes Michelle Harrison. And " we will also need to go beyond the metaphor of the network to look at the material infrastructures that provide and determine access, asking how these spaces are constructed, who owns them and how they then shape our educational spaces."
“The numbers suggest MOOCs are, in fact, here to stay,” said Arshad Ahmad, vice-provost, teaching and learning, at McMaster University. As Diane Peters notes, " There are more MOOCs than ever, and some courses are indeed massive, with enrolments in the hundreds of thousands." No, they did not replace universities in ten years, but nobody seriously expected that. And MOOCs bring other things to the table. “It’s a collaboration, it’s a partnership. It’s not a colonial model,” said Dr. Ahmad. “When you design a MOOC, it’s all about the audience, that’s how teaching is changing.”
" It will soon be obvious that half of our job tasks can be done better at almost no cost by AI and robots," writes Kai-Fu Lee. "This will be the fastest transition humankind has experienced, and we’re not ready for it." If we look at China, he writes, we can see where some of this is headed already. "P eople there carry no cash. They pay all their utility bills with their phones. They can do all their shopping on their phones. You get off work and open an app to order food. By the time you reach home, the food is right there." Related: Umair Haque, Are We Ready for a Post-Work World?
I do pay attention (and always have) to diversity in the references in this newsletter and in my work in general. But I do it a bit differently than suggested here. In one sense, I have to - over the years I've referenced thousands of authors. So I can't spend time figuring out wherether they're gay or black or indigneous - how could I? It's not like people put race/gender/orientation/identity metadata in their posts.
I can and do ensure some gender balance, based on what I can tell from the author's name. Beyond that, I ensure diversity by focusing on diverse sources and diverse oplaces. I try to internationalize. I look for writing from India and Africa and Estonia. It's not perfect. I'm rooted in my own community in Canada, as I should be. And I'm limited to content written in English, which means people from diverse backgrounds need to make an extra effort to be included (eventually, with decent auto-translation, that will change).
Finally, diversity isn't simply about language, gender, colour, and orientation. It includes these but includes so much more. I see people who are marginalized because of poverty, because of geography, becuse of disability, because of occupation, because of nationality, because of socialization, because of age, because of ugliness, because of education, because of size, because of musicality, because of faith, because of introversion, and so much more. These are all important to me.
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Copyright 2018 Stephen Downes Contact: firstname.lastname@example.orgThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.