Does sociability quality of web-based collaborative learning information system influence students’ satisfaction and system usage?
Maimoona Salam, Muhammad Shoaib Farooq, International Journal of Educational Technology in Higher Education, 2020/05/11
This article employs the concept of 'sociability quality' to assess the 'service quality' of information systems. "In a collaborative learning environment, it's social functionalities or sociability quality, allows students to interact, not only to absorb information in a deliberate manner, but it also enables them to attentively ponder, participate, discuss and share their ideas with others" (sic; the paper could really have used an editor for language and grammar). The concept of 'service quality' is taken from DeLone & McLean and explains "the cognitive and behavioral facets, of the system's post-adoption (i.e. after acceptance of system) stage, system use and system success." The article reports on a (small) empirical study showing "sociability quality has a direct positive impact on the system use and overall user satisfaction, along with a strong indirect impact on the net benefits of the (learning information system)." I like the concept of the paper (which is why it's here) but, as suggested above, it really could have been edited for length, content, and quality.
This article serves as a reminder that there are varying opinions as to what is appropriate for children. It's also a good reminder that Tolstoy's children's stories are not for the faint of heart. "A boy catches a bird in a cage. His mother says he shouldn’t do that. He leaves the door of the cage open. The bird flies out, straight into a glass window, knocking itself out. It suffers for a few days, then dies. The end." Reviewer John Byron Kuhner writes, "Do not give this book to children. Anything is better than this. Jude the Obscure. Maybe some Elie Wiesel. Spengler." The book is called The Lion and the Puppy And Other Stories for Children and though it's surely out of copyright (Tolstoy died in 1910) I was not able to find an open access copy online.
This might not seem to have anything to do with education, but I invite you to think about what it would mean for learning and development if we had, on the one hand, a universal basic income, and on the other hand, free and open access to courses and other learning resources. In this way, education would cease to be reserved for those who are privileged, but instead would become available to everyone who wanted to learn. Would there still be challenges, issues with equity, and hurdles to overcome? Absolutely. But would it be an enormous advance over the current system? Without a doubt.
"Please don't complain about 'fake' news or a lack of objectivity in the media unless you support real journalism," writes Doug Johnson. "Subscribe to a newspaper. Support public radio. By a magazine. Make newspaper readers out of your kids." I understand his reasoning, but it's not that simple. Case in point: I took out a subscription in The Logic recently as an experiment (I've supported various news initiatives over the years). It's expensive, but hires real journalists. But the problem is, the news is skewed to represent the interests of the people paying the subscriptions, which is manifestly not the people without (say) their own companies, an investment in the stock market, etc. So the concern still exists: the news still reports the opinions of the people who pay for it, whether it's advertisers, businesses, people trying to destabilize society, whatever.
The problem with meritocracy is that "there’s huge correlation between the kind of material support that people have, and their ability to perform on the kind of exams that allow people to get into colleges." So 'merit' turns out to be a proxy for 'wealth'. And as Ross Douthat says, "That is what Harvard is in the business of doing, the sort of condensation of networking and people having access to each other’s ideas and family connections and all the rest. That’s what Harvard institutionally is committed to."
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