A (more or less) complete list of my presentations. Currently 450 or so presentations are listed. Most have embedded slides, most talks have embedded audio recordings, and some have video. Audio, video and slide downloads are included. Viewers may also be interested in the Interviews I have offered over the years.

Toward a Distributed OER Network
Jun 11, 2019. ICOE “Smart Education” Webinar , Beijing, via Adobe Connect (Seminar). This short presentation looks at some of the problems inherent in traditional OER repositories and describes the first steps in the creation of a distributed OER network, called Content Addressable Resources for Education (CARE).

The Third Wave: the Next Generation of Distributed Learning Technology
May 22, 2019. Canadan Network for Innovation in Education, Vancouver, British Columbia (Keynote). Stephen Downes argues that we are entering a new generation of distributed web technologies that will change how we view the development and delivery of online learning. In a talk that blends some of the underlying themes from artificial intelligence, blockchain and cloud technologies Downes builds on his previous work developing network-based MOOCs to describe new types of content-addressable learning resources, new activity-driven models of assessment, consensus-based communities, and a model of learning based on identity, voice and opportunity. Livestreaming video:

Future Learning in an Advanced Decentralized Learning Ecosystem
May 10, 2019. Individual Training and Education (IT&E) Symposium, Canadian Forces Base Borden (Keynote). The U.S. Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative (ADL) has historically emphasized interoperability in decentralized learning ecosystems, supporting such things as the Personal Assistant for Learning (PAL) and Open Social Learning Models (OSLM). Similar challenges are being faced in the wider internet community. Developers have responded with new approaches supporting decentralized networks, such as open social applications (for example, micropub), distributed ledger technology (for example, blockchain), and cloud container networks. These will support new learning application such as virtual reality, artificial intelligence, and personal assistants. This presentation will provide an overview of this emerging infrastructure, describe key points of contact with training and development services, and outline the impact on future learning programs and systems.

A Quick Look at the Future of OER
Mar 05, 2019. Open Education Week: 24-Hour Global CC Network Web-a-thon, Online, via Uberconference (Seminar). This talk looks at the impact of new technologies – specifically, open data, cloud technologies, AI and distributed ledgers (blockchain) – on the future shape of OER – what they will look like, how they will be used, and what skills and knowledge will be needed to develop and use them.

Recent Work in Connectivism
Mar 04, 2019. LAK19, Phoenix, Arizona, via Zoom (Panel). In this presentation I look at how connectivism is being applied and understood in current literature. I look at connectivism as pedagogy, connectivism as a learning theory, some successes of connectivist methods, and look at connectivism from a wider perspective. Please see this Google Doc for full notes and references.

Electron Express
Feb 28, 2019. In-House, Ottawa (Workshop). This is an overview of how applications are being created for the web and the desktop using Node.js packages including Express and Electron. It's intended for a non-technical audience and describes how the software works and what it can do. This not a 'how-to' guide, it's a survey of the landscape.

Trends in e-Learning and Virtual Education
Jan 28, 2019. 7 Internacional e-Learning Seminar, Online, via Zoom (Lecture). I outline a number of major recent technological trends in e-learning and virtual education, including the use of artificial intelligence and learning analytics, blockchain technology for resources and recognition, and virtual and augmented reality for immersive experiences. I draw examples from corporate, university, and elementary education development projects and implementations. These in turn inform the discussion of wider trends in pedagogy and curriculum, including new critical literacies, community network development and management, and personal learning management and support.

Vision 2030: Redesigning Education for the Future
Nov 06, 2018. Asbar World Forum 2018, Riyadh, Saudia Arabia (Keynote). In this presentation I outline three ways education needs to adapt to the future, by becoming more relevant, engaging and personal, and then describe the technologies and approaches we will need to develop and use in order to support this. (Note that long portions of the video are blocked by a camera operator sitting down in front of my camera and doing nothing in particular).

E-Learning 3.0
Oct 18, 2018. Online Learning 2018, Toronto, Ontario (Lecture). This presentation explores the impact of the next wave of learning technologies emerging as a consequence of the significant and substantial changes coming to the World Wide Web.

Personal Learning vs Personalized Learning: What Needs to Happen
Oct 17, 2018. Online Learning 2018, Toronto, Ontario (Lecture). This special briefing explores personal learning as the future of learning, explores why it's important, the tools which enable personal learning and the significant potential of personal learning as a key to life-long learning and the skills agenda.

Topics in Distributed Ledger Technology
Aug 30, 2018. In-house Workshop, Ottawa, Ontario (Workshop). This is an in-house presentation presentation looks at key underlying concepts of blockchain and related technologies - distributed, ledgers, hash functions, consensus. It discusses applications, some of the major coin projects, platforms and services, and some issues with this approach. First presented in-house August 30, 2018. Audio is from a second presentation October 4, 2018.

Blockchain in the Life Sciences
Jun 03, 2018. Life Sciences Day 2.0, Ottawa, Ontario (Panel). Slides are of my presentation to the panel giving an accessible overview of blockchain technologies and explaining their relevance to life sciences. The audio is from the panel as a whole (the first minute is missing); it looks at the future of life sciences technology and features speakers from OBIO, CHEO and IBM as well as myself. My audio begins at the 41:00 minute mark.

How Open Education Can Change the World (Reprise)
Apr 26, 2018. Educacion y Technologia en y Para La Diversidad, Medellin, Colombia (Keynote). I define and explore the application of open education and open educational resources (OER) to peace, reconciliation and development in Colombia. I describe how new technologies have made possible new ways of learning, and how we can work together as a community to teach ourselves, thus allowing each person the voice and opportunity to play a meaningful role in society. This is a more polished version of the talk given in Rionegro. HL-Z2q-sgnw

How Open Education Can Change the World
Apr 24, 2018. Educación para la Paz, Rionegro, Colombia (Keynote). In this presentation I explore the application of open education and open educational resources (OER) to peace, reconciliation and development in Colombia. I describe how new technologies have made possible new ways of learning, and how we can work together as a community to teach ourselves, thus allowing each person the voice and opportunity to play a meaningful role in society.

Review of Ethically Aligned Design
Mar 13, 2018. HCT Reading Club, Ottawa, via Jabber (Seminar,Seminar,Seminar,). In this presentation I review Ethically Aligned Design by The IEEE Global Initiative on Ethics of Autonomous and Intelligent Systems, focusing on the section on classical ethics in autonomous and intelligent systems (A/IS).

Progress to Date on gRSShopper
Mar 09, 2018. OEWeek 24-Hour Web-a-thon, Online, viz Zoom (Seminar,Seminar,Seminar,). Filling in a gap in the 24 hour OER marathon I presented viewers with a quick update of where development on the gRSShopper PLE has progressed to date. No slides, just a live unplanned demo (complete with some debugging popups).

Why Personal Learning
Feb 23, 2018. Moodle Moot 2018, Toronto, Ontario (Keynote,Keynote,Keynote,). In this presentation I examine the difference between personal and personalized learning, show how this informs the design of the personal learning environment, and draw from that the reasons for preferring personal learning. Photo by Tim Bahula

Innovation in Educational Technology
Jan 24, 2018. EIDOS64, Bayonne, France (Keynote). What are the factors that motivate innovation in educational technology, and what is the outcome that results from those factors. In this talk Stephen Downes addresses the set of commonly understood ‘drivers’, ranging from factors ranging from demographic change to economic restraint to technology development. In addition, he also examines the ‘attractors’ for innovation, defining these as the factors that define what we want to accomplish through education, factors that range from personal self-improvement to workplace training to social and cultural development. From the perspective of these factors we can comprehend not only the recent history of educational technology, but also gain perspectives on the future as well. We can also comment on what we want, need and value in an education system, and thus frame the decisions that we will need to take in the short term in order to prepare for the long term.

Trends in the Future of Learning
Dec 15, 2017. Learning Futures Workshop, Gatineau, Quebec (Lecture). Work in the future will require higher levels of analysis, access to experts, and greater autonomy. How can the College@ESDC equipped itself for what’s coming? What form(s) is learning, and especially operational training, likely to take in 10-15 years?

A Roadmap of the Future of Teaching and Learning
Dec 07, 2017. Online Educa Berlin, Berlin, Germany (Lecture). This Spotlight Stage session is for policy makers and pundits, technology designers and developers, and those who by virtue of office or inclination have the voice to speak to the future, to inform the world of what we can do and what we want to do. Join Stephen Downes as he invites you to explore the quantum leaps we can expect in teaching in our digital age.

gRSShopper in a Box
Dec 06, 2017. Online Educa Berlin, Berlin, Germany (Workshop). Overview of server virtualization, setup of Vagrant box for gRSShopper, an overview of the gRSShopper application, including its use in a Firefox panel.

Applications, Algorithms and Data: Open Educational Resources and the Next Generation of Virtual Learning
Nov 30, 2017. Education Ouverte: Ressources Educatives Libres et Ingenierie de Formation, Hammamet, Tunisia (Keynote). The next generation of OERs will take a step beyond traditional media and classroom support and begin to take advantage of the unique properties of virtual learning. Using examples such as virtual containers and actionable data books, I sketch the future for the next generation of OERs as a distributed and interactive network of applications, algorithms and data. Video starts at 1:18:00.

Online Learning and MOOCs: Visions and Pathways
Nov 07, 2017. China International Distance Education Conference, Beijing, China (Keynote). This talk delivered in Beijing, China, traces the history of online learning from learning objects and LMSs through to open educational resources and MOOCs, then describes some trends for the future. See also here and here for conference websites. English with Chinese translation (audio, video) provided by Li Chen.

A Personal Learning Framework
Oct 18, 2017. ICDE2017 World Conference on Online Learning, Toronto, Canada (Lecture). This presentation looks at the quantum mechanics of learning theory, drilling down from the idea of a subject or a piece of knowledge to the elements constituting a personal learning framework. Unfortunately the last 7 minutes of the video is clipped. The audio recording contains the full length of the talk.

Change, Challenge and Opportunity
Oct 18, 2017. ICDE2017 World Conference on Online Learning, Toronto, Ontario (Lecture). In this presentation I discuss six major trends impacting online learning: Machine learning and artificial intelligence; Handheld and Mobile Computing Badges and Blockchain; Internet of Things; Games, Sims and Virtual Reality; Translation and Collaborative Technology. Video includes audience and backchannel.

The Semantic Condition
Oct 12, 2017. YouTube Video Presentation, Ottawa, Ontario (Lecture). Despite what the first slide says, this was created and uploaded October 24, 2017. In this video I describe my 'Semantic Condition' diagram that I created ten years ago and I go through the process of creating a nice neat cleaned up version of the diagram. This diagram basically slides the four essential principles for the creation of meaning, truth and value in networks, specifically, autonomy, diversity, openness and interactivity. There's a lot left unsaid; I'm just describing the concept here, not defending it, and I am offering only surface-level views of the four principles, not a deep examination. But I hope people will find it useful, as it is a key part of my own framework for knowledge, learning and discovery. The diagram may be downloaded here.

Topics in Connectivism
Aug 28, 2017. Konferencja Pokazać – Przekazać, Warsaw, Poland (Seminar). This longish discussion covers four major topic areas: open networks, personal learning, the personal learning environment, and critical literacies. It was delivered in the dark in a planetarium. During the actual talk we skipped over the third topic.

The Living Library Session
Aug 25, 2017. Konferencja Pokazać – Przekazać, Warsaw, Poland (Workshop). Very informal session in the 'Living Library' format (my first such) in which people dropped in and out to ask one or a few questions of me. Topics ranged all over the map. The photo (at right) was taken at the conference.

Becoming Connected
Aug 25, 2017. Konferencja Pokazać – Przekazać, Warsaw, Poland (Keynote). Objective: To present the core ideas of connectivism in both a learning and scientific context, in a sense unifying the ideas of discovery, interaction and education.

Leading Into Our Futures
Jul 08, 2017. CICan Leadership Institute for Presidents and Directors General, Mont Tremblant, Quebec (Workshop). In this presentation we engaged in a design exercise considering how we would develop the post-secondary education system from scratch if we were starting today. This discussion was set in a context of participant-selected stakeholders and benefits along with a background discussion of emerging technologies and trends. Presentation Slides in Google Docs.

A Model of Personal Learning (Take Two)
Jun 20, 2017. Learning Tech Day, Ghent, Belgium (Keynote). In his talk, I look at the daily routine of a personal learner, filled with examples and demonstrations. Tagline during the whole talk will be Connectivism, the importance of a Personal Learning Network and the ARRFF model of learning activities (Aggregate Remodel Repurpose Feed Forward) . To top this off, he’ll also offer insights on some newer technologies and his personal thoughts on the future of learning. Coverage.

A Model of Personal Learning
May 16, 2017. 1er Simposium Internacional de Investigacion, Desarrolle e Innovacion en la Sociedad Digital, Mexico City, Mexico (Keynote). I look at the day-to-day routine of a personal learner with examples from my own practice and a live demonstration of learning activities. Through the presentation I explain the philosophy of Connectivism, a learning approach based on developing and growing personal learning networks, and will describe the ARRFF (Aggregate Remodel Repurpose Feed Forward) model of learning activities. Finally, he offer insights regarding some key technologies on the horizon, such as server virtualization and augmented reality, and offer thoughts on the future of online learning.

Open Learning, Open Networks
Mar 09, 2017. SUNY Open COTE 2017, Syracuse, New York (Keynote). Open online learning entered the mainstream with the growth and popularity of MOOCs, but while interest in open online courses has never been greater MOOCs represent only the first step in a broader open learning infrastructure. In this keynote Stephen Downes will describe several key innovations shaping the future of open learning: distributed social networks, cloud infrastructures and virtualization, immersive reality, and personal learning environments. The talk will outline the challenges this evolving model will pose to learning providers and educational institutions and recommend policies and processes to meet them. Link to hosted video.

The Value and Price of Open Online Courses
Dec 02, 2016. OEB2016, Berlin, Germany (Panel). If open online learning can be equivalent or even superior to face-to-face education, what does this mean for the value and the price of MOOCs for institutions, for learning communities, for learners and for the creation of new knowledge. Oanel notes are avauilable as an MS Word document here.

Developing a Personal Learning Infrastructure
Nov 30, 2016. OEB 2016, Berlin, Germany (Workshop). In this workshop we examine the various parts of a personal learning environment and moot the development of a PLE architecture.

Personal learning environments and technologies
Nov 30, 2016. Impuls, Berlin, Germany (Lecture). This presentation looks at the current trends in learning technology - competencies, personalization, and innovation. It casts them in a sceptical light, explaining and then challenging the presuppositions underlying them. It proposes an alternative 'personal learning', describes technologies supporting it, and outlines a framework for technology and pedagogy development in this environment.

Trends in education: Facts, Fads and Fiction
Nov 26, 2016. Digital trends challenging learning and training in the workplace, Brussels, Belgium (Keynote). This talk looks at a number of current trends in online learning and sorts then according to their likelihood of success. In general, those that depend on significant human intervention - such as, for example, creating competency definitions - are expected to be failures. The distinction between learning as a path and learning as an environment is discussed. In the video, Wilfred Rubins speaks first; my talk begins at 1:01:00   After the talk, we held an afternoon workshop in the BeODL offices.

Learning with Open Resources
Nov 09, 2016. Invited Presentation, Beirut, Lebanon (Lecture). Sadly, the audio in this discussion did not succeed (I discovered later I had left the recorder running the day before and filled the hard drize with meaningless noise). The actual presentation ended at slide 25 but I include the rest for completeness (and to show how ambitious I was). I begin with examples of openness in various projects we've worked on, then segue into a discussion of types of openness.

Personal Learning and Assessment
Nov 07, 2016. Regional Forum on ICTs in Higher Education of the Arab States, Beirut, Lebanon (Keynote). Panel discussion covering various aspects of personal learning and issues related to assessment. Talks are in English, French and Arabic. I argue against the 'gap' analysis of learning, contrast 'personalization' with an alternative based on meeting one's own objectives and goals, and describe a model of learning achievement based on sharing, contributing and co-creating.

Theories of learning – epistemology of connectivism
Nov 07, 2016. Regional Forum on ICTs in Higher Education of the Arab States, Beirut, Lebanon (Keynote). Presentation of major branches of epistemology, placing connectivism into this content, and then describing learning theories in this framework. This becomes a basis for a discussion of the process of learning underlying learning technologies, from which, ultimately, a learning technology value chain is presented.

Nov 06, 2016. Regional Forum on ICTs in Higher Education of the Arab States, Beirut, Lebanon (Panel). Short presentation at a panel discussing aspects of openness in higher education. I am the first speaker in the panel; the other participants speak, and then there is a fairly good discussion following. I offered the argument that we should think of learning resources as the language we use to communicate and educate, and like words in a language, we need to be able to freely use them.

Learning Communities
Oct 13, 2016. Extended Virtual Symposium , Online, Via Adobe Connect and YouTube Live (Keynote). Presented atMOOCs4All. In this discussion I discuss the thinking behind our MOOCs, personal learning environments and connectivism and consider the question of how we know whether the method is working, how we know whether it is effective. Presented online via Adobe Connect and simulcast (using xSplit) to YouTube Live. Above is the Adobe Connect recording. Also you can view the xSplit recording to YouTube Live from the presenter screen (doesn't show screen shares, because that's how Connect rolls).

A Timeline
Sept 27, 2016. Internal Presentation, Ottawa (Keynote). This is a very brisk autobiography from my early childhood through to today.

The MOOC Identity: Designing Learning Environments
Sept 09, 2016. International MOOC Colloquium, Anacapri, Italy (Keynote). In this presentation I place the development of the MOOC in the context of innovative and transformational change. I then describe what will need to take place in  MOOCs to support tranformational change - connectivist design, personal learning, and a distributed ecosystem.

The Role of Incremental and Transformative Change in Future Prediction
Aug 03, 2016. Campus Technology 2016, Boston, Massachusetts (Keynote). This presentation addresses change, innovation and transformation from the perspective of educational technology. It examines causes and drivers of change and discusses how campus technologists can best plan for, and react to, changing technology and educational needs. This address was covered by several press outlets, including Campus Technology magazine, eCampus News, and EdSurge. 

Developing a Personal Learning Infrastructure
Jul 29, 2016. TCU International e-Learning Conference 2016, Bangkok, Thailand (Workshop).

Disruptive Innovations in Learning
Jul 27, 2016. TCU International e-Learning Conference 2016 , Bangkok, Thailand (Keynote). In this presentation I outline the characteristics of innovation and consider them in the light of educational technology. I survey some major innovations and question them from the perspective of idea, benefit and execution. Then I look at the changing nature of benefits in education and take learning beyond innovation and into transformation.

Connectivism, MOOCs and Innovation
Jul 25, 2016. MOOC and Innovation Conference, Chiang Mai, Thailand (Keynote). In this presentation I outline the major elements of connectivism as a learning theory, show how this informed the development and design of our massive open online courses (MOOCs), and then discuss the role played by open educational resources in a learning community. Video of the talk is available here.

The importance of faculty in the higher education experience
Jul 04, 2016. Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey, Mexico City, Mexico (Keynote). The shape of learning is changing with online learning and connective technology creating a new role for students as shapers and creators of knowledge in their own right. Now with the lecture being replaced with online videos and class discussion moving to locations like Facebook and Twitter, what role does the faculty play? How do they remain relevant in a world shaped by publishers and learning management systems? In this talk I focus on this question and offer insights about the future of online learning. View full text of speaking notes.

Learning, Doing, and the Golden Ratio
Jun 16, 2016. Workshop, Kapuskasing, Ontario (Workshop). Workshop I did for staff and others. I mixed two major threads of my recent work: first, the six critical literacies, and second, six 'new trends' in online learning. The workshop gave each participant roles with respect to these threads, mixed them together in different ways, then finally produced a set of six statements that represented the wisdom of the workshop - the emergent learning, if you will. I thought the results were great, and I may well try this workshop again. Three hours of audio, but maybe worth it.

New Trends in Online Learning
Jun 08, 2016. Atlantic Universities and Colleges Technology Conference, Sackville, New Brunswick, via WebX (Keynote). This presentation outlines six major trends in online learning technology: machine learning and artificial intelligence; handheld and mobile computing; badges and blockchain; internet of things; games, sims and virtual reality; and translation and collaborative technology. It then assesses the impact of these new technologies on education, describing a personal, self-managed and activity-based system of learning and development.

The Final Frontier: Space
Jun 03, 2016. SALTISE, Montreal, Quebec (Keynote). I compare two metaphors for learning: first, time, as the dominant metaphor, which is a linear and ordered progression toward a goal; and second, space, which is a non-linear exploration of a domain. I also examine the sort of tools. technologies and learning supports we should be thinking about when think of learning from a space-based perspective.

Extending Moodle
May 19, 2016. Moodle CONNECT - CONNECTER Moodle, Gatineau, Quebec (Keynote). Discussion of some major trends of recent years, how these have impacted Moodle (including a discussion of some Moodle extensions addressing them) and some observations about future trends that will impact how Moodle developers will want to adapt the technology in the future.

MOOC Quality Malaysia
May 01, 2016. MOOC Experts Meeting, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (Keynote). This is a short presentation at an expert's meeting on my thoughts about MOOC quality. I focus on the elements of personal learning and present the four elements of MOOC quality, autonomy, openness, interactivity. The workshop was one of the elements in a longer-term study that resulted in the publication of  Quality in MOOCs; Surveying the Terrain, by Nina Hood and Allison Littlejohn in June 2016.

Strategies for Personal Learning
Apr 25, 2016. VI e-Learning International Conference 2016, Madrid, Spain, online via Zoom (Lecture). In this presentation I draw the distinction between personal and personalized learning and the outline the major strategies supporting personal learning: sharing, contributing and co-creation.

Ed Tech Moonshot
Apr 21, 2016. Invited Presentation, Arlington, Texas (Lecture). This tongue-in-cheek title was used for the whole day of discussions George Siemens and I and guests had at the LINK center at the University of Texas in Arlington (Part One, Part Two, Part Three). This presentation was delivered impromptu to an assembled audience at noon. It explored the core purpose of learning technology, as linked to lessons learned through the four major domains in my career: media, computing, philosophy, and education.

Personal and Personalized Learning
Apr 21, 2016. Spring VirtCon, Washington D.C. (Keynote). In this presentation I outline the major differences between personal and personalized learning. "In the case of personal learning, the role of the educational system is not to provide learning, it is to support learning. Meanwhile, the decisions about what to learn, how to learn, and where to learn are made outside the educational system, and principally, by the individual learners themselves."

Exploring the Future of Learning to Adapt to New Trends
Apr 06, 2016. Education Technology Strategies 2016, Toronto, Ontario (Panel). Panel discussion. No audio, video or anything.

From Individual to Community: The Learning Is in the Doing
Mar 19, 2016. World Congress on Continuing Professional Development, San Diego, California (Keynote). In this presentation I begin with the assertion that learning is personal, distinguish 'personal' from 'personalized' as being based in personal practice, describe practice in a learning network, and show how progress and evaluation through practice is based on performance in authentic communities.

Virtual Worlds on the Go
Mar 13, 2016. VWBPE16, Online, via AvaCon (Keynote). In this presentation I speculate about the future of virtual worlds in learning when they are mixed with mobile devices and performance support systems. Presented inside a virtual world using AvaCon.

Informal Discussion on the Future of Educational Media
Mar 05, 2016. Educational Technology Summit 2016, Istanbul, Turkey (Seminar).

