Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community
This paper asks, "How can the notion of communities of practice support an inquiry stance by teachers?" By an "inquiry stance," he means "examination and reflection on their teaching practices with an eye towards improving or changing them." Communities of practice provide connections to other practitioners, argues the author, and they "provide the cognitive tools - ideas, feedback, models, and concepts - that educators can adopt." Maybe so, but it should be clear there's a lot more to it than this. Does it make sense, for example, to create a community of practice within a school, as opposed to across organizational boundaries but among people with whom you have more affinity? And why do people persist in treating communities of practice as though they were some sort of mini organization, with 'success factors' and other formal properties?

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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada
stephen@downes.ca

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Copyright 2021
Last Updated: Mar 30, 2021 01:06 a.m.