These are not technical specifications but rather recommendations for rules and practices to govern behaviour in virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) spaces (collectively known as 'XR'). Past experience in other virtual spaces such as discussion boards and social networks shows that disruptive and antisocial behaviour can escalate quickly. This document from the XR Association offers recommendations to help prevent that. "VR users may experience abusive behavior in a more bodily or visceral fashion. When building product tools, we should aim to create strong protection and reporting mechanisms, not diminish them, for a safer, more positive experience for everyone," it says.
The online educated or online indoctrinated human? Discourse analysis as a method to study ideologies disseminated by online courses
Iuliia Platonova, Ignatius G.P. Gous, HTS Theological Studies, Paperity, 2019/12/27
Starting from the perspective that "implicit ideology is an unavoidable feature of pedagogy" this article endeavours "to sensitise and empower lecturer and learner alike to use the tools of discourse analysis to evaluate the possible ideological content of online courses." Think of it as James Paul Gee meets Henry Giroux. The authors argue "visual literacy and critical thinking are competencies of the contemporary learner, helping him or her learn from online courses in the most effective way." Maybe so - learning online is certainly not the same as simply reading or listening. But I wish this article had gone into more depth as to why this is so, and especially the idea that "when we see images, we easily become overwhelmed with emotions and may simply become bombarded with several ideas appearing at once... we lose control and systemic understanding of the facts described, becoming captivated, moved by visual proofs that look real."
"We don't have to imagine what that more human, more expressive, more valuable web could look like," writes Anil Dash. "We just have to pay attention to the fact that we visit it every day." He cites examples like IMDB, Wikipedia, Snopes and Stack Overflow, and his focus is on "massive, collectively-maintained, curated and organized libraries of communal culture," but I think the vast network of individual web sites (like my own!) are what make these collections possible (just as one of our MOOCs wouldn't exist without all the individual contributions). "We're going to need to imagine models of experiences and communities that could provide a better alternative. There's not going to be a 'Facebook killer'. But there could simply be lots of other sites, that focus on a different, more constructive and generative, set of goals."
This is a good article despite the garish formatting (if you use Firefox you'll want to use the Just Read extension for this one). The main point of the article is that "we don't really know which patterns machine learning algorithms identify as significant." That's because the patterns aren't expressed as rules, and differences that have no meaning to us - changing a few pixels, say - may have a significant impact on the outcome. So we have to ask not only "did the model learn its task well" but also "what else did it learn?"
This short article describes work being one on the UNESCO Qualification Passport, "a standardized document, which contains information about the person’s qualifications, job experience and language proficiency." It is based on the idea of the European Qualifications Passport for Refugees, which accomplishes a similar objective and was launched in 2017 as a pilot project. According to the article, the UNESCO program is being piloted in Zambia, with projects planned for Colombia and Iraq. Via Yuma Inzolia, who suggests expanding the credential to include skills and continuous learning.
Sadly there has been no activity on the blog since last June, but I still think it's worth directing attention to this project bringing together resources on universal design for learning (UDL), and in particular this grid on providing multiple means of engagement, representation, and action & expression. Via Robert Gibson. See also: What Universal Design for Learning Looks Like: A Teacher's Perspective, by Ann Neary, via Gustavo Garcia Lutz.
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Copyright 2019 Stephen Downes Contact: email@example.comThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.