The Future of Educational Media
Mar 05, 2016. Educational Technology Summit, Istanbul, Turkey (Keynote). In this talk I look at some of the common tropes of the 'future' of educational media - learning analytics, mobile, etc. - and offer criticisms and an alternative account.

The Agile Approach to Learning Design
Dec 03, 2015. Online Educa Berlin 2016, Berlin, Germany (Panel). Panel discussion on the use of agile development methodologies in learning design. My own contribution was to highlight the pitfalls of this approach., and I pointed out that learning design is very different from software design - indeed, are we doing agile "learning design", or design for "agile learning"? Read the transcript of my talk here.

Developing a Personal Learning Infrastructure with Stephen Downes
Dec 02, 2015. Online Educa Berlin 2016, Berlin, Germany (Workshop). This workshop steps through design elements of a personal learning environment and underlying technologies. Note that the audio and video files are some five hours long, and while I've tried to cut out the time spent working in groups, there's a fair amount of dead air. There's also a lot of great content!

Programme Systèmes d’aide à l’apprentissage et au rendement (SAAR)
Nov 20, 2015. Organisation internationale de la francophonie, Carthage, Tunisia (Keynote). Slides in English, audio en français. This is a brief presentation of the Learning and Performance Support program, especially with respect to MOOCs and OERs, underway at the National Research Council. I outline the concept from the perspective of the personal learning record, showing how the personal graph is created by aggregating resources and activities, and the set of tools associated with the personal graph is used to access learning opportunities such as MOOCs and open educational resources.

Imagining Canada's Future
Nov 17, 2015. SSHRC Fall Conference: Imagining Canada's Future, Ottawa, Ontario (Keynote). Talk I gave at SSHRC's Fall Forum called Imaging Canada's Future. No slides for this one; I worked off a set of notes. I introduced some overall thoughts about talking about the future, described some of the 'same old ways' we think about the future and meeting future needs, and then suggests that what we should really be learning from the 21st century is that knowledge is complex, fluid, changing, and not usefully described in terms of rules, facts, principles, and outcomes. To support this I quoted from a number of the presentations attendees had just seen, including one showing that we learn language by 'learning the rhythm', and another showing that spatial skills are the best predictor of mathematical ability.

Personal Learning in Virtual Environments
Nov 13, 2015. VI Jornadas pedagógicas en tecnología e innovación educativa, Guayaquil, Ecuador (Keynote). Presentation in English, with translation in Spanish. In this presentation I discuss the foundation of MOOCs in an approach based in experiential learning, as opposed to more traditional content-based learning. I outline the development of the technology to support the MOOC and from this describe the architecture of the Learning and Performance Support system, along with simulations and immersive technology being developed at the National Research Council.

Critical Literacies and the Challenge of Online Learning
Oct 30, 2015. TESL Canada 2015, Lake Louise, Alberta (Lecture). In recent years the massive open online course (MOOC) has become widely popular, but it has also demonstrated some of the key challenges facing online students. Challenges to MOOCs have included high dropout rates and the need for students to be self-sufficient online. In this talk the developer of the original MOOC, Stephen Downes, addresses this challenge by underling a set of competencies or skills recommended for both teachers and learners in virtual environments. These competencies, which he describes as ‘critical literacies’, support an approach to online learning based in an immersive online pedagogy in a personal learning environment supporting engagement with online courses, communities of practice, and workplace communities.

Inspire: Learning!
Oct 29, 2015. Talent and the Future of Work, Online, via on24 (Panel). Short (12 minute) presentation on the idea of learning as being based on immersive practice, how this informed the design of our original MOOCs, and how this approach is informing our current work on learning and performance support systems.

Beyond Instructional Design: Open Spaces and Learning Places
Oct 22, 2015. October ADEC Program Panel, Online, via GoToMeeting (Lecture). This presentation focuses on the differences between a program and an environment, instructional design approaches through multi-year games, and the pedagogy of spaces and places that lend themselves to connectivist learning environment designs.

Where are MOOCs Going? What is the Future of Distance Learning?
Sept 26, 2015. International MOOC Conference 2015, Anacapri, Italy (Keynote). In this presentation I outline where the new MOOCs missed the real innovations in our connectivist MOOCs - not just the idea of 'open', but also the distributed architechture. From this foundation I describe the new approach to personal learning based on an experiential and immersive approach to learning. Slides are similar to my recent talk in Glasgow but the content is quite different.

Personal Learning in the Workplace
Sept 07, 2015. AMEE 2015, Glasgow, Scotland (Keynote). In this presentation I draw the distinction between personalized learning and personal learning, arguing that the latter emphasizes environment and affordances, while the former emphasizes content and testing. I describe examples of experiential learning such as the NeuroTouch Simulator built by NRC and discuss how the same approach informs the creation of the MOOC. I conclude by explaining the development of the Learning and Performance Support system as a personal learning environment. There's a video here but I don't have the password.

The MOOC Ecosystem
Sept 06, 2015. Association of Medical Educators of Europe (AMEE) E-Learning Symposium, Glasgow, Scotland (Keynote). The MOOC ecosystem is presented as a series of magnitudes akin to Ray Eames's  1977 'Powers of Ten' video, beginning from the original MOOC of 2000 people, through to a MOOC world of 2 billion people, and back down to the synapse at 0.00002 people. The talk looks at the interactions between the levels and challeges the 'educationist' presumptions of reduction and representation (pace Quine).

Design Elements in a Personal Learning Environment
Aug 27, 2015. Invited Talk, Guadalajara, Mexico (Lecture). This is an update of an earlier presentation in which I outline the major elements of a personal learning environment and describe its origins in the concept of the MOOC. Some new slides describing the architecture and how to contribute to the expansion of LPSS. As well, this presentation comes the day after this workshop in Guadalajara and is informed by it. The video has the Spanish translation audio. My audio is in English (my talk starts after the intros at around the 14 or 15 minute mark, 15:17 in the video).

Designing Personal Learning Environments
Aug 26, 2015. Invited Talk, Guadalajara, Mexico (Workshop). This is the outline I used for the 'Designing Personal Learning Environments' workshop we held at the University of Guadalajara today. We fit the exercises into a four hour period which made it very fast-paced and intensive. I think it went pretty well. View the handout.

Open Education and & Personal Learning
Aug 20, 2015. Lunch and Learn Workshop, Tempe, Arizona (Lecture). This presentation uses the same slides as the presentation delivered in Banff in April, and the text of which may be found here. The context is updated a bit based on the last four months experience building the system being described. outline major aspects of the learning and performance support systems (LPSS) program as it relates to open education environments. In particular I focus on understanding OERs as words, aggregating and analyzing OERs, data representation, and learner production and sharing of OERs. I conclude with a number of brief case studies of how work in LPSS supports this perspective.

MOOCS and Social Learning Networks
Jul 21, 2015. MOOCs Y Aprendiazaje en Redes Sociales, Santiago de Compostela, Spain (Keynote). In this presentation I look at the intersection of MOOCs and social learning networks by looking at the various aspects of openness in MOOCs - open admissions, open content, open instruction, open assessment - and considering how they change when applied to networks and to social networks.

LPSS: Learning and Performance Support System
Apr 28, 2015. In-House Presentation, Ottawa, Ontario (Seminar). In-house presentation of the LPSS program about 18 months into its mandate, overviewing the design philosophy, the description of personal learning, the major elements of the program, and several of the client projects.

Open Education and Personal Learning
Apr 23, 2015. Open Education Global, Banff, Alberta (Keynote). In this presentation I outline major aspects of the learning and performance support systems (LPSS) program as it relates to open education environments. In particular I focus on understanding OERs as words, aggregating and analyzing OERs, data representation, and learner production and sharing of OERs. I conclude with a number of brief case studies of how work in LPSS supports this perspective.  Full paper available here:

What is Innovation in Education?
Mar 30, 2015. ‘Education day 2015: festival of innovation in education, Ghent, Belgium (Keynote). In this presentation I look at what innovation and progress in education really look like, focusing on the benefits they produce rather than elements of novelty and fads. Live Stream (Silverlight, so I can't show it on this page). Note that while the video starts without audio, the sound starts after a few minutes.

A Blogger's Springtime
Mar 21, 2015. Spring Blog Festival, Online, via WizIQ (Lecture). In this presentation I talk about the practice of blogging in a new and complex media environment. Contrary to what may be popular belief, blogging is not dead, nor even slowing down, though attention has shifted away from the form to new types of social media. But it is part of a much larger content ecosystem which as a whole is experiencing a golden age, and blogging is a major part of that. I show people how I blog, how I use blogs, and how I am encouraging student use of blogs in MOOCs.

Learning and Connectivism in MOOCs
Mar 16, 2015. 1º Simpósio brasileiro sobre novas tecnologias educacionais, Online, to Brazil (Keynote). In this presentation I argue that learning a domain is like learning a language (as opposed to remembering facts and content) and presupposes the learning of various literacies; the talk then outlines the major literacies MOOCs are designed to support. See also this.

Design Elements in a Personal Learning Environment
Mar 04, 2015. 4th International Conference e-Learning and Distance Education, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (Keynote). In this talk I address the core design elements in the development of a personal learning architecture being developed in the National Research Council's Learning and Performance Support Systems program. This program was developed and approved to address the issue of skills shortages in technical and professional industries in Canada. Please also see the supporting paper submitted for this talk. Also there are alternative PDF slides for this presentation.

Disruptive Innovation in Universities
Mar 04, 2015. 4th International Conference e-Learning and Distance Education, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (Panel). Panel discussion on the nature of disruptive innovations, MOOCs and disruptive innovation, and how and whether universities should adapt.

New Learning, New Society
Feb 23, 2015. Chang School Talks 2015, Toronto, Ontario (Keynote). Talk given to the Chang School at Ryerson University outline the weakness of traditional models of online learning and arguing instead for a student-centered and self-organized system.

MOOC Workshop
Feb 05, 2015. Education Technology Strategies 2015, Toronto, Ontario (Seminar). This is a three hour workshop on creating MOOCs. The audio seems to have failed on the video recording, making it possibly the worst video ever. But I did record backup audio, and while the quality isn't as good, it at least exists. In the workshop I went through major aspects of creating a MOOC, including technical support, design, content and pedagogy, and success measures.

Developing Personal Learning
Dec 20, 2014. 6th IEEE International Conference on Technology for Education, Kerala, India, online via A-View (Keynote). In this online presentation I discuss the evolution of personal learning technology and then itemize in more detail the elements of the NRC Learning and Performance Support Systems program, including the personal learning record, personal cloud, resource repository network, competency detection and recognition, and personal learning assistant.

Reclaiming Personal Learning
Dec 05, 2014. Online Educa Berlin, Berlin, Germany (Keynote). Part of a wider session called 'Education's Reality Check', this presentation highlights the need for, and structure of, personal learning, introducing participants to the Learning and Performance Support Systems project at

How to Build a MOOC
Nov 04, 2014. Unbordering Education, Yerevan, Armenia (Workshop). With a "small but mighty group" I demonstrated the various technologies we use to create a MOOC, including audio recording, Hangouts, and various other content creation and aggregation tools.

Creating a Learning Network
Oct 07, 2014. 20º CIAED - Congresso Internacional ABED de Educação a Distância, Curitiba, Brazil (Keynote). In this presentation I describe in detail how I created Ed Radio, OLDaily, the first MOOCs, and how I am taking the same distributed and networked approach to develop a personal learning network known as LPSS.

Personal Learning in a Connected World: Learning and Performance Support Systems
Sept 18, 2014. Future of E-Learning Environments, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (Keynote). This presentation outlines the NRC's Learning and Performance Support Systems program as an instance of a personal learning environment. It situates this program in a context where education depends on the development and refinement of critical literacies, which are in turn fostered by the interactive and communicative capacities of the PLE.

Learning and Connectivism in MOOCs
Sept 11, 2014. Desconectado IV Encuentro Internacional de Investigadores en EducaciÓn Virtual, Pereira, Colombia (Keynote). In this presentation I examine the phenomenon of MOOCs as I see them, explaining how they result from and support an understanding of the world based in pattern recognition. The presentation is structured along the lines of the six major elements of the underlying literacies of network interaction.

The Challenges (and Future) of Networked Learning
Sept 05, 2014. Invited presentation, Medellin, Colombia, Online via Vidyo (Seminar). A conversation about challenges (and future?) of networked learning. A broad understanding of the meaning and potential of networked learning can help educational institutions to rethink their role beyond the provision of LMS and centralized information systems. What skills are needed? What happens if we don't develop them?  What kind of technology supports the development of said skills? What’s the relation between this and issues of information property and citizenship in a digital context (POSSE models, Indie web movement)?

Free Learning from a Development Perspective
Jul 18, 2014. Invited talk, Gatineau, Quebec (Seminar). The slides in this presentation address: first, the relation between connectivism and free learning; second, the development of our understanding of networks and network technology; and third, the policy framework needed to enourage and promote free learning for development. The audio doesn't finish the slides but is an engaging discussion between myself and DFATDC staff.

Beyond Assessment - Recognizing Achievement in a Networked World
Jul 11, 2014. 12th ePortfolio, Open Badges and Identity Conference , Greenwich, UK (Keynote). ePortfolios and Open Badges are only the first wave in what will emerge as a wider network-based form of assessment that makes tests and reviews unnecessary. In this talk I discuss work being done in network-based automated competency development and recognition, the challenges it presents to traditional institutions, and the opportunities created for genuinely autonomous open learning.

Beyond Institutions - Personal Learning in a Networked World
Jul 09, 2014. Network EDFE Seminar Series, London, England (Seminar). In this presentation I look at the needs and demands of people seeking learning with the models and designs offered by traditional institutions, and in the spirit of reclaiming learning describe a new network-based sysyetm of education with the learner managing his or her education.

Beyond Free - Open Learning in a Networked World
Jul 08, 2014. 12th Annual Academic Practise & Technology Conference, Greenwich, UK (Keynote). The evolution of open content and open learning are explored in this presentation that seeks to recapture the essence of what it is that a MOOC is designed to do.

Digital Research Methodologies Redux
May 26, 2014. Ringvorlesungen (Lecture Series), Tübingen, Germany, online via Adobe Connect (Lecture). This is essentially the same set of slides as presented as 'Against Digital Research Method', though the presentation addresses research on MOOCs more specifically.

Cooperation and Collaboration
May 26, 2014. International Workshop on Mass Collaboration and Education, Tübingen, Germany (Seminar). In this presentation I revisit some of my work on 'groups and networks' to draw out the distinction between cooperation and collaboration for this mass collaboration workshop. I argue that mass collaboration may be impossible to achieve, and show how we employed a principle of mass cooperation to support massive open online courses (MOOCs). I also introduced new terminology, using the term 'collective' to describe what I have been calling 'groups', and 'connectives' to describe what I have been calling networks.

MOOCs Interview
Apr 14, 2014. , (Keynote). Interview in which I talk a lot about what I see in the future for MOOCs - serialized MOOCs, social community, etc. I also discuss personal learning environments and describe how they fit in to MOOCs. Also critical literacies.

The MOOCs Challenge
Apr 11, 2014. Education for Development, Philadelphia, PA (Panel). In my presentation I outline the (real) history of MOOCs, outline design parameters, and sketch future technologies. This is presented in the context of the 'democratization' of knowledge and learning to support international development and education. Read the conference report.

The Massive Course Meets the Personal Learner
Apr 03, 2014. EDUCON2014 – IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, Istanbul, Turkey (Keynote). In this talk I discuss the thinking behind the design of MOOCs and explain how these choices lead to the development of a personal learning environment fraework. Quite a bit of this talk is a reworking of 'The MOOC of One' and I'm trying to develop the ideas regarding pedagogy and theories of knowledge more explicitly. No slideshare yet; uploads are being interrupted every 300K or so (Filezilla just reconnects and continues, but Flickr Uploadr and Slidehare can't recover).

The Rise of MOOCs: Past Successes, Future Challenges
Mar 24, 2014. ICT advisory board meeting, Tunis, Tunisia (Lecture). (Photos: Demetrios Sampson) In this presentation I outline the major influences leading to the development of MOOCs, including learning objects and open educational resources. I then describe the basis for the creation of our original connectivist MOOCs, describe the learning theory behind them, and review attribues of a number of cMOOCs over the years. Finally I develop the concept of the personal learning environment as it is being implemented in our LPSS program.

The MOOC of One
Mar 10, 2014. INTED 2014, Valencia, Spain (Keynote). In this talk I examine the transition from the idea of the massive open online course - MOOC - to the idea of the personal learning environment. In the process of this discussion I question what it is to become 'one' - whether it be one course graduate, one citizen of the community, or one educated person. I argue that (say) 'being a doctor' isn't about having remembered the right content, not about having done the right things, not even about having the right feelings, nor about having the right mental representations - being one is about growing and developing a certain way.

Learning and Performance Support Systems
Feb 27, 2014. Invited Presentation, Toronto, Ontario (Seminar). Short presentation to a government and research audience outlining the major aspects of the Learning and Performance Support Systems program, which I led between 2014-2016.

A Personal Learning Framework
Feb 10, 2014. Connecting Online for Instruction and Learning 2014, Online, via WizIQ (Keynote). In this talk I review two major threads of our work at NRC over the last few years, MOOCs and Personal Learning Environments (PLEs). I describe the gRSShopper project and our Plearn PLE prototype development. Placing these in the context of a network theory of learning, I then outline the new Learning and Performance Support System (LPSS) program being undertaken at NRC. Alternative audio source here.

TIC y Educación
Dec 10, 2013. Tecnologías de la Información y Modelos Alternativos, Ajusco, México, via Skype (Seminar). In this presentation to  I outline major forms of open online learning, contrasting between formal and informal learning mechanisms, publishing and community-based production models, and forms of recognition and certification. English, with translation into Spanish. The audio quality is quite good, just skip past the first 2 minutes of Skype misbehaving.

Notes for UNCTAD's Advisory Group
Dec 10, 2013. Advisory Group on Developing skills, knowledge and capacities through innovation: E-Learning, M-Learning, cloud-Learning, Geneva, Switzerland, by Google Hangout (Seminar).   In this presentation for UNCTAD's Advisory Group on "Developing skills, knowledge and capacities through innovation: E-Learning, M-Learning, cloud-Learning" I outline major forms of open online learning, contrasting between formal and informal learning mechanisms, publishing and community-based production models, and forms of recognition and certification. The audio has a lot of echo (feedback from the other venue) - The transcript of the presntation is available here.

MOOC Research Institute Panel on Supporting Learners
Dec 05, 2013. MOOC Research Institute 2013, Arlington, Texas (Panel). In this discussion a panel of MOOC experts explored questions surrounding supporting learning online. Some widely varying perspectives, ranging from preparing students to work without a curriculum to student support software in an xMOOC. Panelists included myself, Sandi Boga from Athabasca, and Amy Collier from Stanford (with whom I had some nice snappy exchanges).

MOOC – Diversity and Community in Online Learning
Nov 27, 2013. 26e Entretiens Jacques Cartier, Lyon, France (Keynote). In this presentation I outline the major elelements of a connectivist MOOC, with particular intention to distinguish it from other models of MOOCs, and to make the point that assesssments of quality and effectiveness should be related to the goal of the MOOC model we developed. In addition, in this presentation I address the subjects of diversity and community, and explain why a MOOC should not be thought of as the same thing as a community. Additionally, there was a panel discussion, mostly in French, but with contributuons in English from myself - click here for the audio of the panel. See also this web page - I know there's video out there somewhere...

OERs and Open Online Courses
Oct 31, 2013. World Innovation Summit in Education, Doha, Qatar (Panel). Discussion of the role of OERs in MOOCs, with particular attention to the MOOC we are offering with UdeM in French on OERs (RELs in French). Originally planned to be delivered in English, then when the French-language speaker wasn't able to make it I tried to switch to French, but the effort failed miserably. But we proceeded with a live translator, so the audio begins in French, then switches to English with French translation. And I learn I still need to work a lot more on my conversational (technical) French.

Open Access and Open Learning
Oct 25, 2013. Open Access Week, Nova Scotia Community College, Online via BB Collaborate (Keynote). Over time, as resources have become more open, open learning has come to mean a form of learning where students can pick their own resources, identify their own learning goals, and set their own pace. More recently open learning has come to include concepts like open assessments and open credentials. In this talk, open learning advocate and pioneer I discuss the evolution of open learning, highlighting the vital role played by open access, and discuss current and future trends, including massive open online courses (MOOCs), learning analytics, and personal learning environments.

The Habits of Highly Connected Learners
Oct 25, 2013. Integrating Technology 4 Active Lifelong Learning, Online, via WizIQ (Seminar). Presentation given to the Integrating Technology 4 Active Lifelong Learning WizIQ course October 20, 2013. In Part A I outline the major principles of successful networks - autonomy, diversity, interactivity, openness. This sets the stage for understanding the importance of the seven habits of connected learners in part B.

Supporting a Distributed Online Course
Oct 14, 2013. Information Technology Based Higher Education and Training ITHET 2013, Antalya, Turkey (Keynote). In this presentation I summarize the major elements of a massive open online course, with an emphasis on openness, then I outline and describe the gRSShopper application used to develop and deploy the cMOOCs we have run. The presentation as a result emphasizes the differences between CMOOCs and xMOOCs. Finally, I talk a bit about technologies that will impact the development of MOOCs in the future, such as personal learning, authentication, and the personal cloud.

What Are Cultures of Learning?
Sept 12, 2013. ALT-C, Nottingham, UK (Keynote). In the previous three days delegates will have explored all aspects of cultures of learning, ranging from digital literacies to learning landscapes, classroom environments, VLEs and open courses. But beyond examining the leaves and the trees, what can we say of the forest? A culture of learning – and for that matter, a learning culture – is composed of more than classes and schools and subjects, it is composed of the attitudes and enquiries of a culture of experimentation, curiosity, and quirkiness. In this closing keynote presentation, Stephen Downes will outline the framework of a culture of learning, identifying from examples and experiences the fundamental values that must be modeled and demonstrated by society’s leaders, and will comment on implications to practice, research and policy.

Through the MOOC Darkly - Reflections on Life, Learning and the Future of Education
Jul 24, 2013. Saylor Speaker Series, Washington D.C., online, via Google Hangout (Seminar). Overview of thoughts related to the future of education, looking at the idea of learning as personal development, that aspect of the value proposition of universities, how that affects what we understand MOOCs to be and their role in learning generally, and the relation of learning to the economy and life generally.

Jenni Hayman Interview
Jul 18, 2013. , (Keynote). Fifty Days Fifty Stories podcast. Discussion of what I've been up to recently. Also some discussion of my efforts to learn French, describing how I developed and delivered a talk in French.

The Semantic Condition: Connectivism and Open Learning
Jul 11, 2013. Instituto Iberoamericano de TIC y Educación – IBERTIC, Online via Adobe Connect to Madrid and Buenos Aires (Keynote). In this talk I talk about the four major conditions, and four major design parameters, of massive open online courses - diversity, autonomy, openness and interactivity. In particular, I respond to a paper from Jenny Mackness, Roy Williams and Sui Fai John Mak called The Ideas and Reality of Participating in a MOOC. True, the paper is three years old, but I've always felt it deserved a considered response, and it provided an excellent platform for this talk. There is also a Q&A session, which I recorded, with audio available here.

Free Learning and the Wealth of Nations
Jun 28, 2013. Encuentro Internacional de Educación 2012 - 2013, Caracas, Venezuela (Keynote). In ths presentation I focus on the role of teachers in MOOCs, talking about what we do, and why we do it. The talk outlines the design and construction of MOOCs, and looks at the approach to learning the use of MOOCs supports. Video features a Spanish translation. There is also audio of a question and answer session that followed.

