Learning in Communities

Stephen Downes, Mar 01, 2004
Commentary by Stephen Downes

The latest in my series of articles for the Australian Flexible Learning Community, in this item I look at the question of why we want online learning communities and what makes these communities work. I comments, "Probably the greatest misapplication of online community lies in the idea that it is an adjunct to, or following from, the creation and design of an online course.... the relation ought to be the other way around: that the course content (much less its organization and structure) ought to be subservient to the discussion, that the community is the primary unit of learning, and that the instruction and the learning resources are secondary, arising out of, and only because of, the community."
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