Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community

Gardner Campbell reflects on his use of phpBB for class discussions instead of the more-commonly used discussion fora in learning management systems. Now phpBB is 20-year old software, which makes me think again that during this pandemic we're re-learning all the lessons from two decades ago. But there's benefit in hindsight as well; Campbell writes that his use is intended to avoid the LMS's "transactional design for everything." He writes that the "'transactional' rules out the real vulnerability and communal efforts and conspicuous commitment required for authentic learning communities." Perhaps, but I wonder how non-transactional his students' use of phpBB is when (a) they're students, and (b) he requires that student posts be “interesting, substantive, and relevant.”


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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada

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Last Updated: Sept 27, 2020 1:55 p.m.