Debate Stephen Downes y Juan Domingo Farnós
Jun 27, 2013. Encuentro Internacional de Educación, Caracas, Venezuela (Panel). Debate entre los expertos Stephen Downes y Juan Domingo Farnós en el evento presencial que puso cierre al Tema 8: La Educación permanente, Aprendizaje formal, informal y no formal, los días 27 y 28 de junio en Caracas. Video only, Spanish translation.

What Constitutes Student Success?
Jun 21, 2013. Online Teaching Conference, Long Beach, California (Keynote). In this presentation I address the evaluation of student success in a MOOC environment, challenging the idea that success can be measured by such things as completion rates and test scores, and offering an alternative network-based mechanism of assessing success.

Connectivism, Online Learning, and the MOOC
Jun 17, 2013. Integrating Technology 4 Active Lifelong Learning, Online, via WizIQ (Seminar). Longish online WizIQ presentation that looks mostly at the concept of learning theories and MOOCs. The first part examines in some detail the concept of knowledge rmployed in MOOC pedagogy - this is a view of knowledge as recognition of emergent phenomena from networks of connected entities. It them looks at learning theories properly so-called, which are theories describing the mechanisms that form, strengthen or weaken connections. From this is derives the main elements of MOOC pedagogy and network design. The class was hosted by Nellie Deutsch.

MOOCs and OERs in Moncton
Jun 06, 2013. GTA Seminar, Moncton, New Brunswick (Seminar). Long long loooong presentation (almost four hours, though there's 15 minutes of set-up at the start and a 15-minute break in the middle) about the thinking behind MOOCs and the tools I've developed to build them. The first half looks first at the idea of  creating and sharing content as a matter of course. Then I look at how people learn, and talk about learning as a process of recognition. Then we go through the animation Connectivism link in today's newsletter. After the break, I take a step-by-step walk through gRSShopper, the software that runs this site and all of the MOOCs I've run, showing how the software and the theory both developed iteratively through use over a period of fifteen years or so.

Life-Long Learning
Jun 04, 2013. Encuentro Educación, Caracas, Venezuela, by Adobe Connect (Lecture). Slides and audio from my presentation to Encuentro Educación 2012 - 2013 in preparation for my upcoming visit to Caracas. Learning overall can be divided into the teaching function and the learning function; in this presentation I focused on the learning function, focusing on learning that is interactive, usable and relevant.

MOOC - La résurgence de la communauté dans l'apprentissage en ligne
May 30, 2013. REFAD, Edmunston, NB (Keynote). Downloads: full text in English, full text en français. Dans cette présentation, Stephen Downes aborde la question à savoir comment les MOOC (massive open online courses) influenceront l'avenir de la formation à distance. La présentation examine de façon détaillée la nature et l'objectif des MOOC comparativement à l'enseignement traditionnel à distance. Il soutient que les MOOC représentent la résurgence de l'apprentissage communautaire et décrira comment les institutions d'éducation à distance partageront les MOOC entre elles et renforceront les interactions en ligne grâce à des services et des ressources communautaires.

OERs, MOOCs and the Future
May 25, 2013. Vancouver Island University's Online Learning and Teaching Diploma - OLTD 505: OERs, Online, via Blackboard Collaborate (Seminar). Overview discussing open educational resources (OERs) and massive open online courses (MOOCs) as they relate to the future. Issues considered include varieties of openness, licensing and combining resources, access, the nature of definitions, types of MOOCs, change and the future.

Against Digital Research Methodologies
May 10, 2013. Digital Research Methodologies, Preston, UK, via Skype (Keynote). This is a description of my approach to research, based on problems inherent in traditional descriptions of scientific method, and the ways I have adapted my own work to compensate. It is a research process more like discovery, more like learning a language, than it is about forming hypotheses and confirming theories. Please note that the video was created May 9, 2013, one day ahead of the presentation, and that the audio is from the presentation itself, May 10, 2013. Both use the same slides. This event was funded by the ESRC Digital Social Research Fund administered by the University of Oxford.

Massive Open Online Support for Education (MOOSE)
May 06, 2013. University College of the North, Thompson, Manitoba via Google Hangout (Seminar). Discussion of the concept of Massive Open Online Courses as they evolved from the development of open online learning and evolved into a means of offering social and immersive learning online. The context was a discussion of officials from the University College of the North in Manitoba, which is mandated to provide learning to numerous communities scattered across a large northern environment.

Moocs and K12 Cloud: Privacy regulations and Risk Management
May 03, 2013. Ed Tech Innovation, Calgary, Alberta (Panel). Engaging panel with a researcher, educator, professor and a lawyer about the privacy and legal implications of MOOCs. Panel: Discovery Education Canada(Dean Shareski), BD&P (Jim Swanson), Alberta Distance Learning Centre (Verena Roberts), National Research Council Canada (Stephen Downes, panel moderator)

MOOCs in Business
Mar 27, 2013. QMOOC, Online, via Google Hangout (Panel). Panel discussion with Jay Cross, Dave Cormier, George Siemens, etc., on the subject of MOOCs in business. We talk about the origin of the term, where we think MOOCs are headxed, and what needs to happen with them.

MOOCs in Context: the re.mooc in Africa
Mar 11, 2013. Invited Talk, Lausanne, Switzerland, via Skype (Seminar). Organized with Alex Barchiesi, postdoc in EPFL Media Design Lab (after a PhD in Particle physics), based on his concept of the re.mooc: how to re-use the material coming from the xMOOC and reorganize it in a localized version that could facilitate the "After school" education in African coutries. 

We don’t need no educator: The role of the teacher in today’s online education
Feb 15, 2013. Utdanningskonferansen 2013, Bergen, Norway (Keynote). This presentation, delivered in Bergen, Norway, describes the changing nature of online learning with the introduction of massive open online courses, and in that context describes and explains the changing roles of the educator.

MOOCs and OERs
Feb 06, 2013. Conference Santiago de Compostela, Santiago de Compostela, Spain, via Hangout (Keynote). Overview of some of the early MOOCs we created, along with some more extended duscussion of the design principles we employed in creating MOOCs. Video (Vimeo) is titled Videoconferencia de Stephen Downes. I Congreso Internacional “Conocimiento, tecnologías y enseñanza” and is a Spanish translation of the talk (for English listen to the audio recording) (for Spanish audio click here).

Feb 05, 2013. Atelier REL , Moncton (Seminar). Presentation in French on the subject of MOOCs, their design and intent, and their relation to open educational resources (REL).

MOOC Workshop
Dec 07, 2012. Primer Congreso de Pedagogía y TIC, Ibague, Colombia (Keynote). All-day workshop on massive open online courses (MOOCs) offered at this conference in Ibague and recorded using Google Hangouts. No slides, no audio yet  (though I can extract it from the video). I think the recording went pretty well all things considered. Parts two and three of the video are below:  

The Virtual Learning Organization
Dec 06, 2012. Ibague Primer Congreso de Pedagogía y TIC, Ibague, Colombia (Keynote). I discuss the concept of the virtual learning organization from three perspectives: first, as an organization that manages virtual learning; second, as a learning organization that is virtual; and third, the virtual organization that learns. In the new world of virtual learning we need to have elements of all three. Alternative video source. More information. Local news coverage.

Open Discussion on the LMS and the MOOC
Nov 23, 2012. MoodleMoodUY, Montevideo, Uruguay (Panel). Discussion of the keynote on the topic of the LMS and the MOOC model. Some interesting topics covered, including the question of curriculum, assessment, and the nature of critical literacy.

The LMS and the MOOC
Nov 23, 2012. MoodleMootUY, Montevideo, Uruguay (Keynote). Keynote on the topic of the LMS and the MOOC model. Abstract: "With the widespread adoption of the massive open online course (MOOC) over the last year, questions are now being raised about the role of a learning management system (LMS) such as Moodle. Where previously the focus was on the management of course materials and cohorts progressing according to predefined objectives and curricula, the learning environment of the future is more open-ended and less overtly managed. In this talk Stephen Downes, one of the originators of the MOOC format, describes the differences between types of MOOCs, compares them to the LMS, and outlines the changes LMSs such as Moodle are looking at in the future." Conference report.

OER Minicourse
Nov 23, 2012. MoodleMoodUY, Montevideo, Uruguay (Seminar). 2.5 hour minicourse on the topic of open educational resources. This is a class session, not a lecture, so there are periods of chaos, group discussions, and more. Enjoyable, if confusing, listening. Topics covered include the definition of OERs, creating OERs, and OER metadata and discovery. Licensing is mentioned and covered in the slides but wasn't a major topic. G+ class page.

Sustainability and MOOCs in Historical Perspective
Nov 15, 2012. Simposio Internacional Estado Actual Y Prospectiva De La Educacion Virtual, Bogota, Colombia (Keynote). Overview of the historical factors leading to the development of massive open online courses, and discussion of what this history can tell us of the sustainability of MOOCs in the future. Image: Dr. Mauricio Alvarado, rector de la CUN y presidente de ACESAD,  Stephen Downes, conferenciante, Dr. Luis Bengochea, conferenciante y Dr. Néstor Arboleda, director ejecutivo de ACESAD

MOOC Tools (Not what you think)
Nov 02, 2012. Unbordering Education, Yerevan, Armenia (Workshop). Workshop describing a variety of tools that can be used to create a MOOC on the cheap. Follows the Aggregate-Remix-Repurpose-Feed Forward model.

Beyond Borders: Global Learning in a Networked World
Nov 02, 2012. Unbordering Education, Yerevan, Armenia (Keynote). In this talk I address the phenomenon of open online learning, and in particular the massive open online course (MOOC), and discusses how it opens new frontiers in learning. Through their use of open educational resources and a student-centered pedagogy, MOOCs make learning accessible to people no matter where they live. This is resulting in the transformation of the global education system such that advanced and formal learning is becoming increasingly accessible and affordable. In this talk I talks about the transformation of educational systems talking place, the policy implications of open online learning, and the practical implementation of open online courses.

L'apprentissage ouvert et les affaires
Nov 01, 2012. Forum sur l'économie du savoir, Edmunston, via Google Hangout (Keynote). Talk given en français on the subject of open learning, MOOCs and the lessons for small and medium businesses. Full text of the talk is available here. Sadly, the video shows only the remote audience, not the speaker and slides.

The Connective Learning Environment
Oct 08, 2012. Tele-TASK Symposium, Potsdam, Germany (Keynote). Overview of the model of learning informing the design of the first MOOCs, including a look at some aspects of the gRSShopper software we have been using to support the MOOCs. There is video on the website (but no easy way to show it here).

A True History of the MOOC
Sept 27, 2012. Future of Education, Online, via Blackboard Collaborate (Panel). A one-hour live and interactive webinar hosted by Steve Hargadon on the "true history" of the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) with Dave Cormier, Alec Couros, Stephen Downes, Rita Kop, Inge de Waard, and Carol Yeager. While a wave of courses from prominent universities are now labeled as MOOCs, we'll drill down on the connectivist roots of the early MOOC offerings and discuss the importance of the differences between them and the current breed. Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is here and a portable .mp3 recording is here. Mightybell Space: Resources, videos, links, and conversation about the interview can be found here.

MOOC Online Support
Sept 10, 2012. , Chile, via Hangout (Keynote). This presentation, delivered by Hangout to a group in Chile, focuses on MOOCs from the institutional perspective, highlighting the roles of harvesting, site management, user management, and distribution. (Please note that my information about the event has been lost, so if you have information, please let me know).

The World Beyond the Word
Aug 19, 2012. Destination: Innovation, Banff, Alberta (Seminar). In order to manage the deluge of data produced by modern technology, a rapidly changing society, and challenging environmental and economic systems, we need to relearn what we understand as social and scientific literacy. The students of today and the innovators of tomorrow will speak languages we barely recognize today. What are the fundamentals of these new literacies, how do we learn them and teach them, and how do they redefine innovation in the future? In this talk Stephen Downes describes a future in which learning is a creative act and the environments and technologies that will be needed to support this learning.

Converge Interview
Jul 17, 2012. , (Keynote). Tanya Roscoria for Converge Magazine. This is a discussion of our latest MOOC including some details about how the connectivist courses differ from other types of MOOCs. Also, we discuss just what is being 'opened' by open online courses. Sorry about the music in the background.

Models, Technological Resources and Knowledge Management
Jun 21, 2012. XIII Encuentro Virtual Educa, Panama City, Panama (Seminar). To offer effective e-learning it is important to get the model right, but this is difficult. I suggest that the internet itself is the model we need to use. This suggests a set of open learning resources that extends beyond content and even conversation but also activities and interactions.

Publishing Paradigms of the Future: Where are We Headed?
May 27, 2012. Congress of the Canadian Federation of Humanities and Social Sciences , Waterloo, Ontario (Seminar). This presentation depicts the future of publishing as open, digital and distributed, pointing to innovations such as eBooks, learning resource repositories, mobile applications, and the like. It points to the blending of social networks with learning resources, and looks at some of the supporting technology such as cloud storage, OAuth, and research sidebars.

Patterns of Progress
May 07, 2012. Comment survivre au progrès, Hearst, Ontario, via Skype (Seminar). I gave a talk today on the subject of progress for students in the Comment survivre au progrès? course being offered in Hearst, Ontario - a talk I would have liked to have given in French but decided out of caution to offer in English. In the first part, I survey the various ways of describing and looking at change, and in the send part, I look at these patterns as they cross our discussions of and conception of progress. I had Ronald Wright's A Short History of Progress in mind, which I read over the week-end, as well as David Wiley's latest effort to understand me.

Learning in a Digital Age: The reality and the myth
Apr 13, 2012. Learning and Teaching in a Digital Age: Myths and Reality, Tallinn, Estonia (Keynote). In this presentation I look at the positive side of myths, not focusing on the fact that they are untrue, but finding in them the way we create our own reality, project our own future, and talk to each other. If you are viewing the slides on SlideShare note that there are extensive notes on the slides.

Internet and E-commerce Law Round Table
Mar 29, 2012. Follow the Sun, Online, via Blackboard Collaborate (Panel). So what can you post online? Are there limits to posting photos of people doing illegal things in an effort to stop them? These and other issues are discussed in this panel.

Education as Platform: The MOOC Experience and what we can do to make it better
Mar 14, 2012. EdgeX, Delhi, India (Keynote). In this presentation I outline the motivation and design of the massive open online course (MOOC) and then outline a number of criticisms of the form as it has evolved thus far. My argument is that to the extent that a MOOC focuses on content, like a traditional course, it begins to fail. A MOOC should focus on the connections, not the content. I outline some ways of focusing on connections, using connectors. By way of an example, I discuss structured connections such as chess games and budget simulations. Full text is available: Click here.

Knowledge, Learning and Community: Elements of Effective Learning
Feb 29, 2012. Change 11 Online Course, Moncton, via Blackboard Collaborate (Keynote). I overview major elements of my contribution to the domain of educational technology.

Facilitating a Massive Open Online Course
Feb 24, 2012. IMU-LS, Kuala Lumpur, online, via WizIQ (Seminar). In this (nearly 2 hour online) talk Stephen Downes, one of the originators of the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) format, described the organization and management of a MOOC, beginning with the arrangement of technology, organization of learning materials, communications with students, support tasks, and interaction with guest presenters. This talk is based on fifteen years’ experience designing and delivering web-based instruction, as well as knowledge amassed though the delivery of six MOOCs to almost ten thousand students since 2008.

The Limits of Learning Design
Feb 23, 2012. Association for Learning Technology Seminar, London, online via Elluminate (Seminar). In this session I present my side of a debate or discussion with Diana Laurillard regarding the Limits of Instructional Design. I approach the question from the perspective of LD as a language, and suggest that as such it abstracts in a certain way and consequently defines and imposes a particular perspective on the topic, a perspective that is either arbitrary or cannot be supported from available evidence. The Elluminate recording and Diana's slides are available at the ALT Repository.

A Conversation With Stephen Downes
Feb 23, 2012. , (Keynote). Julie Suarez Interview in which I discuss the nature and application of the theory of connectivism. I talk about how networks form and are used by people (and entities) to create learning.

E-Learning: Générations
Feb 14, 2012. Clair 2012, Clair, New Brunswick (Keynote). Presented in French / Presenté en français Ces dernières années, j'ai travaillé sur deux grands concepts: d'abord, la théorie de l'apprentissage en ligne connectivist, qui considère l'apprentissage comme un processus de réseau et, deuxièmement, le massif cours ouverts en ligne, ou MOOC, qui est une instanciation de ce processus. Ceux-ci, cependant, ne représentent que la plus récente de ce qui peut être vu comme une série de «générations» de e-learning. Dans cet exposé, je décris ces générations et je discute de la façon dont ils ont conduit à, et sont une partie de, l'œuvre le plus récente dans l'apprentissage en ligne. (In recent years I have been working on two major concepts: first, the connectivist theory of online learning, which views learning as a network process; and second, the ...

Engagement and Motivation in MOOCs
Nov 23, 2011. CQU OLT Educational Technology, Online to Queensland, via WebX (Keynote). In this presentation I look at the issues of engagement and motivation in Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). I outline the development of MOOCs and some of the features that make them distinct from traditional courses. Then I look at some of the literature regarding online student engagement, and apply that with respect to MOOCs. I find that many traditional measures - such as counting attendance or page views - do not account for the sort of engagement we'd like to see, and is demonstrated for example in ds106. In addition, provision of the ability to determine one's own educational path or even to satisfy one's other motivations, may be necessary, but are not sufficient, to support motivation in MOOCs. In the end I consider the example of how motivation is created in gaming environments, and wonder whether MOOCs need challenges and the possibility of failure in order to stimulate student engagement. Please note that the video is a short 5-minute promo, and is not the ...

Interview on Blogging
Nov 20, 2011. , (Keynote). Interview about blogging. I talk a bit about my early days on the internet, and there's a history of my first articles on the web. I also talk about how to promote blogs so they will be found by other people. I also talk about how people use the internet, why they don't go to web pages, ranking blogs, etc. ("Would you rank the rivets on an airplane?")

Education in movement - against what? Debate
Nov 13, 2011. NFF konferansen: Utdanning i bevegelse, Oslo, Norway (Panel). This discussion follows my keynote address in Oslo, Norway, on the subject of thre multiple roles of the teacher. Some commentators are supportive of the idea of networked learning; others argue that the expanding role of the teacher will "add four more years" to teacher education (of course, my point is that different roles are undertaken by different and more specialized people). Originally saved on Vimeo.

We don’t need no educator: The role of the teacher in today’s online education
Nov 13, 2011. NFF konferansen: Utdanning i bevegelse, Oslo, Norway (Keynote). How often do we read about the importance of teachers in education? It must be every day, it seems. We are told about "strong empirical evidence that teachers are the most important school-based determinant of student achievement" again and again. The problem with the educational system, it is argued, is that teachers need to be held accountable. We are told we must fire incompetent teachers. Not just in the United States, but in the UK and elsewhere, the concern is that bad teachers must go. The problem with focusing on the role of the teacher, from my perspective, is that it misses the point. Though there may still be thousands of people employed today with the job title of "teacher" or "educator", it is misleading to suggests that all, or even most, aspects of providing an education should, or could, be placed into the hands of these individuals.

The Role of Educator in a Networked World
Nov 09, 2011. for EC&I 831: Social Media & Open Education, Alec Couros, Online, via Elluminate (Seminar). In this presentation I revisit the 'role of the educator' discussion I offered last year for the same course, offering a point of view stressing a new approach to learning, and drawing out the consequences of that in a series of new roles for educators, leading to the conclusion that the role of the educator itself will be unbundled in the world of online learning.

Social Network Technologies for Learning (2)
Oct 29, 2011. Competencia Digital Docente en la enseñanza de español, New York City (Keynote). A slightly revised version of the presentation on Social Networks given the previous day. The audio, however, is very different. Abstract: In this presentation, Stephen Downes offers an inside look at these technologies, how they work, what they can do, and where they will likely lead the future of learning online. Downes will first outline some well-known technologies such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, describing how they are used and outlining how they manage online communication in general.

Social Network Technologies for Learning
Oct 27, 2011. Competencia Digital Docente en la enseñanza de español, Providence, Rhode Island (Keynote). Social network technologies are reforming the way we communicate with each other inside and outside our learning environments. In this presentation, Stephen Downes offers an inside look at these technologies, how they work, what they can do, and where they will likely lead the future of learning online. Downes will first outline some well-known technologies such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, describing how they are used and outlining how they manage online communication in general.

Public Support for Free Learning: A Policy Framework
Oct 24, 2011. VLHORA - studiedag 'The Education Highway', Flemish Parliament, Brussels, Belgium (Keynote). In this talk I make the case for a community-based model of learning, where courses are structured as connectivist networks, describe some of the thinking behind the model, and outline a policy framework for the support of free learning.

Connectivist Learning: How new technologies are promoting autonomy and responsibility in education
Oct 21, 2011. XII Congresso Internacional de Teoria de la Educacion, Barcelona, Spain (Keynote). In this presentation I discuss the topic of autonomy as it relates to connectivism. I begin by making a case for autonomy, and then apply the four-factor model of autonomy to connectivist practice.

Connectivism and Personal Learning
Oct 17, 2011. Charles University Prague, Online, vie DimDim, to Prague (Keynote). Connectivism as a pedagogical theory is typically thought of in terms of networks – the making and traversing of connections. But the major practical implication of connectivism occurs in the organization of learning events and resources. Unlike traditional educational modalities, in which people work collaboratively, in a connectivist model, people work cooperatively.

Elements of Connectivism
Sept 22, 2011. Creativity and Multicultural Communication CMC11, Online to Saratoga Springs, NY via Elluminate (Seminar). Presentation to the ESC Creativity and Multicultural Communication course on the topic of connectivist pedagogy. The argument made is that this pedagogy is based on principles related to what makes networks successful.

Ed Tech Crew
Sept 17, 2011. , (Keynote). Online and network learning. MOOCs, personal learning, OLDaily, network learning, and more. Darrell Branson and Tony Richards.

How to Organize a MOOC
Sept 10, 2011. IV Innovar para Trascender Simposio de la COMINAIC, Ameca and Guadalajara, Mexico (Workshop). Long set of slides (really a compilation and reordering of four previous slide sets) for my workshop held in Ameca, Mexico (Setember 6, 2011) and Guadalajara, Mexico (September 7, 2011). The first day (for which there are no slides) I offered a demonstration of my gRSShopper system. The slides then examine the theory behind that application. Part 1, Ameca, Mexico, September 6 Download MP3 Part 2 (cut a bit short), Guadalajara, Mexico, September 7 Download MP3 Part 3, Guadalajara, Mexico, September 7 Download MP3

MOOC 2011: The Massive Open Online Course in Theory and in Practice
Sept 06, 2011. IV Innovar para Trascender Simposio de la COMINAIC, Guadalajara, Mexico (Keynote). In this presentation I set the MOOC within the context of the objectives of this symposium on curriculum design, provide an outline of the history of the MOOC, and use that history to create a description of MOOCs. See also The MOOC Guide.

After Moodle
May 04, 2011. Moodle Moot Canada 2011, Edmonton, Alberta (Keynote). In this talk I discuss what will be coming 'After Moodle' by means of a discussion of open learning, connectivism, and personal learning environments, including the sharing of some of what we experienced in massive open online courses.

