Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community

Sage at the Side

Dec 06, 2011

One of the ideas to come out of the #Change11 course is that of the "sage by the side". It is of course a twist on that old constructivist standby, "A guide by the side, not a sage on the stage." As I tell people, connectivism isn't constructivism, there's room for sages to (at the very least) model and demonstrate, but they are 'sages by the side'. This is a post from back in November by this werk's #Change11 gues Clark Quinn. And the concept makes a return in today's contribution to the course. Writes Quinn, "I am very much a fan of guided discovery learning (not the unguided discovery learning that was used as a straw-man opponent to instructivist in the Kirschner, Sweller, Clark article), but I do believe guidance is necessary until learners demonstrate self-learning capability. And I definitely think we can and should be developing that capability, but I’m not sanguine that we’re very good at it yet." (OK, the quote isn't an exact match for the concept, but I wanted to get the 'straw man' reference in).


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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada

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