Talking About All Things Open
May 04, 2011. Moodle Moot Canada 2011, Edmonton, Alberta (Panel). This plenary session explores the opportunity associated with the convergence of multiple related "open" initiatives. Imagine an education future that combines open source software, open access research publishing, open government/data, open educational resources, open pedagogies and open networks. What is the synergistic potential of these collective open endeavours?

The role of open educational resources in personal learning environments
Apr 29, 2011. Center for Distance Education 2011, Saratoga Springs, New York (Keynote). In this presentation, and in the Informal Discussion which followed, I looked at three major themes: personal learning environments, connectivism and open learning, and argued that each of these three needs the other two.

Informal Conversation
Apr 29, 2011. Center for Distance Education 2011, Saratoga Springs, New York (Seminar).

The Lecture Must Stand
Apr 14, 2011. Follow the Sun - Learning Futures Festival Online 2011, Leicester, via Adobe Connect (Debate). My side of a debate versus Donald Clark and James Morrison - their proposition was that the lecture must die, and I argued that the lecture must stand. For the web pages with the full videos, see the web presentation actually used during the talk. Donald Clark's slides are here.

exploring the o-rizon of online learning
Apr 14, 2011. Professional Development Forum - Exploring the e-Horizons of Open Learning, Western Australia, via Elluminate (Keynote). In this talk I look at the history of open learning and open educational resources and trace through the three (or four) states of openness in learning.

Beyond Workplace Learning
Apr 05, 2011. Swiss eLearning Conference #SeLC11, Zurich, Switzerland, online via IPMediaSuite (Keynote). Short presentation in which I outline the elements of the classical approach to workplace learning that can be and are being challenged by new forms of enterprise organization and workplace learning. (p.s. I have to own up to what I think was a poor answer to the question after the talk - on reflection, in response to the question of how managers ensure learning results, instead of saying it's impossible to manage and impossible to ascribe specific effect to specific causes, I should have talked about open work environments.)

The Role of Open Educational Resources in Personal Learning
Mar 29, 2011., Calgary, via Adobe Connect (Keynote). In this talk, I argue that rather than think of OERs as content objects, containing knowledge and information intended for transfer to the student, OERs should be thought of as the raw material a learner works with through the practice of managing their own learning. More specifically, the role of open educational resources is to function as a vocabulary of multimedia ‘words' with which learners converse with each other and with experts in the field. The main emphasis of this presentation is to speak of the role of OERs in the development of learning networks - these networks that are the characteristic result of conversations, and in which our academic and scientific communities are contained. This talk blends the point made in my recent Girona talk with the longer analysis of my 'Speaking in LOLcats' talks.

Supporting an Open Learning Network
Mar 29, 2011. V Jornadas SIG Libre, Girona, Spain (Keynote). In this talk I outline definitions of open as they relate to open educational resources, cover some areas of OERs, and introduce alternative ways to think about OERs. Alternative slides, with videos, actually used during the talk: vid slides.

Educational Projection: Supporting Distributed Learning Online
Mar 15, 2011. II Conferencia Internacional e-Learning 2011, Madrid, via GoToMeeting (Keynote). With the development of the personal learning environment, the open online course, and informal learning outside the institution, teachers and professors may be wondering what they can do to support education in this new environment. In this talk we will examine the mechanisms educational providers and institutions can employ in order to project learning resources and services into the community and workplace where they are needed. The talk will focus first on the principles of educational projection, and then discuss practical mechanisms, such as cloud services, event amplification and content curation.

Networked Learning: Making the Best Use of What We've Already Got
Feb 25, 2011. Emerging Social Technology UK, Dundee, Scotland via Skype, (Keynote). How to use easily available tools to deliver presentations and support learning online. If you’re still posting course content into your LMS, you’re doing it wrong Online learning isn’t about pushing content – it’s about engaging, interacting, doing.

Effective Learning Networks: The ‘Groups Versus Networks’ Argument Explained
Feb 15, 2011. Connectivism and Connective Knowledge MOOC CCK11, Online (Keynote). This presentation for our online course restates the 'group versus networks' argument first formulated in 2006. It describes the core principle of connectivism: to ‘know’ P is not to have a characteristic set of connections that we can point to and say ‘This is knowing that P’. Rather, it is to have any of many possible sets of connections such that input characteristic of ‘P’ produces output characteristic of ‘knowing that P’.

The PLENK, The PLE and We
Dec 01, 2010. Service New Brunswick Regional managers Meeting, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Seminar). In this presentation I outline the work done presenting connectivist style courses over the last two years, demonstrate the course screen, demonstrate the use of the gRSShopper backend to create a newsletter, and talk about the theory of distributed learning underlying the design. SNB's Stephen Dixon introduces the session and also, after the talk, described how such a system could be used to support communication and learning in government applications. The audio also include a Skype conversation with Jay Nath - - Director of Innovation from the City of San Francisco.

The Role of the Educator in the Digital World
Nov 30, 2010. TasEDay, Hobart, Tasmania, via Skype and (Keynote). In this presentation I argue that the role of the educator should be unbundled and treated as a set of more specific roles. A total of 23 different roles are identified and described. I also argue that we should consider organizing our educational system around the idea of provisioning lecturers, coordinators, mentors, etc. A transcript used to deliver this talk is available here.

The Role of Educator in a PLE World
Nov 17, 2010. EC&I 831: Social Media & Open Education, Online, via Elluminate (Seminar). In this presentation I argue that the role of the educator has become unbundled and is now a wide variety of different roles, usually performed by different people.

Facilitating Social Interactions
Nov 02, 2010. Webinar, Online (Panel). Campus Technology online panel. Sponsored by Moodlerooms, Intel and Dell. Talking about the transition from the learning management as a transaction system to something that supports a mobile and distributed audience, moving from structured to unstructured interactions, numerous domains instead of one domain.

The Future of Open Educational Resources
Oct 26, 2010. Open Educational Resources in the disciplines: a joint Academy Subject Strand conference , London, UK, via video (Keynote). I produced a video for this conference, which was shown over the lunch hour. If I ever find it, I'll post it here. Otherwise, I have no slides, no audio, nothing.

Dimensions of a Learning Network
Oct 25, 2010. XXVI Simposio Internacional de Computación en la Educación 2010, Monterrey, Mexico (Keynote). Reprise of the talk I gave in Vancouver, with some additional examples and extended descriptions. The talk is an overview of the concept of learning networks, describing how the theories about self-organizing networks describe how we learn, and how we can organize learning.

Facilitating Social Interactions: Measuring Engagement and Promoting Academic Success within the LMS
Oct 21, 2010. Webinar, Online (Panel). The Learning Management System is evolving rapidly, becoming a more flexible and interactive part of the classroom. As that happens, how can you better integrate the LMS into the campus classroom? How can you measure and analyse student participation in the social and collaborative technologies that are becoming part of a good LMS? Technologies already exist to collect basic data on student participation and interactions; the focus now is collecting more comprehensive data about online behavior in the classroom, then using the data effectively. The LMS of the future will help collect data, then produce sophisticated analysis and reports on-demand.

Personal Learning Environments and PLENK2010
Oct 20, 2010. Training Development Officers, Halifax, via Skype and (Seminar). I describe the organization of connectivist courses such as CCK08 and PLENK2010, demonstrate some of the technology, and discuss some of the thinking behind the design.

Dimensions of a Learning Network
Oct 06, 2010. The Power of Peer, Vancouver (Lecture). In this talk I overview the major elements of Connectivism and learning network theory, explaining how networks are used to foster learning,and describing the properties of stable or effective networks.

The Representative Student
Jun 23, 2010. Technology Enhanced Knowledge Research Institute (TEKRI) at Athabasca University, Edmonton, Alberta (Seminar). In this presentation I explore two related questions: first, what is the role of models and simulations both in delivering learning, and in learning about learning; and second, what is the relation between adaptive courseware, and the social network approach to learning based on creativity and communication? The Elluminate recording is available here.

Resource Profiles Markup Language
Jun 14, 2010. Atlantic Workshop on Semantics and Services, Fredericton, NB (Lecture). Description of RPML, and then demo of an RPML application and sample code. There doesn't appear to be any audio available.

Learning to Learn
Jun 03, 2010. DeLC Forum, Toronto, Ontario (Keynote). Slides, audio and video from my talk in Toronto. This is a presentation of some recent work I've been involved in, including Synergic3, PLE and Plearn, the connectivism course, and the critical literacies course. Also some content on how to learn, which was not actually presented during the talk. There's also a UStream video available of the talk, here.

OER Panel
May 18, 2010. 2010 Conference, Saint John, NB (Panel). Three-way discussion, from widely different perspectives on open educational resources. I recorded audio and Grant Potter recorded a UStream video of the panel presentations here (go to 5:45 to get to the actual starting point) and a second part here and a third part here Summary Two things 1. OERs and commercialization - not just the thing about CC NV licenses, but relevant - there's "free" and there's "free with conditions" and commercial access always involves ‘free with conditions' - most common condition is that you have to pay money – which violates any sense of free - but as recent kerfuffle's over Facebook show, conditions can be non-monetary - don't want to define ‘free' as "without conditions" but do want to suggest that payments & conditions impose an encumbrance on free, and that I'm generally in support of mechanisms that remove these encumbrances - ‘for profit' is not always evil – but they have a ...

Buenos Aires Meetup
May 08, 2010. MeetUp, Buenos Aires, Argentina (Seminar). Audio recording of our meetup session May 7 in Buenos Aires. About 20 teachers were there at Colegio Las Cumbres. In the end, the discussion centered around the key issue of whether to give guidance or let students discover on their own. No slides.

The End of Books
May 08, 2010. Festejar con Libros, Buenos Aires, Argentina (Lecture). Short talk given at the Buenos Aires Book Fair on the release of 'The Facebook Project'. I wrote the preface for the book (here's the pdf of the full book. In this talk I consider the effect of the end of books and raise the question of where we will locate our culture, our values, our myths and our facts. There is also a recording of the question and answer session. No slides.

Connectivism and Transculturality
May 07, 2010. Telefónica Foundation, Buenos Aires, Argentina (Lecture). Spanish translation of talk from the translator's booth (bits in Spanish translated to English) for Fundación Telefónica. Full transcript of the talk. This presentation looks at connectivist teaching. It describes principles of effective networks, and then applies those principles to the design of a connectivist course, as implemented using a personal learning environment. Original UStream recording. Here is coverage and summary from Claudia Ceraso. Also commentary from Anaclara Dalla Valle and Gabriela Sellart

Connectivist Learning and Teaching
May 06, 2010. Invited Lecture, Pilar, Argentina (Lecture). Presentation addressing what teachers need to do in order to learn from the internet. There is a second part, describing connectivist teaching, which was not presented, but is in the slides.

A Conversation in Tigre
May 02, 2010. Informal Conversation, Tigre, Argentina (Seminar). This is an informal conversation between myself and students of Alejandro Piscitelli's at his home. The conversation is fairly wide ranging, talking about reality and truth, right answers and practical solutions. Mostly, it's me offering my opinions - it's a bit one-sided - but I think it's entertaining.

We Learn
May 02, 2010. Symposium, Rosario, Argentina (Lecture).   The internet is the most powerful tool for education ever devised, but how best to use it? In this presentation I talk about using the internet to promote interaction, organize knowledge and get relevant information. In English with Spanish translation in the audio. Photo by Maria Affronti. See also commentary and links from Juan Domingo . Also, the Twitter stream from the talk. News media coverage. Twitter stream. The video is a composite made out of the videos still available October 4, 2016. Original UStreal videos (many of which were deleted by UStream): 001 002 003 004 005 006 007 008 009 010

Technology and Communication: Education in the Digital Era
Apr 29, 2010. VI Congreso Internacional - Cultura del Trabajo, Cordoba, Argentina (Panel). Panel discussion in which I outline the role of the personal learning environment and some of the work I've done in the area. English with a Spanish translation. The audio also includes presentations in Spanish from Raul Juarez, Juan Manuel Lucero and moderator Emilio Salomon. The panel from Congresos Cultura del Trabajo. Photo by the great onion. The audience at Congresos Cultura del Trabajo. My photo. From Congresos Cultura del Trabajo. Stephen Downes, Juan Manuel Lucero, Raul Juarez y Emilio Salomon. Photo by the great onion.

Free software and education: fighting the digital divide
Apr 29, 2010. Special Lecture, Cordoba, Argentina (Lecture). Presentation examining the logic and underpinnings of free and open educational content. English with Spanish translation throughout. An extensive presentation, with almost entirely new material, drawn from the influence of this Argentine city, the influence of Canadian thinking in media and education, and the principle of association that underlies connectivist epistemology and pedagogy. The presentation and lengthy Q&A runs at a bit more than two hours. I am very happy with this presentation, and even better, have a video version, which I will format and release as soon as I can. (Update October 4, 2016 - haven't found the video).

Personal Learning Environments
Apr 22, 2010. Interactive Technology in Education - conference , Hämeenlinna, Finland, by Video (Keynote). I created this video for my keynote in Hämeenlinna, Finland, because of course I could not attend because of the volcano. It described the major elements of the PLE system and talks about the environment and learning theory behind the PLE. Click here for a PDF transcript of the talk. (Video was on Blip, I have a copy I'll upload)

Connectivism in Practice: Critical Thinking as a Distributed Course
Apr 22, 2010. Interactive Technology in Education - conference , Hämeenlinna, Finland, by Skype (Seminar). In this presentation I describe the next step of my work in online connectivist courses, the Critical Literacies course that will be starting in June. This course attempts to teach the literacies I believe are needed to flourish in a connectivist environment; this presentation describes those literacies and that course.

Apr 09, 2010. R685 on the Web 2.0 (The World Is Open With Web Technology) , Online, via Breeze (Seminar). Though directed toward an examination of open educational resources and the DIY university, this talk ends up being an overview of a large swath of my own educational philosophy, as drawn from the statement that is posted on my home page. Audio (great sound) and slides are available. There is also a recording of the Breeze session available (the photo above is from about 1:03:11 of the Breeze recording).

Decentralized Learning
Mar 17, 2010. APOP Lunchtime Presentation, Montreal, Online via the Via Conferencing System (Seminar). In this online presentation for APOP (Association for the Educational Application of Computer Technology at the Post-Secondary Level-Montréal) I discuss the concept of decentralized learning. I begin with the physical model, as instantiated in the Connectivism course, then outline the epistemology of knowledge production, then describe the pedagogy of personal learning, and conclude with success factors. A long Q&A in which we discuss numerous issues follows.

A Conversation on Social Learning
Mar 16, 2010. LearningWave, Holland, via Skype (Seminar). Conversation with a group in Holland about recent developments in social learning. I focused mostly on the idea that the intent of social learning is to generate practice and experience with idea of growing or developing personal capacity (as opposed to learning as the 'transfer' of knowledge). We also talked quite a bit about the use of social networks and communities as a mechanism for evaluating learning. Participants were: Eline Noorberger, David Berg, Gerlinde Podt, Christine Marck-Apperloo, Jan Nieuweboer.

The Experience of Learning
Mar 12, 2010. 3rd Annual Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education Conference, Second Life (Keynote). This short talk summarizes the pedagogical model of personal learning that to me underlies the design of connectivist learning network methodologies. The presentation itself echoes some recent themes, while the questions took me into some very new ground reflecting on the learning experience itself. Part of the Networked Connectivism, Distributed cognition and PLNS panel at the Virtural Worlds Best Practices in Education conference hosted by Beth Davies (SL name: Michigan Paul). Moderator: LoriVonne Lustre. No slides; audio only.

Trends in Personal Learning 2
Feb 09, 2010. Trends in e-Learning 2.0, Online to Madrid, via DimDim (Keynote). Same slides as a few days ago, but the audio is very different, as this was a formal presentation. As before, I outline the major trends in personal learning that we are seeing in technology today, and I more clearly draw the connections between some of the separate trends - for example, personal creativity, interaction and networking, and simulation and immersion. Audio at Excellent sound quality.

Trends In Personal Learning
Feb 04, 2010. The Gaggle, Canberra, Australia, online via Wimba (Lecture). Audio and slides from my presentation last night, Trends in Personal Learning. Review of major trends in technology - personal access, content creation, presentation and conferencing, networking and community, immersion and simulation, augmented reality - and discussion of how these define and inform personal learning. Here's the poster for the session. // Archive once existed here: Info Name: FlexEd Virtual Session - 02/04/2010 11:56 URL.

Pedagogical Foundations For Personal Learning
Jan 11, 2010. Learning Futures Festival, Leicester, UK., via Elluminate (Keynote). In this talk I outline the differences between learning using a personal learning environment (PLE) and learning in an LMS. I argue that a PLE does what an LMS cannot do - it is designed to stimulate learning through an immersion into a community, as opposed to learning via presentation of facts. Pedagogy thus becomes the facilitation of skills for participation in such communities, which I tie to my critical literacy framework.

Managing Digital Rights Using JSON
Jan 09, 2010. 6th IEEE International Workshop on Digital Rights Management, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA (Lecture). In this presentation I describe a novel approach for the management of digital rights expression. The technique, which leverages JSON - Javascript Object Notation - does not involve parsing or processing of rights data, and not only does it solve the cross-domain scripting problem for rights expressions, it also provides an alternative to the language-based digital rights management patents held by ContentGuard. Here is the text of the paper.

Beyond Management: The Personal Learning Environment
Dec 03, 2009. IV Jornada del Programa Compartim de Gestió del Coneixement, Barcelona, Spain (Keynote). Reprise of my presentation from a few months earlier. In this presentation, I mix the presentation of the theory - chaos, complexity and mesh networks - with the practical technical development leading toward the personal learning environment.

The Role of Open Educational Resources in Personal Learning
Dec 01, 2009. International Seminar on Open Social Learning (OSL), Barcelona, Spain (Keynote). The role of open educational resources is to function as a vocabulary in which we converse. The main emphasis of this presentation was to speak of their role in the development of networks - these networks are the characteristic result of conversations.

New Tools for Personal Learning
Nov 25, 2009. MEFANET 2009 Conference, Brno, Czech Republic, via MVU Videoconference (Lecture). In this presentation I describe how new technologies are being designed in order to adapt to a rapidly changing and complex world. In this picture, learning is not a matter of knowledge acquisition and memorization, but rather, personal development in such a way that we become able to navigate and work with this knowledge and content in the same manner, with the same capacities, as the expert. This is a type of learning that is based on the creation of tools that support a mesh network; this network, in turn, supports the conversation and interactions that foster the development of an expert character.

Speaking in Lolcats, Take 2
Nov 24, 2009. ECI 381 (Alec Couros), Online to Saskatchewan via Elluminate (Lecture). Reprise of my talk from last week, in more detail and some new slides. The internet has introduced us to a world in which we can communicate with each other in a wide variety of media. Where formally we could only talk and sing to each other, now we can create videos, author animations, link to videos and images and cartoons, and more, mix and match these in a complex open-ended vocabulary. What it means to be literate in such an information age is fundamentally distinct from the literacy of the 3Rs, and teaching new literacy an evolving challenge for those of us still struggling to learn it. This talk looks at the elements of 21st century literacies, redefines critical thinking for the internet age, and suggests a redefinition of what we think of as 'core' curriculum. Elluminate session recording (with video) at

Speaking in Lolcats: What Literacy Means in teh Digital Era
Nov 12, 2009. Educational Computing Organization of Ontario, Richmond Hill, Ontario (Lecture). The internet has introduced us to a world in which we can communicate with each other in a wide variety of media. Where formally we could only talk and sing to each other, now we can create videos, author animations, link to videos and images and cartoons, and more, mix and match these in a complex open-ended vocabulary. What it means to be literate in such an information age is fundamentally distinct from the literacy of the 3Rs, and teaching new literacy an evolving challenge for those of us still struggling to learn it. This talk looks at the elements of 21st century literacies, redefines critical thinking for the internet age, and suggests a redefinition of what we think of as 'core' curriculum.

Open Education: Projects and Potential
Nov 12, 2009. Educational Computing Organization of Ontario, Richmond Hill, Ontario (Lecture). The internet offers society the opportunity to provide access to a free or affordable education for all. This concept is known as 'open education' and is the subject of various projects, such as 'Open Education Resources' (OER) or the Open Courseware Project (OCW). This talk will look at the principle of open education, talk about major projects, describe the role played by educational technology, and outline some of the challenges.

Four Struggles
Oct 02, 2009. Invited Talk, Fredericton, NB (Lecture). This is a guest presentation to a political science class at St. Thomas University in Fredericton. I look at an introductory and fairly typical chapter on globalization and outsourcing, and then argue that changes in political and economic organization run counter to the model proposed. In particular, the development of a network-based society runs against the model of corporate structures described. This all is set within a context of 'four struggles' that have shaped political and other conflict through history and today.

The Cloud and Collaboration
Sept 06, 2009. Ars Electronica Symposium on Cloud Intelligence, Linz, Austria (Keynote). In this presentation I describe the concept of the internet as a form of global consciousness. I look at the idea of human nature as it has traditionally been represented but suggest that a more appropriate model is that of a collection of neurons. With this model I analyse what a global consciousness would look like - not collaboration, as in the organization of a company or a nation, but cooperation, as in the actions of autonomous but interdependent and connected individuals. Text written for the talk is available online (this is not a transcript).

Aug 12, 2009. Open Debate, Vancouver, British Columbia (Debate). This was an all-day debate between David Wiley and myself on topics related to open content and the commercialization of learning resources. Topics covered include: What are OERs and Why do we want Them? What's Our Objective Here? Providing Learning vs Supporting Learning. Perspectives on OERs: Users and Producers. OERs Created by Providers vs. Created by Community. It was webcast, attended by about 20 people, and converted into a book. Reaction posts by David Wiley, Martin Weller. Original Audio: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.  

D2L 2009 Expert Panel
Jul 16, 2009. D2L Fusion 2009, St. Paul, Minnesota (Panel). The panel page was here. Here's the intro: "We only exist because of the needs of students. What do students need? How do we know what they need/what they think they need? What are the challenges? How will we provide what they need? What are the solutions?" My response: "many players are involved in education, and we need to attend to them." The UStream recording appears not to exist. The audio recording is available; enjoy.

Communities and Networks
Jul 07, 2009. VII seminari especialitzat en gestia del coneixement, Barcelona, online via Sclipo (Lecture). Presentation on the concept of the community of practice, tracing how it evolved from its original form resembling groups and featuring shared objectives and meanings, to one resembling networks, being composed more of interactions and conversations. Some technical difficulties (edited out of the video) truncated the presentation, unfortunately.

gRSShopper: Creating the Personal Web
Jul 07, 2009. Internal: Presentation to PLE group, Moncton (Seminar). Using slides created for an Innovation Forum presentation, this internal presentation amounted to an in-depth look at gRSShopper from the perspective as a prototype for the Personal Learning Environment. The video of the 1 hour 20 minute presentation is available and features not only slides but also screen capture of various features of gRSShopper being demonstrated. Alternative video.

Beyond Management: The Personal Learning Environment
Jun 24, 2009. Ed Media, Honolulu, Hawaii (Keynote). In this presentation, I mix the presentation of the theory - chaos, complexity and mesh networks - with the practical technical development leading toward the personal learning environment. A second audio file is also available.

New Technology Supporting Informal Learning
May 14, 2009. Challenges 2009, Braga, Portugal (Keynote). Photo by Storrao Description of the transition from linear adaptive learning systems to open networked based object oriented environments. Overview of the CCK08 online course, and description of the idea behind the PLE. See the paper associated with the presentation (note that the presentation actually delivered differs from the paper). See also this short video clip of part of the talk.

Social Media for Journalists
May 02, 2009. Atlantic Journalism Awards, Moncton (Keynote). Discussion of social media with and for journalists in Atlantic Canada.

Educamp 2009
Apr 18, 2009. Educamp09, Ilmenau, Germany, via Skype (Seminar). Discussion of web 2.0 and how it can be used to contextualize learning. No slides or video; Skype recording only.

Providing Learning in Social Networks
Apr 16, 2009. Symposium on Advanced Learning Technologies, Gagetown, NB (Keynote). Overview of the network approach to learning. New material, new slides. I place network learning in perspective with games and simulations, and describe it as an approach to be taken when we don't know what we want our students to learn (eg., in a complex or changing environment). I then overview the Connectivism course and gRSShopper. I then talk about future work, such as serialized feeds, the personal learning environment, and state based learning design. First 30 seconds of so (the intro) are low volume; the rest is fine. Note that PDF slides are 75 megabytes (I don't know why). More austere PowerPoint slides are available, as well as the originals created on a Mac (will not load all images in Windows).

Where is ICT Leading Education
Apr 06, 2009. Australian College of Educators, Melbourne, Australia (Lecture). A shortish presentation talking about where the older model of online learning and how the newer model reshapes that, followed by a series of pointed questions and answers. Very different from the usual fare. No slides

Learning 2.0: Learning Today and Tomorrow
Apr 06, 2009. ACER Melbourne 2009, Melbourne, Australia (Seminar). Workshop - the audio is roughly two hours - on the design and structure of a connectivist course. The real changes in eLearning will not come from the area of technological innovation but rather pedagogical innovation. Stephen Downes will speak on how ICT can be used now and in the future to improve teaching and learning. His talk will be based on research, debate in the field and new thinking about education. Stephen's concept of Learning 2.0 addresses digital learning and the need for communication, interaction and open access to the creation and use of knowledge in learning. Participants of this seminar will learn about the capacity of digital learning to enable inclusiveness, flexibility to support diverse learning styles and innovation for improved learning in education. Commentary from Lisa Wise (very good, very detailed), tsheko, Jenny Luca.

Connectivist Learning and the Personal Learning Environment
Apr 03, 2009. Invited Talk, Wollongong, Australia (Lecture). In this talk to the University of Wollongong I talk about the principles that informed the Connectivism course and then apply them in the description of the design of the course and assessment of how it went. Coverage by John Larkin. Image: Garry Hoban, Stephen and Nicola Johnson. Image: with John Larkin, Gary Molloy and Sui Fui John Mak

Personal Professional Development
Apr 01, 2009. LearnX, Sydney, Australia (Keynote). Talk on how to manage your own learning and development, given at LearnX in Sydney, Australia. Coverage from e-Learning Provocateur Ryan Tracey.

Edupunk: Open Source Education
Mar 15, 2009. SXSW 2009, Austin, Texas (Panel). Edupunk panel session. Links: Intro video; UStream Live Video; Dave Lester blog post; Live conference chat, submit window; Live conference chat, screen display; None of these links works any more; here's an article by Virginia DeBolt for posterity:   SXSW: Edupunk: Open Source Education Posted on March 15, 2009 Jim Groom, Stephen Downs, Gardner Campbell, Barbara Ganley   Edupunk an approach that results from a DIY attitude and brings the attitude of 70s punk rock bands to the classroom. Campbell. Tools to put course content online in the 90s we are problematic content delivery model. It’s become a business system rather than a relational driven system. Groom. LMS is a corporate logic system. It isn’t about learning. Need to think about going other ways. Downs. Internet teaches us that we don’t need to preserve power authority to learn. Ed designed by people doing the learning is what he’s ...

Technology Update
Feb 24, 2009. LERN Seminar, Online - teleconference (Seminar). Overview of current technology trends in learning, for the LERN online symposium. I'm sorry about the quality of the audio.

Future Learning
Feb 24, 2009. EC&I 831: Computers in the Classroom, Online, Elluminate (Seminar). Presentation to Alec Couros's online education course EC&I 831: Computers in the Classroom, Online, via Elluminate, University of Regina. I cover major topics in the future of online learning, including the knowing network, objects that explain themselves, ambient learning, sharing learning resources, etc. UStream recording.

CCK08 Course Recap
Feb 23, 2009. Special Seminar, Online, Elluminate (Seminar). The recording is now available in Elluminate - no guarantees it will run. We discussed a wide-range of topics, including lurking in online environments, lessons learned from CCK08, Stephen's serialized course feeds, what we'll do differently for the September '09 offering of the course, etc.

The Connectivism and Connective Knowledge course
Feb 18, 2009. Boeing Employees Seminar, Online, Elluminate (Seminar). Overview of the technology employed in the CCK08 course, design considerations, and principles of network knowledge employed. Presented February 18, 2009 to Boeing employees via Elluminate. There's no audio for this one, unfortunately.

Why Integrate the Internet into the Classroom?
Dec 18, 2008. PEI Teachers, Charlottetown, PEI (Keynote). (Very) lighthearted presentation outlining a set of reasons we should integrate the internet into the classroom. Delivered by Skype. The slides were cartoons drawn on flipcharts and displayed by hand (sadly, I never kept them). I'm not sure who the group was exactly, but I know it was a set of schoolteachers. This talk is very to this talk October 22 of the same year, delivered to a similar audience in PEI (but this one went over a lot better).

CCK08:The Connectivism & Connective Knowledge Course
Dec 04, 2008. Invited Presentation, Ottawa, Ontario (Seminar). The course on connectivism is probably the best (early) example of what we mean. We began with the course itself – what we wanted to cover. We then added communications tools. And then the students took over…

Connectivism: A Theory of Personal Learning
Dec 03, 2008. Educational Development Centre, Ottawa (Keynote). Overview of personal learning and personal learning environments, connectivism, and our experience in the CCK08 course. No audio, unfortunately.

Educamp Colombia Qustions and Answers
Nov 18, 2008. Educamp 2008, Bogota, Colombia, by Skype (Seminar). Question and answer session with participants of the Colombia EduCamp 2008 from Bogota. English, but translated into Spanish by Diego. Contains a discussion of autonomy, plus questions from the backchannel.

International Perspective
Oct 31, 2008. Annual Conference 2008, Edinburgh, Scotland, via Elluminate (Keynote). In this presentation by Elluminate to the e-Learning Alliance conference in Edinburgh, Scotland, I run through a fast-paced description of progress in the CCK08 online course thus far, outline my gRSShopper PLE software, and make soe remarks about the future of learning online.

Taking the Pulse of Key Sectors: Advanced Learning Technologies
Oct 31, 2008. Innovation Forum, Saint John, New Brunswick (Panel). This short presentation during a panel is a summary of trends in advanced learning technologies. I first outline it the standard way, by listing some major technologies. Then I outline the future in terms of major educational strategies. The slides cover only the last part of the talk, as the first part was completely ad libbed.

Oct 28, 2008. Innovation Forum, Saint John, New Brunswick (Lecture). Short 10 minute presentation to the NRC Innovation forum. I unfortunately mishandled the audio, so I only have slides. In the talk I provided an overview of gRSShopper.

Integrating the Internet Into the Classroom
Oct 23, 2008. PEITF Annual Convention, Charlottetown, PEI (Keynote). Presentation on why the internet should be integrated into the classroom punctuated in the middle by an argument from a number of teachers in favour of banning communications tools from the classroom. Not sure how well all the audio comes out. You'll definitely hear me, in way-over-amplified voice, wondering why. Slides with all the photos (needed because Mac gibbles PowerPoint files, something they could easily fix but won't) available in a 42 megabyte PDF file here.

Integrating the Internet Into the Classroom (Seminar Version)
Oct 22, 2008. Annual Conference 2008, Charlottetown, PEI (Seminar). Slides from my presentation in Charlottetown October 22, 2008. In this talk I talk about my newsletter software, recording talks for presentations, web conferencing tools, and fifteen reasons why technology should be integrated into the classroom.

Stephen Downes on Connectivism
Oct 11, 2008. Edcamp 2008, Germany, via Skype (Keynote). I describe how we set up the CCK08 course, talk about what the students added on, summarize the content of the course thus far, and outline the gRSShopper tool I'm using to do my part. Delivered via Skype to an educamp in Germany. Sorry about the echo in the voice. Links are here. Video is here (and here). No slides.

The National Research Council in New Brunswick
Oct 06, 2008. Invited Presentation, Moncton, New Brunswick (Keynote). Overview of the NRC cluster initiative in New Brunswick and NRC projects and initiatives. Some of the slides were provided by various other project leaders. Goals of presentation: to bring our perspective on the impact of ICT on businesses in a rural setting, and to talk about what NRC-IIT is up to (while linking to the main topic.

Open Educational Resources
Sept 26, 2008. Innovations in Learning 2008, San Jose, California (Seminar). Presentation on Open Educational Resources (OER) at the Brandon Hall Innovations in Learning conference. Talks about licenses, content models, funding models, some major initiatives, and more. No audio.

Personal Learning Environments
Sept 25, 2008. Brandon Hall Innovations in Learning 2008, San Jose, California (Keynote). Discussion of some of the principles of the personal learning environment with a look at my own gRSShopper software as well as the Connectivism online course. Original UStream recording.

MOOC and Mookies: The Connectivism & Connective Knowledge Online Course
Sept 10, 2008. eFest 2008 - Connected Learning, Auckland, New Zealand by Elluminate (Seminar). Description of the software environment used so support our Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) along with an outline of where the students have taken it and of the principles governing the design. Delibered online to eFest (Auckland, New Zealand) from Moncton, Canada

How I Know What I Know About The Web
Sept 09, 2008. iPED International Conference 2008, Coventry, UK, via Skype (Keynote). I ran into time issues in this talk, but still managed to cover the evolution of what we now (loosely) call 'the scientific method' from the original formulation as the HD-Model to scientific communities and society-wide knowing communities.

Expert Panel
Jul 22, 2008. D2L Fusion 2008, Memphis, TN (Panel). Desire2Learn Expert Panel featuring Stephen Downes, Barry Dahl, Michael Feldstein, Robbie Melton. After a short remark by D2L chair John Baker, each panelist outlines what they thing should be the future of online learning. Then the chaos starts as the discussion - streamed live on the web and including the use of a backchannel in the auditorium - ranges far and wide. The video was archived in UStream but appears to be lost.

Free Learning
Jul 17, 2008. Free Knowledge, Free Technology, Barcelona, Spain (Keynote). In this talk I combine my thoughts on freedom and free learning with a discussion of networked learning and connectivism. I additional discuss my reasons for prefering a 'non-commercial' license for educational materials.

The Future of Online Learning - Ten Years On
Jul 09, 2008. Academic Fest, Online, from Canary Islands to Madison, Wisconsin (Keynote). I am reworking my paper 'The Future of Online Learning' and this presentation covers thoughts from the first couple of sections of that. It was conducted via Skype (XWindows failed yet again) from an internet access point in a (noisy) hotel in the Canary Islands (which had been as silent as a tomb every day prior to this).

Beyond the Classroom: From Virtual to Reality
Jun 28, 2008. Congreso Internet en el Aula, Madrid, Spain (Keynote). In this presentation I take the ideas from my 2001 presentation 'From Virtual to Reality' and update them for 2008, missing in discussion of social networking and e-learning 2.0 to supplement the basic thesis that online learning moves education of out the text-based language-based classroom and into the community… and thereby makes it more real. Miguel Guhlin summarizes my talk (post now lost). See also a longish post from Dolors Capdet (in Spanish) summarizing the speeches given by the Spanish Ministers of Industry and Education (they directly preceding my talk).

What Learning Design Could Be
Jun 26, 2008. 2008 European LAMS Conference, Cadiz, Spain (Keynote). Presentation on Learning Design and the LAMS conference in Cadiz, Spain. I outline where learning design is now, identify some presuppositions, show how a web 2.0 approach changes those presuppositions, and then outline collaborative and open design processes using objected oriented games as an example. WMV audio.

The Web of Data: Next Generation Internet Services
Jun 22, 2008. ResNet 2008, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Keynote). A look at the rapidly evolving world of online data and services, focusing on the way students and technologies have changed, the new attitude of internet access as a given and even a right, the phenomenon of edupunk, people helping each other learn, and learning in a mesh network. Big presentation, lots of examples.  See also this email.

Light, Agile and Flexible: Collaborating the Web 2.0 Way
Jun 04, 2008. Innovations in e-Learning, Fairfax, VA (Keynote). Somewhat chaotic presentation (I used the conference backchannel chat again) in which I talk about collaboration with respect to web 2.0. Wendy Wickham provides a summary of the session. More from the same conference.

Supporting Open Access
May 16, 2008. TLt Summit, Saskatoon, SK (Seminar). This session describes the need for open access to scholarly teaching and research materials, describe different types of open access, including common open access licenses such as Creative Commons and GFDL, describes technologies that support open access (such as Open Journal Systems, Open Archives Initiative, and DSpace), and outlines the institutional policy framework that best enables sustainable open access. No audio.

Ten Futures
May 16, 2008. TLt Summit, Saskatoon, SK (Keynote). My presentation at the TLt conference in Saskatoon describing, in the process of sketching ten possible futures, how anyone can predict the future. Attendees did not actually see these slides - they saw artifacts of their own creation posted on the screen. Image: Rodd Lucier.

My Digital Identity
May 06, 2008. e-Portfolios, Montreal, Canada (Keynote). A scattered presentation that looks at authentication and identification, resource profiles, and e-portfolios. Mixed in with notions of the self, potentiality, historicity, and dimensionality. With a description of OpenID in the middle. The transcript of the talk is available.

Two Approaches to E-Learning
Apr 19, 2008. EduCamp 2008, Germany, via Skype Video (Keynote). In this Skype talk I looked at two different approaches to learning - the artificial intelligence way, and the connectionist way - and sketched differences between them. I also described how the connectionist principles inform learning design. No slides for this talk; it was recorded at the other end and I'll post video as soon as it's available.

Applications of Social and Collaborative Technologies in Education
Apr 08, 2008. Symposium on Advanced Learning Technologies, Fredericton, NB (Lecture). My objective in this presentation was not only to describe the changing nature of community, and not only to describe how Web 2.0 applications create community as well as replace your Office applications, but also to talk to New Brunswickers about the role our province can play to help educators share learning with each other online. All new slides.

Personal Learning
Mar 11, 2008. EC&I 831 class, Saskatchewan, via Elluminate (Seminar). Audio and slides (I have video but the nearly two hour show will take some time to get out of the camera and uploaded to Google Video) of a presentation and discussion I had in Alec Couros's online class based in Saskatchewan. The slides are a rerun - sorry - but the audio is completely new and includes my first public presentation of my website software - the same software that is now only days from being posted on SourceForge. There should be an Elluminate and UStream recordings as well - I'll pass those on from Alex when I get links.

How I Learn
Mar 05, 2008. Internal Presentation, Moncton, New Brunswick (Seminar). Internal presentation that revisits the idea of the three major elements of personal learning: relevance, usability, and interactivity.

Feb 26, 2008. NRC Koffee Klatch, Moncton, Fredericton by Videoconference, Adobe Connect (Seminar). No slides, audio or video available, sorry - not because I'm being secretive, but because the recording failed.

Learning 2050
Feb 25, 2008. Faculty Development Institute, Online - ZoomCall (Lecture). Fifteen minute talk followed by fifteen minutes of questions on the long-term trends in learning. I talk first about how learning will talk place in the long term, then I talk about the types of learning (the 'Three Ls') people will need. Then I talk about the underlying tchnology trends. All new slides!

E-Learning 2.0: What It Means, Where It's Going
Feb 21, 2008. The Business Case for eLearning 2.0, Online - WebX (Keynote). Presentation I did for Mzinga is that (the result of a merger between KnowledgePlanet and Shared Insights). I looked at what e-learning 2.0 means to me personally, then what it means to students in general, and how it shaped learning. I also talked about trends in learning - especially as these new technologies come up against traditional environments. I finished with a quick summary of the underlying technologies.

Feb 12, 2008. New Learners need New Teaching, Online video presented in Bloemfontein, South Africa (Keynote). This is a ten minute video created for and shown at a session hosted by DreamEngineers in South Africa, New Learners need New Teaching, hosted by Nico Baird.

The Reality of Virtual Learning
Jan 30, 2008. DNDLearn, Cornwall, Ontario (Keynote). What is reality? I look at different ways of asking the question: real vs artificial, real vs fake, real vs virtual, real vs illusory, real vs delusion. I talk about what counts as real in our world, and the role we play in creating reality. I tal;k about how the changing nature of reality also means a changing nature of learning, moving from the idea of remembering content to the idea of creating our own knowledge as we go.

Web 2.0, E-learning 2.0 and the New Learning
Jan 30, 2008. Learning Technologies Conference, London, UK, presented online (WebX) (Lecture). This presentation examines web 2.0 and the intersection of the worlds of education, work and home. It contrasts 'messy' versus 'neat' content production and highlights the role of user-generated content in learning. It presents learning as a stream or a utility, and learning design as being user-managed and user-centered.

Web 2.0 in Learning
Jan 14, 2008. Web 2.0 in Learning, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (Workshop). Two day seminar. I have audio of presentations from the first day: Morning,Afternoon. Filled up the recorder part way through the afternoon. I covered major tools, technologies and design approaches using web 2.0 applications to support learning. ZaidLearn has extensive coverage. You can also read the workshop plan document.

Why Integrate the Internet Into the Classroom?
Dec 18, 2007. 2007 Conference, Charlottetown, PEI, by videoconference (Keynote). I have an audio of this talk but no slides and video (I tried to create video). This talk is about moving ourselves into the internet age. I offer a set of 'reasons' why we should use the internet in the classroom. For example: "Because collaboration on the test is no longer cheating". And "Because you should learn something about Facebook."

Educamp Colombia - Medellin
Dec 07, 2007. Educamp Colombia - Medellin, Medellin, Colombia (Keynote). Audio file is the translated version - Diego Leal introduces the session in English, and then the talk by Stephen Downes is recorded in Spanish. Diego Leal also describes the program in this article. The same slides are used as were used in Bogota two days earlier.

Educamp Colombia - Bogota
Dec 05, 2007. Educamp Colombia - Bogota, Bogota, Colombia (Keynote). Audio file - begins in Spanish as Diego Leal introduces the Educamp. Then there's a delay of several minutes while everyone gets their translation devices. Then Stephen Downes speaks in English. Video in English: my presentation, an overview of network learning and the concepts behind the Educamp. Original Sony .dvf recording.

Learn Yourself
Nov 22, 2007. Sosiaalinen media opetuksen ja oppimisen tukena (SMOOT), Finland, Online (Keynote). My presentation to Sosiaalinen media opetuksen ja oppimisen tukena (SMOOT) November 21, 2007. How do you as educators, I ask, create your own learning? How do you create the best learning for yourselves? No audio, sorry.

Free Learning and Control Learning: On the So-Called Failure of Constructivist, Discovery, Problem-Based, Experiential, and Inquiry-Based Teaching
Nov 13, 2007. SURF Education Days Keynote, Utrecht, Netherlands (Keynote). My response to Kirshner, Sweller and Clark's paper on the so-called demise of non-instructivist forms of learning. Resources: - here's the Kirschner, Sweller Clark paper I am responding to. - SURF Education Days conference site - my summary of their paper - background readings related to the paper and the issues raised - Respond to criticisms from Kirschner (and a video of the talk) - Transcript of the talk  

Reflections from the 2007 AECT Convention
Oct 27, 2007. AECT Annual International Convention, Anaheim, California (Keynote). Closing keynote for AECT in Anaheim. The purpose of this talk was to reflect on the various presentations and events at the conference and think about the major issues raised. I chose to contrast the traditional academic paper with web-enabled forms of communication like the email newsletter. I ask whether there is ‘must read’ and ‘must cite’ literature in our discipline, and further, what purpose would it serve?

Second Annual Forum on Creativity
Oct 26, 2007. AECT Annual International Convention, Anaheim, California (Keynote). Panel discussion on creativity and especially the teaching of creativity. Issues covered include the question of whether people are born creative and whether people can be trained to be creative, and whether you can test for it. This parallels similar questions of nature versus nurture that come up in, for example, intelligence. Another issue concerns the relation between the information processing model of cognition and creativity - the mechanistic models of cognition we have aren't good at talking about where ideas come from in the first place. There was video, but it appears to be long gone. No slides, but the text of my presentation is available.

A Kaleidoscope of Futures: Reflections on the Reality of Virtual Learning
Oct 25, 2007. AECT Annual International Convention, Anaheim, California (Keynote). "The reality is…” The use of ‘reality’ as a rhetorical device is the enemy of innovation Almost everything that we think is real is actually a construction of inferences and interpretations that we misinterpret as reality. And unfortunately, the belief that we are directly observing and understanding 'reality' discourages us from trying to change it. (There was a video on Google Video but it has vanished; if I find it in my archives I'll repost it).

Interactive Unpanel: Industry Leaders Answer Your Questions
Sept 25, 2007. Research Innovations in Learning Conference, San Jose, California (Panel). No audio (recorder failed) or slides, sorry.

E-Learning 2.0 in Development
Sept 25, 2007. Research Innovations in Learning Conference, San Jose, California (Keynote). Contrasts the (traditional) AI approach to learning with the Connectivist alternative. In a similar manner, contrasts traditional network semantics with lightweight Web 2.0 alternatives. Describes core technologies and apply them to create e-learning 2.0. Concludes with an outline of the personal learning environment.

Collaboration Tools and Web 2.0
Aug 14, 2007. Invited Talk, Online to Toronto (Lecture). Presentation to the Council of Ontario Universities, providing an overview of web 2.0 tools for e-learning and collaboration. It only took me four years to add the video to this presentation. ;) But it was added on Blip, which means a few years later it disappeared.

Web 2.0 and Your own Learning and Development
Jul 23, 2007. Invited Talk, Online to London, UK (Keynote). Presentation describing how to use the web - and especially web 2.0 - for your own learning and development, based on three principles: learning should be interactive, usable and relevant. Presented by video to the British Council, July 23, 2007. No audio, sorry. Another disappeared Blip video.

How the Net Works
Jul 19, 2007. Annual Conference 2007, Videoconference to Adelaide, Australia (Keynote). Learning online is different from learning in a classroom. Using tools like blogs and wikis, students do more than merely absorb content, they engage in conversations with a community. But how does that help? Why isn't it just a chatty waste of time? It is arguable that the use of the internet creates better conditions for learning. In this presentation, Stephen Downes outlines those conditions and explains how employ them in the design of online learning.

Trends and Impacts of E-Learning 2.0
Jun 13, 2007. International Conference on OpenCourseWare and e-Learning, Taipei, Taiwan (Keynote). Timeline of my activities in open learning and e-learning, and an analysis of trends in the present and future. Presented to International Conference on OpenCourseWare and e-Learning, Taipei, Taiwan.

Open Educational Resources and the Personal Learning Environment
Jun 10, 2007. International Conference on OpenCourseWare and e-Learning, Taipei, Taiwan (Seminar). What is an open educational resource (OER)? Not just content, but capacity. That's why we need to look at how they are produced and not just how they are used. This presentation argues for a model of OERs based on community use and production. The type of content produced is heavily influenced by the funder. Universities produce courses . Governments produce institutions. Publishers produce books, journals. What would the recipients produce?

OERs in Sustainable Perspective
Jun 03, 2007. Standing Conference of Presidents (SCOP), Heerlen, Netherlands (Lecture). So long as we think of OERs as charity… as something we create and that we give to the indigent OERs will never be sustainable Here's the new model: Adobe: “we want to be the toolmaker”; Google: GEAR, open source tools . OERs today are about giving people the means to create and then stepping out of the way. Flickr Facebook YouTube Blogger MySpace Yahoo-Groups Revver Writely Wikipedia LiveJournal WordPress Drupal PHP... No audio.

Things You Really Need To learn
May 29, 2007. Landelijke Dag Studievaardigheden, 's Hertogenbosch, Netherlands (Keynote). Outline of ten things you really need to learn (the basics of an education, you might say), some discussion of how we have traditionally learned them and some things to watch for, and a description of how new technologies are helping us learn them now. No audio.

Learning and Communities in the Web 2.0 Era
May 23, 2007. e-learning 2.0 Symposium, Moncton, New Brunswick (Panel). No audio, video or slides. This presentation covered the development of web 2.0 tools and how they are being used to create learning communities.

Personal Learning the Web 2.0 Way
May 19, 2007. Webheads in Action Online Conference, Global, online (Keynote). Descripes how the PLE contrasts with Learning Design (LD). Like AI, LD requires knowledge Acquisition, subject matter experts, and knowledge representation. But the modern world - and modern learning - are too chaotic for this to work. Instead, learning is like pattern recognition. Audio Recordings from 2007: - 2:00 p.m. , - 3:00 p.m. keynote Audio also here and here

Imagining Canada's Best Online Course: An Open Access Project
May 14, 2007. 2007 CADE/AMTEC conference, Winnipeg, Manitoba (Panel). Panel discussion where we allowed ourselves to dream big for a little bit.

The Meaning is the Message
May 13, 2007. 2007 CADE/AMTEC conference, Winnipeg, Manitoba (Seminar). This presentation pays homage to McLuhan by reconsidering the slogan 'the medium is the message' by considering it against representationalist theories of meaning. The idea that a message signifies or stands for something, and that this creates the meaning, is questioned. Instead, the proposal is that the message itself contains the meaning; it is what it is, not what it stands for, and this is what the recipient has to work with when interpreting it him or her self.

Virtual Worlds in Context
May 09, 2007. Symposium 2007, London, England (Lecture). Since the days of the now fabled 'Adventure' virtual worlds have long been a staple of online life. The most recent generation, 3D environments, includes games such as World of Warcraft and discussion rooms such as Second Life. These environments share some of the attributes and many of the limitations of their predecessors. Can the environment serve a significantly large number of people at the same time? Can individuals migrate their characters from one environment to the next? Who makes the rules in such environments? In this talk it is proposed that the principles that govern the World Wide Web would well serve the world of 3D environments. By distributing the load - and the ownership - using a ccommon client that accesses worlds from a large number of interoperable open source servers, the problems of scale and ownership could be addressed while preserving the best of the 3D environment: a place to visualize different realities, to get together to talk about them, to ...

E-Learning Panel
Apr 22, 2007. E-Learning Guild 2007, Boston, Massachusetts (Panel). Discussion of learning and especially informal learning, as supported by web 2.0 tools, the bottom-up adoption model, social media and blogging in learning.

Personal Learning
Apr 21, 2007. E-Learning Guild 2007, Boston, USA (Seminar). How do you teach if you no longer have power over students? This is the world of network learning. It's impossible topredict things, it's the breakdown of order. It’s Chaos! No principles or rules describing ‘quality’. Individual preferences only. No rubric or metric. No ‘peers’ or ‘committee of experts’. Evaluations are not an aggregation – no votes.

The Future of Online Learning and Personal Learning Environments
Apr 18, 2007. Congreso Internacional de e-Learning, Bogota, Colombia (Keynote). A look at some of the recent accomplishments in e-learning, an outline of network learning, and a description of personal learning environments.

Networks and Learning
Apr 10, 2007. Invited presentation, Cambridge, Massachusetts (Keynote). "What do you say, when you come from New Brunswick, to MIT?" I began by summarizing the talk by Charles Vest at Snowmass, in particular his remarks on diversity and autonomy. And truth. These describe the properties of a network that will lead most reliably to a network that will lead to emergent knowledge that is reliable.

Outside the Envelope
Feb 21, 2007. Invitation, Teleconference (Seminar). No slides or audio. Invited talk for IBM.

Toward a New Knowledge Society
Feb 16, 2007. Invited Seminar, online (Seminar). My presentation to the VENUS seminar on Wednesday. In this talk I describe connective knowledge, and in particular I compare it with traditonal knowledge, both on the level of generalizations (which correspond to pattern recognition) and concrete particulars (which correspond to complex linkages between entities). The online seminar was seen in six European locations as well as streamed online. (Click the title of this post to see my new-style presentation page. Enclosure should also be working, for those who like to listen to podcasts.)

The Recognition Factor
Feb 08, 2007. Online Connectivism Conference, Online, Elluminate (Lecture). This talk draws out the foundation of connectivist epistemology: The theory… Concepts are not words … They are patterns in a network (like the mind, like society) There is no specific place the concept is located – it is distributed as a set of connections across the network Other concepts are embedded in the same network they form parts of each other, they effect each other. Old links (UofM, Google Video links no longer working): Description, GoogleVideo recording, Audio recording, .ppt slides, Chat transcript.

Digital Rights Management
Jan 11, 2007. Online Conference, Online, via Centra (Seminar). Online presentation covering the topic of digital rights management, breaking it down into three major aspects: the expression of the the rights, authentication and verification of the user's identity, and third, some sort of protection or means to control access to the resource. Also covers the areas DRM can be applied: the resource itself, the access point where we get the document, and to the entire network. I have no record of this talk other than this audio, so I don't know who it was presented to.

Web 2.0, E-Learning 2.0 and Personal Learning Environments
Dec 14, 2006. Special Session, Online (Centra) (Seminar). This talk traces the concept of the personal learning environment as it is derived from social networks and web 2.0. It also related the concept to Wegner's communities of practice. It compares social networks (such as instant messaging networks) with connectionist networks. Higher-quality audio.  

EduPatents: The Gathering Storm
Nov 27, 2006. TeachU Seminar, Online (Elluminate) (Keynote). Discussion with Michael Feldstein and OLN's Cable Green on edupatents and, in particular, the Blackboard patent. In addition to some interesting back and forth between the three of us, we were also visited by Blackboard counsel Matthew Small, who added his own perspective on things near the end of the session. The Elluminate archive may be accessed directly (you'll need to install Elluminate to make it work) and an MP3 recording of the session (for those who cannot or won't install Elluminate) is also available

Understanding Learning Networks, Reprise
Nov 02, 2006. Invited Talk, Moncton, New Brunswick (Seminar). The Concept… Learning is centered around the interests of the learner (which may be arts, history, computing…). This learning is immersive – learning by doing – and takes place not in a school but in an appropriate environment (such as a living arts centre). The computer connects the student to the rest of the world, no matter where they are.

Understanding Learning Networks
Oct 28, 2006. Fourth EDEN Research Workshop, Castelldelfels, Spain (Keynote). The Concept… Learning is centered around the interests of the learner (which may be arts, history, computing…). This learning is immersive – learning by doing – and takes place not in a school but in an appropriate environment (such as a living arts centre). The computer connects the student to the rest of the world, no matter where they are.

The Future of E-Learning
Oct 21, 2006. CGA Canada National Educators Meeting, Toronto, Ontario (Seminar). My talk at the CGA educators' meeting in Toronto. The sound in the audio is a bit faint for the first speaker, Mark Bullen, an Associate Dean from BCIT. I speak after him and discuss blogs in learning, aggregation, connectivism, and learning networks. This is a short and breathless statement of the major trends as I see them at the moment.

Learning Networks and Connective Knowledge
Oct 16, 2006. Invited Session, Charlottetown, PEI (Seminar). The slides form a nice summary of the paper, if you didn't want to read the paper. I thought it was a good session, not because of the quality of my discourse (in fact, there are some pretty awkward moments in there) but because it shows some of the thinks I need to think more deeply about. It was a pretty good back and forth - Dave Cormier kept saying, "This is great audio." Yeah well I guess it's good to see the points where people disagree with my theories and take apart my presentation. And I suppose it's good to post them on my website.

Oct 06, 2006. LearnNB 2006, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Panel). I am in Fredericton today for the LearnNB meeting - LearnNB is the local e-learning industry group, associated with CSTD and ASTD. I was pleased to be able to sit on a panel chaired by Ken Reimer looking at government and industry collaboration in the sector.

Groups vs Networks: The Class Struggle Continues
Sept 27, 2006. eFest, Wellington, New Zealand (Keynote). This is a cornerstone talk for me. It was my final talk in New Zealand after a marathon trip, and it resolved into a discussion of the distinction between groups and networks, how traditional learning tries to force us into being part of a group (the way it forces cattle boys off their mountains) and how an alternative network-based theory of learning is more appropriate for multiple societies and multiple cultures. The full text of the talk is here; the OLDaily post describing it is here.

Online World
Sept 27, 2006. eFest, Wellington, New Zealand (Seminar). 2006 has seen the emergence of the personalized web, the interactive web, the web that places a premium on participation and community. How should the learning sector respond? The initial reaction from educational institutions has been negative, with access to many of the new applications blocked and banned by administrators. But in the longer term we will need to meet the students where they live, learning how to participate in their online world. Stephen Downes, an educational technologist who has pioneered many of the new technologies, will offer his thoughts and suggestions. No audio.

Digital Rights Management
Sept 15, 2006. IT Integrators Congerence, Sydney, Australia (Seminar). Overview of digital rights management and the ethics of file sharing. This presentation summarizes my grid defining different strengths of DRM based on measures taken and the locality of application.

Blogging and Learning
Sept 15, 2006. IT Integrators Conference, Sydney, Australia (Keynote). Discussion of what a blog is (as defined by format, not content) and how it is used in learning. I offer an overview of current blogging systems, discuss the use of blog post aggregation and RSS, and provide examples of blogs in learning. Finally, I connect the use of blogging in learning communities with the discussion of social network functionality as described by people such as Duncan J. Watts. A nice opportunity to merge some thoughts on the role of blogs in learning with the idea of blog objects as words in a conversation. 

Future Learning Resources
Sept 12, 2006. Learning Technologies: The Next Five Years, Cape Town, South Africa (Seminar). Overview of what the future of learning technology will look like, beginning with a discussion of what doesn't work (over-engineered solutions with numerous requiremen ts and many moving parts) and what does (simple, interoperable and usable systems). Given this perspective I offer a future dominated by networks and sharing, as seen for example in RSS and blogging networks.

E-Learning 2.0: Tools for Meaningful Learning
Sept 12, 2006. Invited Session, Cape Town, South Africa (Seminar). No slides for this one. Informal seminar in a workroom with members of the online course development team at the university. I talk about useful tools for building e-learning, such as using Audacity to record the talk and Shoutcast/Icecast to distribute them (I talk about listening to my iRiver when I sleep and listening to the recordings, essentially talking myself to sleep). Intended to cover Web 2.0 tools, it went a little off topic (as it was supposed to) and became a look at just what Web 2.0 learning is supposed to be.

Learning objects: What are they good for?
Sept 06, 2006. WWW Applications, Bloemfontein, South Africa (Keynote). This was a talk filled with technical glitches, but ultimately we were successful in broadcasting the world's first Skypecast keynote. Unfortunately, this knocked out the audio recording, which hence consists only of about 4 minutes of preliminary introductions. We recorded the Skypecast, but these are no longer maintained by Skype. People appreciated seeing us debug the audio live on stage to start the talk. Once we got going, we covered the definition of learning objects, objections to them and criticism of their use, and what would actually work to sustain a learning object economy.

E-Learning 2.0: Tools and Topics
Sept 05, 2006. WWW Applications, Bloemfontein, South Africa (Workshop). I had a nice time in the Free State capital of Bloemfontein, where I conducted a preconference workshop September 5 and a keynote address September 6. The workshop, E-Learning 2.0: Tools and Topics, was based on my wiki presentation (link no longer works and wasn't archived) though to be honest, we hardly touched the wiki. That said, the live Skypecast worked beautifully. Here's the audio: part one (14 meg), part two (8 meg), part three (24 meg).

Cooperation and Competition: National Learning Object Repositories
Jul 28, 2006. Objetos de Aprendizaje (OA) y Redes de Alta Velocidad, Bogota, Colombia (Keynote). Based on my experience with eduSource and related projects, this talk provides an overview of learning object repository architectures, identifies core functionalities, and provides examples of several national repository networks. I also talk about open archives, OAI tools, and the e-Framework. I discuss issues in repositories, open (and open source) alternatives, and the question of federation versus harvesting.

Learning Objects: Their Use, Their Potential, and Why They Are Not Dead Yet
Jul 27, 2006. Objetos de Aprendizaje (OA) y Redes de Alta Velocidad, Bogota, Colombia (Keynote). Outline of the traditional concept of learning objects, point to the major objections, and outline how Web 2.0 reshapes our understanding of them. This talk gets technical in places, with a lot of the concepts drawn from my Learning Objects paper.

E-Learning 2.0: Why The New Tools?
Jul 18, 2006. e/merge 2006 - Learning Landscapes in Southern Africa, Online, Elluminate (Keynote). My talk, scheduled for one hour, went (with a willing audience) closer to two hours, which was nice, because I was able to develop the topic the way I wanted. After sketching the progression of Web 2.0 tools (from personal publishing to webtops) I outlined (drawing heavily on Konrad Glogowski) how it enables new forms of learning. From this, I outlined some of the theory underlying these new forms, and from this theoretical stance, responded in part to the critics of these new models.

Learning Networks and the Personal Learning Environment
Jun 12, 2006. Invited Seminar, Vienna, Austria (Seminar). On Monday I went to the Centre for Social Innovation in Vienna for some informal chats and this 2.5 hours presentation (Slides, Audio) in the afternoon (what a patient audience!) covering the concept of learning networks and how they tie into the recent discussions on the personal learning environment (PLE).

E-Learning 2.0 - Platform, Not Medium
Jun 09, 2006. Micromedia & e-Learning 2.0: Gaining the Big Picture, Innsbruck, Austria (Lecture). In this talk my intent was to build on the presentations that had already taken place at the conference outlining Web 2.0 tools and methodologies, and to in anticipation of George Siemens show the connection between them and network learning or connectivism.Note that the conference page lists the papers included in the proceedings; mine was not included until the following year (we had a disagreement about length).

The Students Own Education
Jun 05, 2006. Invited Talk, Milton Keynes, UK (Seminar). Invited talk at the Open University. I begin by looking at contrasting views of identity, one where it is acquired by virtue of membership, the other where it is created by the person. Only in the latter case do we truly 'own' our education. This segues into a discussion of e-learning 2.0 and the idea of the personal learning environment. No audio.

The Global University
Jun 05, 2006. Blue Ribbon Panel, Milton Keynes, UK (Panel). No slides, no audio, no description, really, and I can't find anything in Google. But it was a very large event, very formal,  and we talked about the idea of mass universities, future learning technologies, and open resources. At least I have a picture!

How I became (blog) literate and what (blog) literacy meant to me
Jun 02, 2006., London, UK (Keynote). Presentation to an alternative UK blogs conference. The idea was that I would attend the different sessions and then improvise a talk. This was what came out. Quoting Barbara Ganley: "we have to wonder sometimes, whether control is necessary to achieve the desired outcomes, or whether control is the desired outcome." How does blogging change that? 

What do we see when we look through a computer?
May 30, 2006. CAUCE 2006, Toronto, Ontario (Keynote). How does using a computer network learn to change how we see the world? How does this change how we learn and how we teach? And what happens when everyone begins seeing this way?

The Unkeynote
Apr 21, 2006. BCEd Online Annual Conference, Vancouver, British Columbia (Keynote). Instead of the usual keynote address, the three of us turned the talk - and the agenda - over to an unsuspecting audience at the BCEd Online Annual Conference. Here is the audio of the session I recorded. Don't miss D'Arcy Norman's debriefing of the event, including the link to the web-based chat we had running on the big screen during the event (D'Arcy found and installed a nice Ajax chat server for the session, something I will be using again). We used a wiki to record topics (in case the conversation stalled - though we didn't need it). Brian Lamb also has a short item on our preparations for the untalk.

A Conversation With Stephen Downes
Apr 21, 2006. BCEd Online Annual Conference, Vancouver, British Columbia (Seminar). Without really a title or a description - and yet still with a full room - I pretty much had free reign and used the time to talk about some of the things I have been thinking about during my hiatus, and especially about the relevance of learning and the role education should play in empowering, rather than diminishing, learners. It's a bit loose, but these are topics that are important to me, and that will play a greater role in my thinking in the future.

Distributed Learning
Apr 03, 2006. 11th Annual IT Conference, Murfreesboro, Tennessee (Keynote). Quoting Michael Feldstein: "We need a system that is optimized toward slotting in new pieces as they become available, not as an after-thought or an add-on, but as a fundamental characteristic of the system." In this presentation I talk about the tools and systems we could use to accomplish that.

From EduBlogs to the Collective Consciousness
Feb 27, 2006. ASTE 2006, Anchorage, Alaska (Keynote). This presentation begins with an account of the blogging phenomenon and the factors that motivate people to share their lives and thoughts online and appliers that to an understanding of network learning and, ultimately, connectivist network principles.

From EduBlogs to the Collective Consciousness (Director's Cut)
Feb 26, 2006. ASTE 2006, Anchorage, Alaska (Workshop). I'm at the ASTE conference in Anchorage, Alaska, where I conducted an all day seminar yesterday (the "Director's Cut") and a keynote address this morning. For the seminar I created a Jot wiki. Here are the PowerPoint slides from the keynote. I also have audio from the seminar - Part One, Part Two, each about 18 megabytes. And audio from the keynote, about 9 megabytes.

E-Learning 2.0 at the E-Learning Forum
Feb 22, 2006. E-Learning Forum, Online (to California) (Seminar). eLearning 2.0 reflects and results from important business and technology trends that are happening around us, as the Internet is undergoing dramatic change. Stephen has agreed to kick off our meeting and discuss some of the key issues of his article and set the context and stage for the subsequent presenters and for the interactive discussion we will have during the meeting.

Models for Sustainable Open Education Resources
Feb 07, 2006. OECD Expert Meeting in Malmo, Malmo, Sweden (Seminar). This is a presentation of the paper of the same name I wrote for the OECD on sustainability models for OERs. I list the various types of resources to be considered, the various aspects of sustainability, and detail a variety of models, with examples. I end up recommending a community-based sustainability model as being the best long-term option. See also  Photo by Leon Cych.

Learning Networks
Jan 25, 2006. In-House Presentation, Saint John, New Brunswick, Online (Seminar). Overview of the distributed approach to learning networks, including resource repositories, digital rights, learning environments, and social networks, presented to Innovatia at a meeting with them in their offices. No audio.

Grande Yellowhead Seminar
Jan 19, 2006. Invited Workshop, Edson, Alberta (Workshop). Two day seminar in Edson, Alberta. Part 1 - an introductory session; I review blogging tools, have people create blogs, discuss wikis and content management systems, and RSS. Part 2 - Discussion on the role of blogging and similar technologies in learning, how they fit in with current practice; coverage of Flickr and Writely, podcasting and Creative Commons and open licensing. Part 3 - Discussion on the role these technologies can play in the schools, supported with a number of examples (see the Wiki page); discussion on social bookmarking ( and Furl) and social networking, including a look at promoting internet safety for students. Part 4 - I talk about the changing environment, discuss the Cluetrain Manifesto and the disintermediation of power; discussion on the role of learner-centered learning, Connectivism and learning networks; plans for the future at Grande Yellowhead and elsewhere in Alberta. Page of notes written by an attendee.

Learning Networks
Dec 15, 2005. In-House Presentation, Moncton, New Brunswick (Keynote). In-house presentation of the concept. We were pitching it to whomever would listen. Core concepts based around learning as a network phenomenon included the web of user-generated content (eg. Wikipedia), social networks and communities (entails a genuinely portable (and owned)identity, networks of interactions (aggregate, remix, repurpose, feed forward) – syndication, and the personal learning centre.

On Being Radical
Nov 18, 2005. SACE 2005, Regina, Saskatchewan (Keynote). In the first part I outline the major components of an open learning architecture. Then - conjuring memories of people like Tommy Douglas in Saskatchewan - I ask whether it is radical to think of providing access to all. Rob Wall also offers a lengthy blog summary.

Open Learning and the Metauniversity
Nov 14, 2005. Open Source for Education in Europe, Heerlen, Netherlands (Seminar). My talk at the Open Source for Education in Europe, organized by the SIGOSSEE and JOIN projects, in conjunction with the Open University of the Netherlands, describing an overall architecture for learning resource distrivution and learning networks. Stuart Yeates found the talk "disappointing" because of "his utopia predicated first and foremost on a radically different method of distributing resources in education and only then got to the technically interesting bits. He did hit at least one nail on the head---his insistence that we work with learning content editors rather than mere players."

I'm Toasting the Presentation Slides...
Nov 12, 2005. Open Source for Education in Europe, Heerlen, Netherlands (Workshop). ... which is unfortunate because they would have helped. Audio recording of a workshop in which I describe gRSShopper and how it has been developed to support OLDaily and similar initiatives.

E-Learning 2.0
Oct 28, 2005. TESIC, Gander, Newfoundland (Workshop). This workshop covers trends like learner-centered design, connectivism, open resources, and related topics in order to present a comprehensive picture of web-enabled learning and learning networks, compiled under the heading of e-learning 2.0. No audio.

Riding the Wave: Personal Professional Development in an Age of Chaos
Oct 27, 2005. TESIC, Gander, Newfoundland (Keynote). Talk to a group of IT specialists and computer science teachers in Newfoundland. My second effort offering a talk in S5 - view original S5 slides here. It looks at what happens to teaching even in an age when everything changes on a constant basis. So learning isn't adding to what you already know, it means changing what you already know. This is a picture of knowledge as a dynamic network as opposed to (say) a collection of books.

Ruby, Blackboard and the Challenge for Open Source
Oct 24, 2005. Free Software and Open Source Symposium, Toronto, Ontario (Keynote). By most accounts, Blackboard and WebCT are among the most hated pieces of commercial software ever. Yet despite this, the two have captured most of the university learning management software market. When the two companies merged, creating a monolith in educational software, pundits hailed it as an opportunity for open source. What opportunity, though? Despite the hated commercial software, open source alternatives, such as Sakai, Moodle and Bodington still claim only a small market share. We need to recognize that open source software remains, even for those who want to use it, difficult to use and even more difficult to install. We need to recognize that interoperability remains a challenge and that issues such as licensing, patents and digital rights management lurk as hurdles to be faced in the future. And most of all, we need to recognize that open source software, if it seeks merely to emulate commercial software, will always lag behind commercial software. What would a ...

What E-Learning 2.0 Means To You
Sept 14, 2005. Transitions in Advanced Learning, Ottawa, Ontario (Seminar). Begins with three views of learning resources: learning resources as a thing (book, content object, etc); learning resources as events (class, lecture, seminar, meeting; and learning resources as flow (experience?) where the first two models are information-theoretic and medium-based models and the third represents is a shift from the idea of the web as communication (information theory) to the idea of the web as network (or environment… pick your metaphor).

Reaching the Blogosphere
Sept 13, 2005. News vs. Noise Conference, Gatineau, Quebec, Canada (Seminar). Once again, my audio failed me, and so I have only PowerPoint slides of today's talk (I have since discovered that Windows was blocking the audio driver for my sound card, in some insane supposition that it was a virus). The talk covered familiar ground for readers of OLDaily - the rise of the blogosphere, RSS, writing blogs that will be read, distributed representation and principles of successful networks - all in less than a half hour.

Collaboration and Technology
Sept 12, 2005. Alt-C, Manchester, UK (Keynote). Closing remarks at Alt-C. What was the point (I was asked) of being here at this conference? What was the point of coming together? Do we critically reflect on theory, practice, or do we merely reinforce our existing prejudices? What do we take home? These questions are asked in the context of an examination of the benefits (and weaknesses) of collaboration. No audio. Some very useful blog commentaries, one by Derek Morrison, another by Christopher D. Sessums, more (in Dutch) by Marc Dupuis, and some stream of consciousness from Juliette White. 

Collaboration Tools: What's Out There
Aug 09, 2005. Seminars on Academic Computing, Snowmass, Colorado (Panel). Phil Long, Alan Levine and I discuss the full range of collaboration tools, with an emphasis on the cheap, easy and informal: things like wikis, blogs and such. Discussion of implementing blogs in a multi-user environment. Also discussion of how the tools are being evaluated.

Principles of Distributed Representation
Aug 09, 2005. Seminars in Academic Computing, Snowmass, Colorado (Keynote). Learning object metadata will be rewritten. Or maybe bypassed entirely. It's going to be rewritten because it has to be, because as we work with learning object metadata as it is currently incarnated, unless we're working within a large monolithic entity like the U.S. military, learning object metadata will be found to be too rigid, too inflexible, too narrowly defined, to do the sorts of things that we want to do with it.

E-Learning 2.0
Jun 10, 2005. Invited Workshop, Gatineau, Quebec (Workshop). I spent the day at the Canadian Heritage Information Network engaged in a lengthy and free-wheeling discussion of the concepts surrounding E-Learning 2.0 Although the PowerPoint Slides for my presentation today are basically the same as those I used in Edmonton a few months ago, the discussion was much more wide ranging. Audio segments (each about an hour): Part One, Part Two, Part Three.

E-Learning 2.0 (Alberta Cut)
Jun 10, 2005. Interface 2005, Edmonton, Alberta (Keynote). In this presentation I outline the core components of e-learning 2.0 - a learning environment based on conversations and creativity rather than content delivery and testing.

E-Learning 2.0
Jun 03, 2005. CIDER, Online, Elluminate (Lecture). Presentation of the concept of e-learning 2.0, beginning with the idea that learning is based on interaction and conversation rather than transmission and testing. E-learning 2.0, like the model of web 2.0, is based on learner design of and participation in the learning environment.

E-Learning: A Kaleidoscope of Options
Jun 01, 2005. CAPE, Summerside, Prince Edward Island (Seminar). E-Learning: A Kaleidoscope of Options - Part One and E-Learning: A Kaleidoscope of Options - Part Two My talk to the Canadian Association of Police Educators in Summerside, Prince Edward Island. PowerPoint Slides and audio (MP3), part one and part two. Once again, I'm speaking in a large concrete room (funny how things like that come in clusters) so the sound quality is again iffy. (mpeg) By Stephen Downes, Stephen's Web, May 18, 2005

CSTD Panel on the Future of Learning
May 27, 2005. CSTD, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Panel). Panel discussion including myself, Jay Cross, Rob Pearson and Lisa Neal.

How To Be A Good Learner
May 26, 2005. This Is IT, North Bay, Ontario (Keynote). My talk at This Is IT in North Bay. The title is descriptive as I survey three major characteristics of good learning behaviour - generating interactivity, making your learning content usable, and ensuring relevance. The talk was given in an airplane hanger at the local airport, a huge concrete block building with the accoustics of, well, a huge concrete block building. So the sound quality on the audio isn't great, which is too bad.

The Living Arts: The Future of Learning Online
May 25, 2005. Invited Presentation, Guelph, Ontario (Seminar). In this presentation I challenge the idea of online learning as sitting in front of a computer, and instead refer to examples like Mississagua's Living Arts Centre as an example of getting out and learning in the community. Spanish translation of slides: Las Artes Vivas: El Futuro del aprendizaje en línea.

Learning Networks: Theory and Practice
Mar 09, 2005. International Conference on Methods and Technologies for Learning, Palermo, Italy (Lecture). Talk at the opening of the International Conference on Methods and Technologies for Learning at the Palazzo dei Normanni, Palermo, Sicily. Unfortunately rushed, my talk wasn't everything I had hoped, though people were kind enough to say nice things afterward (including one who, after seeing the slides, said it's a talk I should give in full one day). Still, here are the slides and the MP3 of Learning Networks (3.3 megabytes).

Living in a Distributed World
Feb 23, 2005. KnowTIPS First Annual Online Conference, Online, Elluminate (Lecture). The MP3 of my online talk, Living in a Distributed World is now available. In this talk I contrast centralized and distributed approaches to learning technology and outline the distributed approach. The PowerPoint slides are also available, or if you wish, you can view the session directly on Elluminate.

Blogging in Education Panel
Feb 20, 2005. Northern Voice, Vancouver, British Columbia (Panel). I also sat on the Blogging in Education panel: here is the MP3 of Blogging in Education and here is a summary by Nancy White. We have to redefine for ourselves first and foremast what constitutes quality. Being accepted by 2 out or 3 referees who won’t even reveal who they are is not a measurement of quality.  If you write well, if you have something to say, if you put it online for people to read, you will get a wider readership than any journal article would and you will be recognized for it.

Community Blogging
Feb 19, 2005. Northern Voice, Vancouver, British Columbia (Lecture). An analysis of community as it emerges in blogging: how it is formed, how it should reshape the blogosphere, and how it can be implemented (quite easily) technologically. And along the way, deflating a few pet concepts of the blogerati, such as the value of the long tail and the utility of tagging. Better version of the recording.

Blogging and RSS in Learning
Dec 17, 2004. Invited Presentation, Wolfville, Nova Scotia (Lecture). Slides and the audio from my talk at Acadia here in Wolfville (7 megabytes). Similar to my talk of yesterday, but I spent less time on the basics and more time talking about wikis, RSS aggregation and Edu_RSS.

Blogging in Learning
Dec 16, 2004. Invited Presentation, Halifax, Nova Scotia (Lecture). Slides and MP3 audio (10 megabytes or so) from my talk today at Mount Saint Vincent University. The talk itself is a presentation of the use of blogging in learning, blogging technologies and aggregators, and some discussion of RSS. The interesting bit comes after the talk, as audience members remained for almost an hour to continue with questions and comments, including thoughts on the ethics of research and blogging along with my thoughts on emerging trends.

Object Oriented Learning Objects
Nov 26, 2004. L'ingenierie pedagogique a l'heure des TIC, Montreal, Quebec (Panel). I present again the idea of "e-learning as dynamic, unstructured stream of learning resources obtained and organized by learners." In this talk I extend the idea bit by elaborating on the community aspect of learning resources and outlining how the learning objects should be designed in order to facilitate this.

Global Learn Day
Nov 20, 2004. Global Learn Day, online (Lecture). My contribution to Global Learn Day is available as an MP3 audio feed - I talk about the Firefox launch, the emergence of blogging in the Yukon, and the spirit that lies behind all this - the idea that we could provide learning to everyone in the world (please note the sound is bad for three minutes during the introduction, then my talk comes out very clearly).

Blogs, RSS and Cool Stuff
Nov 19, 2004. New Directions in Learning, Whitehorse, Yukon (Workshop). Mr. Downes will participate with Yukon educators and technology professionals in a workshop that will introduce participants to specific technologies that are (or will be) available to Yukon educators, learners and researchers that can change the nature and scope of learning for the future. 

New Directions in Learning
Nov 18, 2004. New Directions in Learning, Whitehorse, Yukon (Keynote). Audio of my talk in WhiteHorse, Yukon. You know you're speaking to the right group when three of them are wearing those black "I'm blogging this" t-shirts. :) Discussion how our understanding of the nature of knowledge shapes our understanding of learning. Learning as experience. The learning network. Abstract: "Stephen Downes will present his perspective of the changes in education and learning enabled by new technologies. The presentation is free and will be held in the Lecture Hall, Yukon College, Whitehorse." Audio: (Part 1) (Part 2)

Open Digital Rights Management
Nov 10, 2004. Maritime Open Source Technologies, Moncton, New Brunswick (Seminar). Maritimes Open Source Technology (Part 2) The Open RuleML Standard for Semantic Web Rule Interchange, Harold Boley NRC-IIT researcher and international lead architect for RuleML; Personal Health Records Application for New Brunswick -“ ongoing advances in creating an electronic patient record system for New Brunswick with Open Source tools and components, Rene Richard and Keith Wilson, researchers NRC-IIT ehealth. (mpeg) By Harold Boley, Rene Richard and Keith Wilson.

Theory of Learning Networks
Nov 10, 2004. Maritime Open Source Technology, Moncton, New Brunswick (Lecture). Maritimes Open Source Technology (Part 1) Introduction - about the E-Learning Research Group and IRAP (Rod Savoie, William Langley), open source and some local success tories (Peter Burtt), Distributed Digital Rights Management (Stephen Downes). My own slides are available. Website. (mpeg) By Rod Savoie, William Langley, Peter Burtt, and Stephen Downes.

Ten Years After
Oct 19, 2004. NAWeb 2004, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Keynote). This is the tenth year of NAWeb, and the last for organizer Rik Hall, who earns the applause and commendations of this list for this work. Hence the title of my talk, a bit of a retrospective on the conference and tribute to Rik Hall - peace, love and happiness - and where e-learning is going in the future

Knowledge and Learning
Oct 11, 2004. Special Sessions, Perth, WA, Australia (Seminar). WestOne Workshop, October 11-12. Topics during these two half-day workshops included knowledge and learning, the new student, personalization, communities of practice, and other issues. The sponsor of my visit to Perth, and the major sponsor of the trip as a whole, is the ACEL-ACE Checking the Pulse conference. The Sponsor of the October 11 1nd 12 talks was WestOne. MP3 Audio Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4 (clipped at end).

The Buntine Oration: Learning Networks
Oct 09, 2004. Checking the Pulse, Perth, Australia (Keynote). We don't present these learning objects, ordered, in a sequence, we present randomly, unordered. We don't present them in classrooms and schools, we present them to the environment, to where students find themselves, in their homes and in their workplaces. We don't present them at all, we contribute them to the conversation, we become part of the conversation.  The slide presentation was severely corrupted; it was mostly images, and autoplayed in the background while I spoke. Full text. MS-Word version. Photo and comment by Dorothy. Part 1, Part 2 of Albert Ip commentary. Learning Networks versus the Behmoth? - commentary by Derek Morrison. The Network Second Layer: RSS Newsmastering - commentary by Robin Good.

Positioning Tasmania as a Leader in ICT Enabled Education and Training
Oct 04, 2004. Invited Seminar, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia (Seminar). Positioning Tasmania as a Leader in ICT Enabled Education and Training, October 4 This full day session was a wide ranging discussion centered around four major themes: the role of government, the role of industry, the role of education, and a wrap up, bringing it all together. MP3 Audio Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4. Full (and excellent) summary by Kirsty Sharp. This visit is sponsored by The Office of Post-Compulsory Education and Training, Department of Education. More information.

ICT Roundtable
Oct 01, 2004. Invited Seminar, Hobart, Tasmania (Seminar). Short outlines of projects by instructional technology leaders in Tasmania, each followed by commentary and discussion. Audio: Part 1, Part 2. Technical Roundtable wiki page. Summary by Janine Bowes. Recodings and comments by Kirsty Sharp - Peter Higgs summary.

Invitated Presentation
Oct 01, 2004. ICT Roundtable, Hobart, Tasmania (Keynote). Short outlines of projects by instructional technology leaders in Tasmania, each followed by commentary and discussion. MP3 Audio Part 1 Part 2  Summary by Janine Bowes, recordings and comments by Kirsty Sharp - Peter Higgs summary, personalization of learning, workplace learning, knowledge Management.

Collaboration Workshop
Sept 29, 2004. Special Session, Adelaide, SA, Australia (Seminar). This workshop explored the need for and methods of collaboration available to TAFE SA staff. It was very unstructured (mostly because I didn't know what the topic was until we started). Awkward. MP3 Audio (15.2M, 2 hours, 7 minutes). Concept map of the discussion, created by Marty Cielens. Summary

The Future of Online Learning and Knowledge Networks
Sept 29, 2004. Special Session, Adelaide, SA, Australia (Lecture). This talk outlines ways in which the 'consensus view' of e-learning technology misunderstands the technoilogical and business models offered by the internet and describes as an alternative the resource profiles picture of metadata and harvesting. MP3 Audio: Part 1, first group, Part 1, second group, Part 2, combined group. Commentary by Albert Ip. Comment by Geroge Siemens. Comment by Martin Terre Blanche. Downes Under - slideshow by Marie Jasinski.

Blogs, Learning Objects and Other Cool Stuff!
Sept 27, 2004. Invited Presentation, Alice Springs, NT, Australia (Seminar). This session introduces and defines blogs and blogging, shows how to create a blog in just a few minutes, gives advice on blog content and format, suggests educational and classroom uses of blogs, defines and outlines blog syndication using RSS, provides practical examples of RSS syndication formats, applies syndicated blog content in course web pages, suggests sources of RSS content, and outlines future directions for the medium.

E-Learning in Easy Pieces
Sept 24, 2004. Invited Lecture, Darwin, NT, Australia (Lecture). When we think of e-learning these days, we tend to think of learning management systems, enterprise systems, and integrated courseware. Large, complex, do-everything pieces. But when we look at the internet technologies that have actually been successful - things like email, web sites, and blogs - we find that what works is exactly the opposite: small pieces, loosely joined. This lecture looks at what's wrong with enterprise e-learning and why the small pieces approach will work better, and will describe recent and innovative work using such technology, including the use of blogs, wikis, and RSS. Stephen Downes Does Darwin, by Terry Lawler, Australian Flexible Learning Framework

Open Education, the Semantic Web and the Personalisation of eLearning
Sept 22, 2004. Invited Session, Cairns, Queensland, Australia (Seminar). For teachers, trainers, administrators and support staff in Post Compulsory Education and Training on open education, the semantic web and the personalisation of eLearning. This talk was given twice, once in Sunshine Coast and once in Cairns. MP3 Audio Part 1 Part 2. I used a web page as my slides.

Knowledge, Learning Objects and The New Student
Sept 22, 2004. Invited Session, Cairns, Queensland, Australia (Seminar). Intended for teachers, administrators and support staff in Primary and Secondary Schools addressing the strategies available to access and use knowledge and learning objects to meet the needs of the new learner. This talk was given twice, once Sunshine Coast and once in Cairns. MP3 Audio: Part 1 Part 2. I used a web page as my slides.

A Dog's Breakfast: Roles and Responsibilities for Managers in the Cyber Era
Sept 22, 2004. Invited Session, Cairns, Queensland, Australia (Seminar). For managers and supervisors from all sectors on the responsibilities and roles of managers in driving elearning. Looks at the nine rules for good technology and adapts them to define good management. This talk was given twice, once in Sunshine Coast and once in Cairns.

Open Education, the Semantic Web and the Personalisation of eLearning
Sept 20, 2004. Invited Session, Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia (Seminar). For teachers, trainers, administrators and support staff in Post Compulsory Education and Training on open education, the semantic web and the personalisation of eLearning. This talk was given twice, once in Sunshine Coast and once in Cairns. MP3 Audio: Part 1 Part 2. I used a web page as my slides.  

Knowledge, Learning Objects and The New Student
Sept 20, 2004. Invited Session, Cairns, Queensland, Australia (Seminar). Intended for teachers, administrators and support staff in Primary and Secondary Schools addressing the strategies available to access and use knowledge and learning objects to meet the needs of the new learner. This talk was given twice, once in Sunshine Coast and once in Cairns. MP3 Audio: Part 1 Part 2. I used a web page as my slides.

A Dog's Breakfast: Roles and Responsibilities for Managers in the Cyber Era
Sept 20, 2004. Invited Session, Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia (Seminar). For managers and supervisors from all sectors on the responsibilities and roles of managers in driving elearning. Looks at the nine rules for good technology and adapts them to define good management. This talk was given twice, once in Sunshine Coast and once in Cairns.

Edging the Techno Frontier
Sept 17, 2004. Invited Roundtable, Canberra, ACT, Australia (Seminar). Round Table for technical staff. This session looks at leading edge technologies to support learning, and the pros and cons of supporting them in educational instutions and considers the promise and the reality of LMS and LCMS, the role of learning objects and operation of LOR, the value of RSS, and options for conferencing tools. I used a web page as my slides. Audio is 27 minutes only and cut-off.

New Students, New Learning
Sept 16, 2004. Invited Lecture, Canberra, ACT, Australia (Lecture). What is quality in e-learning and what do organisations need to do to get it happening? Identifies the major elements of quality we need to aim for and considers some of the practicalities of achieving it. The new student: What will be expected of us? What will the digital generation mean for the schools of the future? Do we need to consider the 'new literacy', adjust our understanding of values and learning, or change the way we deal with diversity? The future is not as far away as we like to think and organisations need to be planning now. MP3 Audio: Part 1 Part 2.

Reusable Media, Social Software and Openness in Education
Sept 04, 2004. Instructional Technology Institute, Logan, Utah (Keynote). Cornerstone talk for me in which I define the difference between open and closed, outline the key elements of open learning and open learning resources, and list the barriers to the use of these posed by commercial media, such as lock-out, lock-in, high-bar, flooding, and legal barriers. I also talk about the way we as an industry are complying with the institution of these barriers and steps we need to take to circumvent them.

Quality Standards: It's All About Teaching and Learning?
Jun 04, 2004. NUTN 2004, Kennebunkport, Maine (Seminar). Outlines an approach to quality standards based on principles of recommender systems, specifically, the idea that quality is based on how individuals similar to the current user rate resources similar to the current resource. The talk additionally outlines a technology that would address mechanisms for describing resource quality in learning systems. Audio appears to be lost.

The Evolving Concept of the Community of Practice
May 29, 2004. Building Distributed Communities of Practice, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan (Seminar). Overview of the concept of the community of practice, some of its defining features, and an outline of the way the concept shifts as it meets a distributed and individual-centered internet. First time recording a talk with my new microphone, so of course I mispronounced Etienne Wenger's name throughout. And now this audio appears to be lost. View also my notes from the event.

Projecting Quality
May 07, 2004. Quality Learning: Making IT Click, Winnipeg, Manitoba (Lecture). This is a presentation of results from the Sifter Organizer project  in Collaboration with Mosaic Technologies, Inc. demonstrating the selection of learning objects based on their metadata and filtering and sorting them according to their rated quality. Using the schemas defined, evaluation data is stored as XML files. These XML files are aggregated alongside learning object metadata. Evaluation data may then be aggregated or interpreted.

Distributed Digital Rights Management: The EduSource Approach to DRM
Apr 24, 2004. First International Workshop, Vienna, Austria (Lecture). Overview of the concept of digital rights management describing aspects of DRM and where it is applied to create a DRM design decision metric. Introduces the concept of the degree of DRM to define a 'middle way' respecting the rights of both producers and users. Describes rights models and shows how these can be employed by resource repositories.  See the full text of the presentation.

Distributed Digital Rights Management
Mar 30, 2004. Learning Object Summit, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Lecture). Overview of the concept of digital rights management describing aspects of DRM and where it is applied to create a DRM design decision metric. Introduces the concept of the degree of DRM to define a 'middle way' respecting the rights of both producers and users. Describes rights models and shows how these can be employed by resource repositories.

Divergence and Collaboration in eduSource
Mar 29, 2004. Learning Object Summit, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Lecture). This is a summary of the organization and management of the eduSource project, a collaboration among six major partners and numerous minor partners to create a pan-Canadian learning object repository. It did not really succeed, and this talk examines the issues and difficulties inherent in this sort of collaboration. Audio was not recorded, but the slides give a good sense of the points of tension.

Emerging Technologies in E-Learning
Mar 15, 2004. Rencontres internationales du multimédia d’apprentissage - International Conference on Educational Media (RIMA-ICEM), Quebec City, Quebec (Seminar). This presentation runs through the concepts of learning objects, learning design, learning object standards and metadata, and then introduces eduSource by means of a discussion of repositories. It then covers RSS syndication and suggests an aggregation model for learning resource discovery and distribution. This leads to the concept of personalization in learning, with a look at emerging social networks. Finally, it covers the concept of learning environments. This was also the conference where I met Seymour Papert, and which formed much of the source material for my Educational Blogging article.  Coverage here and here.

Blogging and RSS in Learning
Jan 27, 2004. Invited Lecture, Online, Elluminate (Seminar). Overview defining what a blog is and highlighting some uses of blogging in education. Description of some blogging and content management systems. Discussion of blog aggregation services and RSS. Overview of how these tools are combined to support and discussion of the idea as the network functioning inherently as the search system.

Distributed Digital Rights Management
Jan 27, 2004. Invited Lecture, Online (Lecture). First overall presentation of the eduSource approach to distributed digital rights management, with presentation of DDRM strength and locale grids as technology selection tools. Describes as DRM principles the concepts of open standards, open network and open marketplace. Overview of rights models and related tools. Diagrams the integration of vendor repositories in a digital resource network.

Issues in Digital Rights Management
Nov 11, 2003. E-learn 2003, Phoenix, Arizona (Panel). Digital Rights Management (DRM) is the management of rights by digital means, specifically; intellectual property rights applied to digital content and services. DRM is a complex and explosive issue involving a both law and technology and is an issue with which the e-learning community must come to grips. In conjunction with a panel session at the E-learn 2003 conference sponsored by the Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education, this paper defines terms and states some of the problems associated with applying DRM in e-learning. See for full text of my talk.

Blogs, Learning Objects, and Other Cool Stuff
Oct 19, 2003. NAWeb 2003, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Workshop). From out of nowhere, it seems, weblogs, content syndication and new technologies such as XML, RSS, SOAP and REST have come to symbolize the next generation of e-learning technologies. Even for seasoned designers and programmers, these new technologies seem to offer nothing more than a new alphabet soup. What do they do? How do they work? Full text.

Questions and Possibilities: The Four-Dimensional Future of Metadata
Sept 20, 2003. Canadian Metadata Forum, Ottawa, Ontario (Lecture). I authored this presentation during the day at the Canadian Metadata Forum, being asked to summarize and represent the overall findings of the conference that day. Here are my notes. This is what I came up with: 1. Resources What is the nature of things? Is a rose, by any other name, still a rose?  2. Descriptions To describe is to perceive, but each of us is alone in our perceptions…  3. Time – that most unreal of dimensions – is the only dimension unchanged in the digital world. 4. Community. Who Am I? Questions of authentication, etc., for data management, but not just that…

Forced Education: Schools of the Future
Aug 21, 2003. TeLearning Conference, Videoconferenced to Hobart, Australia (Keynote). I gave this talk in a darkened government building downtown by videoconference to Hobart. It was not without technical difficulties, but we pulled it off. I was asked to speak on the drivers affecting education today, and the resulting school of the future. I introduced my 'three laws' of drivers (Second Law: For every driver, there is an equal and opposite backseat driver). Overall, I concluded that Students will begin in simulated environments, but as these environments mature, they will become more real, seamlessly transitioning into reality. Brochure.

Coping With Digital Rights Management
Jun 12, 2003. eduSource Industry Forum, Moncton, New Brunswick (Seminar). I identify a set of key issues in DRM, including ensuring rights holders get a return, fair use and openness, freedom of expression, etc. then describe a set of principles governing our approach to DRM: open marketplace, multiple distribution models, multiple descriptions, simplicity, and others. The talk concludes by describing the eduSource DRM model.

Tomorrow's Online Teachers
Jun 11, 2003. Invited Presentation, Online, Groove, to Sydney, Australia (Seminar). I look at the promise of technology seen through the lens of my 1998 paper, The Future of Online Learning, talk a bit about how we've drifted, and describe the role of the teacher in the learning environment that will emerge once we're back on track. My thanks to Greg Webb for the opportunity.

Learning Objects in a Wider Context
Jun 09, 2003. CADE 2003, St. John's, Newfoundland (Seminar). I argue that the traditional approach to using learning objects - stringing them together into lessons and courses - is misguided because it is a misuse of new media. I present this argument by showing that new media should be regarded as a new language, with its own semantics and grammar, that informs how we should use the 'words' (learning objects) in that language. Image: me talking with Scott Leslie. Proposal.

DLORN: Distributed Learning Object Repository Network
Apr 29, 2003. Open Education: Moving From Concept to Reality, Online (Seminar). Outline of the intent and design of the distributed learning object repository network (DLORN). DLORN? is a system that allows content producers to distribute their learning resources, a mechanism that enables the subject specific aggregation of learning resources from many sources, and means to allow course authors to locate and use resources from many sources. Speaking notes.

Coping With Digital Rights Management
Mar 24, 2003. eduSource Industry Forum, Toronto, Canada (Lecture). Slides from my presentation on digital rights at the eduSource Industry Forum last week in Toronto. In that presentation I went into an interesting digression on the nature of learning objects. Here was my argument in a nutshell (printed here because it doesn't exist like this elsewhere). Yes, the reference to a certain prop is real. My main point is that there is no reason to restrict a priori what counts as a learning object. Yes, a paper tissue is an extreme example. But: * whether something counts as a learning object depends on whether it can be used to teach or learn, and this can only be determined by its use, not by its nature * people will want to use a wide variety of objects, including even (in at least one case) a used tissue, in order to teach or learn * no good will come, therefore, of limiting a priori what objects will count as learning objects and what objects will not.

E-Learning Decisions: Modes, Models and Strategies
Feb 25, 2003. Government On-Line Conference, Ottawa, Canada (Keynote). Description of various types of e-learning, overview of implementation strategies for e-learning in government enterprises. Recommends a Participaction of learning where we promote mental fitness in Canadians using public service learning as a role model. Create incentives – tax breaks, performance bonuses – for evidence of learning and extend opportunities into other areas, for example, learning about Canadian government.

No, Really, This is What We Want
Feb 20, 2003. IMS Open Technical Forum, Vancouver, Canada (Keynote). Keynote speech at the IMS Open Technical Forum, Vancouver, British Columbia, February 20, 2003. A look at the disconnect between what IMS is producing what what people in e-learning are really looking for. I advised IMS to stop redrafting standards over and over again and to concentrate on actual working implementations using the most simple specifications possible, something RSS already does.

One Standard for All: Why We Don't Want It, Why We Don't Need It
Jan 17, 2003. Guest Lecture, Edmonton, Canada (Lecture). Invited presentation to staff at Athabasca University. Discussion of the idea of a single educational metadata and criticism from the argument that standards will need to be contextually sensitive.

An Introduction to RSS for Educational Designers
Dec 03, 2002. Atlantic Regional Meeting, Moncton, Canada (Seminar). Presentation of information previously presented at NAWeb. Outlines the idea of deploying syndication networks, like RSS, to aggregate and distribute learning materials. Discussion paper.

Learning Object Repositories in Canada
Nov 20, 2002. CADE Wise and Witty Weekday, Teleconference (Keynote). The purpose of this session is to describe the architecture being recommended to eduSource Canada. The premise of the distributed learning object repository network (DLORN) is to create an open marketplace in Canada for learning opportunities online. Using a common set of protocols and a basic set of open source applications, any learning content provider may host a learning object repository and distribute and market learning materials through the network. This creates the widest set of opportunities for readers and purchasers of online learning content.

Web Services and Semantic Web for Next Generation of Learning Repositories and Content Management Systems
Nov 18, 2002. Advanced Networks Workshop, Montreal, Canada (Lecture). Introduces the eduSource project to CANARIE partners. Outlines the difficulties with the silo model of learning resource repositories, then describes the structure of eduSource and how it will create linkages between repositories to promote an open marketplace and resource sharing.

Design and Reusability of Learning Objects in an Academic Context: A New Economy of Education?
Nov 12, 2002. eLearning: una sfida per l'universita, Milan, Italy (Lecture). Learning objects are small digital materials that can be reused in numerous different online courses. This talk is aimed at explaining the concepts and processes that are part and parcel of the idea of the reusability of learning objects. After introducing the idea of learning objects by examining the patterns and reasons for their use, we will be presented with a survey of major initiatives, such as SCORM, AICC and IEEE-LOM, with the aim of creating a model structure for the use of learning objects. Through an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of these projects, the speaker concludes with some perspectives on the future of learning objects and developments that are needed to create an authentic learning objects economy. The RAM audio no longer seems to be available. Text.

The Role of Quality in e-Learning: From "Page-Turners" to Motivating and Engaging Online Courses
Oct 28, 2002. TExpo 2002, Fredericton, Canada (Lecture). Online learning fails when we use new technology to do old things – page turning, for example, works wonderfully in books, miserably online. In a similar manner, we will find that e-government fails when we use new technology to do old things – online voting and online town halls, for example, are good ideas that may turn out very badly. The key to success in both e-learning and e-government hinges on the idea of participation. This involves changing learners from passive consumers of learning to active producers of learning. And in e-government, this involves changing citizens from passive consumers of governance to active producers of governance.

The Learning Object Economy
Oct 20, 2002. NAWeb 2002, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Workshop). The intent of this workshop is to provide a comprehensive overview of learning objects and related topics for the non-technical reader. Common arguments identifying a need for learning objects are described. The development of learning objects is placed into a theoretical context by identifying the underlying concepts in computer science, standards initiatives and distance learning theory from which they evolved. Learning objects are then looked at from a practical point of view. Tools and techniques for creating learning objects are described. Finally, the learning object economy as a whole is developed. This is the system of learning object repositories, distribution systems and rights management. Document. Also, my blog from the conference.

Syndicated Learning
Aug 13, 2002. Distance Teaching and Learning Conference, Madison,United States (Workshop). Online courses do not have to be confined within the pages of a remote Web site or course space. With e-mail newsletters and similar ‘soft push’ technologies, the reach of an online course can be extended beyond the bounds of the course itself and become a part of a learner’s day-to-day activities. The presenter will introduce tools such as RSS and Javascript feeds for creating syndicated learning. The theory of syndicated educational content creation and design principles will also be discussed. Note: zero  attendees for this session. Document.

Elements of a Distributed Learning Object Repository
May 31, 2002. AMTEC 2002, Regina, Canada (Lecture). I describe the Learning Object Browser, which may be a hosted website, but is more likely to be a stand-alone application specific to your internet access device. Most importantly, it is yours, you configure it, you establish the options. Functions of the LOB: find learning opportunities (note that I did not say courses, content or learning objects); retrieve specific learning instances (which may be courses, content, objects, applications, interactions, testing, more…); play learning instances either directly or via a nearby device.

The Learning Web
May 29, 2002. AMTEC 2002, Regina, Saskatchewan (Keynote). The existing education system is based on the denial of access to knowledge, which creates today a key crisis for education, where people will simply bypass it for more effective methods. These will be enabled by a distributed learning network, based on the model of the semantic web, where learning resources can be freely shared. They will be accessed by a 'learning object browser' which individuals will be able to use to structure their own education. Proposal.

Distance Learning and the Daily News
May 27, 2002. CADE 2002, Calgary, Canada (Lecture). Discussion of development and design of OLDaily, my daily newsletter devoted to the subject of online learning. Outlines some of the major influences, describes previous experience in online email newsletters, and outlines major content, design and delivery issues.

Learning Objects, Learning Repositories and Future Trends in eLearning
May 15, 2002. E-learning: Let's Talk About It conference, Gatineau, Canada (Keynote). Comparison between the development of the World Wide Web in 1994 and the development of a distributed web based learning object repository network in 2002.

Toward a Distributed Learning Object Repository Network
May 02, 2002. LearnTec, Miramichi, Canada (Keynote). Quick overview of learning objects and description of the framework of a learning object repository network. Includes a description and discussion of the proposed pan Canadian learning object repositories initiative.

A World of Opportunity: E-Learning and Atlantic Canada
Mar 20, 2002. Invited Lecture, Fredericton, Canada (Lecture). In a series of stories and lessons, this talk describes different ways to approach online learning, one being based on a barge centralized system, and the other - essential for small regions like New Brunswick - based on a distributed and decentralized model.

Learner Centered by Practice: Applying What We Know About Learning and Cognition in Designing for the Online Environment
Jan 28, 2002. NLII Annual Meeting, San Diego, USA (Panel). Panelists provided an overview of, and shared current thinking around, four key issues related to technology-assisted learning. What do we know about learning and cognition that should be applied to the online environment? Using these principles, what are some of the most effective design, teaching and learning strategies that have been explored in professional, continuous, and corporate learning, as well as higher education? In what ways do they contribute to or change our understanding of learner centeredness? How can we use existing technologies to design effective teaching and learning experiences? What are the indicators that next-generation technologies will further support these goals? Follow-up article.

Online Learning: From Virtual to Reality
Oct 15, 2001. Net*Working, Brisbane,Australia (Keynote). In this presentation I advance the idea that online learning enables education to become more real by moving it from the abstract environment of the classroom into people's homes and workplaces. I actually presented this four times, to four smaller groups, as a 'distributed keynote'. Note that the conference website is long since gone and was not archived.

The Learning Marketplace
Oct 08, 2001. Invited Seminar, Sydney, Australia (Seminar). Discussion of why we want learning marketplaces, a look at a number of existing marketplaces (such as MERLOT, XANEDU) then a detailed examination of the mechanisms necessary in order to make them succeed. This part includes background about the semantic web and learning objects.  Also includes a description of my favourite 'fishing rod that teaches you' example.

Virtual Community Real People
Oct 08, 2001. LearnScope, online (Seminar). This presentation describes the concept of the learning marketplace, then looks at the underlying technologies supporting it: resource descriptions, learning objects and learning content management systems. Supporting document.

Online Learning Communities
May 15, 2001. Invited Workshop, Roanoke, Virginia (Keynote). No digital record of this event exists, and the date is an approximation, but I flew to Virginia West Community College in Roanoke to give a full-day workshop on learning communities. I wasn't really prepared, and then surprised to be in a large auditorium with an audience of only ten people. It was very odd, and not a very good workshop. But we visited a winery and I got to see Roanoke.

Designing For A Viable Online Professional Development Community
Apr 25, 2001. AusWeb01, Coff's Harbour, Australia (Poster). This poster session will give conference delegates a chance to understand the conceptual framework for building the LearnScope Virtual Learning Community and how this framework has been translated into practice. A visual presentation combined with a chance to talk with Stephen Downes and the National LearnScope Team will assist in understanding the concept of building an online community. My one and only poster presentation. I also worked with some friends to create a video - the hands-on part of the conference - which is now long lost.

Building a Learning Community
Apr 18, 2001. TAFE Frontiers, Melbourne, Australia (Lecture). Discusses not only the essential elements of an online learning community but also what it takes to make an online community work.

Understanding Online Learning
Feb 22, 2001. Invited Lecture, Melbourne, Australia (Lecture). This presentation covers the basic structure of an online course and provides a number of examples. Topics include the advantages and disadvantages of online learning, elements of online learning, what works, what doesn?t, the future of online learning.

Knowledge Management
Jan 15, 2001. Invited Presentation, Vancouver, British Columbia (Workshop). The date of this event is a bit of a guess, and there are no digital resources for it (I have some printed materials somewhere in my files). Basically I did three workshops for them, all loosely arranged around the these of knowledge management. Fifteen years later, I still have (and wear) the blue knit shirt I was given with the Justice Institute of BC logo on it.

Distance Education: The Dream
Nov 08, 2000. Net*Working 2000, online (Panel). Nobody would imagine a world mired in 1990s technology - would they? Scrollbars, mouse clicks - we may as well say that the future of the telephone was limited to rotary dials or unhelpful operators. Or that the future of books was limited to those large leather-bound volumes you had to read in dust-filled monasteries. We have unlimited wireless bandwidth, multi-layered simulations, full voice access and control - why would we tie ourselves to desktops? Full text of presentation. (Still looking for the missing audio file).

Content Syndication and Online Learning
Oct 16, 2000. NAWeb 2000, Fredericton, Canada (Lecture). This paper divides into two parts. In the first part it defines and describes the RSS (Rich Site Summary) format and its emerging use as a format for content syndication by news and media organizations on the world wide web. Through the use of working models and demonstrations, the development, display and distribution of content modules via RSS will be discussed. In the second part, the theories and practice employed by news and media organizations are applied to online learning. Using MuniMall, an online learning community developed by the author, as an example, the method of integrating syndicated content with online courses and learning materials will be described and illustrated. Full paper.

Exploring New Directions in Online Learning
Oct 14, 2000. NAWeb, Fredericton, Canada (Workshop). This full day preconference session is a comprehensive overview of trends in online learning. A large set of notes, this presentation is almost like a long paper. Major topics include online learning communities, learning objects and knowledge management. Full paper. Presentation web site.

MuniMall: A Review
Oct 06, 2000. Invited Lecture, Edmonton, Canada (Lecture). Overview of the MuniMall project (MuniMall is an online learning, information and resources community for the municipal sector in Alberta. Describes original project plan, changes to the concept, research and additional work.

Aspects of Smart Communities
Jun 26, 2000. Municipal Refresher Course, Edmonton, Canada (Lecture). Description of the concept of a smart community (that is, a city or town that uses information technology to support governance and services) and discussion about how to implement new technology in an overall community framework.

Learning Objects
May 05, 2000. Leaders in Learning, Edmonton, Canada (Lecture). Presentation which later became my Learning Objects paper on the theory and practice of reusable digital learning materials. Outlines the major arguments in favour of learning objects, describes their construction and the technical infrastructure that supports them, and then describes how they are used in a distributed learning environment. I actually gave this presentation twice, once to an internal audience (May 5) and then to the conference audience (May 8).

The New Knowledge Economy
Mar 20, 2000. Invited Lecture, Edmonton, Alberta (Lecture). Speaks to the effects of the Internet-based information communications technologies on society, commerce and governance. The presentation highlights the transformational consequences and prospects of information and communications technologies with special attention to local government and governance. Full document.

Essentials of Knowledge Management
Mar 15, 2000. Invited Lecture, Edmonton, Alberta (Seminar). Presentation of the essentials of knowledge management, beginning with definitions and approaches from the literature, then describing types of knowledge and approaches to tacit knowledge, and then an overview of knowledge management technologies and infrastructure.

Creating an Online Learning Community
Nov 25, 1999. Virtual Schools Symposium, Edmonton, Alberta (Seminar). An Online Learning Community is the convergence of online learning and online communities. It’s not a 'community' label slapped onto just any online course and it’s not a 'learning' label slapped onto just any online community. I've discovered that the collaboration that occurs in such classroom communities is necessary for the process that others have called shared cognition.

On-Line Learning: The New Dynamism of Distance Education
Nov 16, 1998. ACCC 1998, Winnipeg, Manitoba (Seminar). I was invited to demonstrate online chat to a roomful of executives from ACCC. So as I presented the talk we connected back to Assiniboine Community College and had the students take part in the presentation. HTML page. Document.

The Future of Online Learning
Oct 06, 1998. NAWeb 98, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Seminar). Today, and for the last century, education has been practised in segregated buildings by carefully regimented and standardized classes of students led and instructed by teachers working essentially alone. In ten years, this model will be seen in many quarters to be obsolete. Web site.

Practical Issues in Getting Your Course On-line
Oct 03, 1998. NAWeb98, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Keynote). This session explores what we want to accomplish in on-line education, then looks at the design, platform and delivery models needed to meet those objectives. The session is supported with web-based resources. In addition, space is provided for comment and discussion before and after the session.

Web-Based Courses: The Assiniboine Model
Oct 07, 1997. NAWeb97, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Seminar). This presentation describes the model used at Assiniboine Community College for the construction and delivery of web-based courses. Topics covered will include RIGS (Registration Information Gathering System), Course Modules, Static and Dynamic Content, Instructor-Student Interaction, on-line testing and evaluation, and the Triad delivery model. Proposal. Full paper.

Getting Your Course On-line
Oct 05, 1997. NAWeb97, Fredericton, New Brunswick (Workshop). This session explores what we want to accomplish in on-line education, then looks at the design, platform and delivery models needed to meet those objectives. The session is supported with web-based resources. In addition, space is provided for comment and discussion before and after the session.  

How to Build a (Dynamic) Web-Based Course
Feb 21, 1997. Invited Presentation, Edmonton, Alberta and Fort McMurray, Alberta (Workshop). The purpose of this session is to introduce participants to the nature and process of creating a web-based course. After the session, participants should be able to list the major components of a web-based course and the technologies used to support them, criticize examples of web-based courses, list the roles involved in we-based course development and identify their own place among them, and follow the process of web-based course development in order to produce their own web-based course. The presentation built in HTML intended to demonstrate through example how to build a web based course. It runs through an introduction before allowing users to view the contents page.

Effective Interaction and Communication with Web Courses
Nov 11, 1996. World Wide Web Course Development and Delivery, online, to Maryland (Keynote). To my way of thinking, a paper is a lecture in print. The direction of communication is - like the lecture - one way, flowing from the speaker or writer to the audience. So instead I created a web site for the presentation basically structured as an online course, but didn't show contents until you read the introduction.  If you want to skip the introduction and go straight to the contents, go here. Discussion here.

On-Line Conferencing
May 06, 1996. Distance education & technology: Future visions, Second annual professional development workshop, Maryland, Online (Lecture). Many people consider on-line conferencing to be frivolous and wasteful of system resources. This has had in my mind profound consequences in the nature and shape of on-line conferencing today, beginning with the fact that its use must be justified over and over. Full article.  See also:

On-Line Teaching and Learning
Jan 29, 1996. CADE Wise and Witty Wednesdays, OPnline, via web, listserv, and MUD (Keynote). The purpose of this seminar is to introduce you to the potential of interactive online delivery of course materials over the internet. The seminar is supported by a list server and these web pages. An interactive session is scheduled for January 29 on the Painted Porch MAUD. Archives are online.

The Painted Porch MAUD, or, Why MUDs are so much better than MOOs
Jun 01, 1995. Distance Education Conference, Online (MOO) (Seminar). Presentation to MOO-based Diversity University on the topic of the academic MUD created by Jeff McLaughlin and myself. In it, I argue that the MUD format is more user-friendly, and that the need to learn how to create objects in a MOO detracts from the user experience.

In Defense of Meaning Holism
Jun 16, 1994. Canadian Philosophical Association National Conference, Calgary, Alberta (Lecture). The idea of meaning holism is that the meaning of a word is not defined in terms of the word by itself (for example, by what it refers to or what it represents) but rather in defined in part by its relation to the other words in the language. Paper exists, but has not been digitized.

Critical Thinking in the Classroom
Feb 01, 1994. Instructors' Conference, Grande Prairie, Alberta (Lecture). In this presentation I outlined the essential elements of critical thinking and describe how they can be - and should be - applied in the classroom context. No slides, but I wrote a paper - view here.

In Defense of Meaning Holism
Nov 15, 1992. Western Canada Philosophy Association Annual Conference, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan (Lecture). The idea of meaning holism is that the meaning of a word is not defined in terms of the word by itself (for example, by what it refers to or what it represents) but rather in defined in part by its relation to the other words in the language. Paper exists, but has not been digitized.

The Problem of Perceptual Error
Mar 15, 1992. 5th Annual Canadian Graduate Students' Conference in Philosophy, Toronto, Ontario (Lecture). In this talk I address the dilemma empiricists face when considering the fact that the senses may be wrong. Paper exists but is not digitized.

Comment on David Martens (Mount Royal College), First-Person Attitudes and Intentional Action
May 15, 1991. All-Alberta Philosophy Conference, Lake Louise, Alberta (Lecture). I wrote this presentation on five table mats (in pretty small print) in the Post Hotel in Lake Louise.

Mar 15, 1991. 4th Annual Canadian Graduate Students' Conference in Philosophy, Edmonton, Alberta (Lecture). Foundationalism is the thesis that knowledge is underpinned by some self-evident or irrefutable propositions, such as the truths of logic or sense-data. In this talk I consider some arguments against foundationalism.

Comment on Susan-Judith Hoffman, Post-Foundationalism: An Alternative to the Debate
Mar 15, 1991. 4th Annual Canadian Graduate Students' Conference in Philosophy, Edmonton, Alberta (Lecture). Hoffman presented an argument based on phenomenology, hypothesizing a direct connection between subject and object, which I objected to.

Relevant Similarity
Nov 15, 1990. Philosophy Workshop, Edmonton, Alberta (Lecture). This was an in-house presentation of a core element of a lot of my later work. The thesis of relevant similarity is that inference is made through metaphor and association, not logic and deduction. The associationism mechanisms better explain how children and animals draw inferences without language, and are based in the work of Hume and Mill. See post.

Self Interest and Self Government
Nov 11, 1989. 3rd Annual Canadian Graduate Students' Conference in Philosophy, St. John's, Newfoundland (Lecture). This talk traces the progression of the companion theses of self-interest and self-government through the philosophies of Locke, Rousseau and Mill. Very often the depiction of self-interest, which is a negative trait, is misrepresentative of self-government, which is a positive trait. The paper was accepted but I couldn't make the trip, and it was read for me.

Evidence and Theory Confirmation
Oct 11, 1989. Western Canada Philosophical Association, Calgary, Alberta (Lecture). The problem of induction is the well-known proposition that evidence is insufficient to confirm theories, based on the idea that theories are underdetermined by the evidence. This paper finds the problem to be found in the logicist method of theory confirmation rather than in the paucity of the evidence.

Moore and Wittgenstein on Scepticism
Oct 01, 1989. Philosophy Workshop, Edmonton, Alberta (Lecture). Moore says "Here is a hand" is a proposition that needs no further demonstration. Wittgenstein asks what it is that would make us certain about this proposition, and suggests that it is a "way of life".

Resemblance and Mental Imagery
Nov 01, 1988. 2nd Annual Canadian Graduate Students' Conference in Philosophy, Hamilton, Ontario (Lecture). This paper addresses the debate between Pylyshyn and Kosslyn on the nature of mental imagery, arguing against the cognitivist perspective offered by the former.

A Zen Critique of Transcendental Phenomenology
Oct 01, 1988. Philosophy Workshop, Edmonton, Alberta (Lecture). Had fun with this one, comparing the non-objectivism of Zen with the similar stance in phenomenology. Paper exists, but hasn't been digitized.

Humanism and the Copernican Revolution
Mar 01, 1988. University of Alberta Graduate Research Symposium, Edmonton, Alberta (Lecture). Giving the presentation in the Back Room at the Power Plant.

Models and Modality
Nov 01, 1987. 1st Annual Canadian Graduate Students' Conference in Philosophy, Guelph, Ontario (Lecture). This talk was based on my Masters thesis. I argue that inferences based on models should not be substituted for more direct forms of perceptual knowledge; the model is not reality. Paper exists but has not been digitized.

Fix later: catdetails!~interview;

Detail of the Longshan Temple, Taipei, Taiwan

Stephen Downes
Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada


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