Final e-fest event: Conversation on Learning Communities (Eva and John)

= Finished my final workshop here this morning. Whew. Tried a new structure, which I found very very relaxing:

  1. Needed to get the learning theory down to the basics for CoP thinking.
    Used several mini presentations just like some of the Youtube videos: images to support a long quote. I packaged all the educational theory (Situated Learning and “The map is not the territory
  2. I worked through some notes – which covered off the main points.
  3. Then I went through the results of a few small group activities . .
  4. Jotted down notes on a flip chart. Tidied these up later (20 minutes) and digital images will appear online soon. All the themes that appeared were in my notes, except these:
    1. Lurkers. (How could I miss this?)
    2. Values, community ‘rules’/charters
    3. Plus . . .

= Then some time in a sessions with Eva Vass: The intertwining of cognitive, social and affective dimensions of shared knowledge building in online collaboration.

We suggest that cognitive processes involved in shared knowledge building are inextricably interwoven with the development of a social, collaborative community of enquiry. Also, we argue that the affective and cognitive dimensions of online presence are closely linked, and messages with affective content can be integral to the cyclical process of practical inquiry. The aim of the proposed discussion session is to explore these issues further.

= Education in an Electronic Era: Richness, Reach, and the Emergence of New Learning Communities: Dave Hornblow (TOPNZ)

Previously: Richness or Reach
Now can do both.

This term comes from the work of Van Weigol.
The Trade-Off Between Richness and Reach

  1. Richness is quality, reach is the number of people who can participate. The Internet “blows up” this trade-off. Consider—twenty times more books than the largest bookstore, while still retaining some of the personalized service of a small bookstore. Or look at Dell’s ability to build thousands of personalized computers using only eight days’ worth of inventory.
  2. College and universities, unfortunately, have been focusing almost exclusively on the “reach” side of the equation both initially with huge lecture classes and now through distance education. They are vulnerable to commercial firms offering richer courses at lower prices.
  3. In the past, colleges and universities have fended off such “raiders” by exercising their monopoly on accreditation and their ability to deny transfer credit. They are losing both.

More opportunities for real world projects.
Lave (1988) redefined learning in terms of relationships amongst persons-acting, activities and contexts.
Lave, J. (1988). Cognition in practice: Mind, mathematics and culture in everyday life. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

I diverged a little at this stage. Thank goodness for Wireless!!

Here is a story I have never heard, from the book I had never consciously looked at:

Lave provides numerous examples of learning as a situated phenomenon. A classic example involves members of a Weight Watchers program problem-solving to determine appropriate food servings. As Lave (1988) describes: “Dieters were asked to prepare their lunch to meet specifications laid out by the observer. In this case, they were to fix a serving of cottage cheese, supposing that the amount allotted for the meal was three-quarters of the two-thirds cup the program allowed. The problem solver began the task muttering that he had taken a calculus course in college. Then after a pause he suddenly announced that he had ‘got it!’ He filled a measuring cup two-thirds full of cottage cheese, dumped it out on a cutting board, patted it into a circle, marked a cross on it, scooped away one quadrant, and served the rest” (p. 165).

This example well illustrates how individuals frequently use cues and tools from the environment (the wording of a problem, three-quarters of two-thirds; the cutting board and cup) to create artifacts (the patty of cottage cheese) in order to solve puzzles encountered in daily living much more often than by directly calling on formally-learned knowledge and skills.

As Lave (1988) observed, at no time did the Weight Watcher check his procedure against a paper and pencil algorithm [3/4 x 2/3 = 1/2]. Instead, problem, setting, and enactment were the means by which checking took place (p. 165)”

Flogged from a web page with some audio.

More diversions. Dave Hornblow is a fan of Bryan Van Weigol (‘why-gol’) Deep learning for a digital age: Technology’s untapped potential to enrich higher education. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass (2002)

I was interested (disappointed??) to see this comment:

While distance education has improved educational reach, it so far has failed to do much in the way of “bringing depth and dimensionality” to learning. It also largely lacks passion—the ability to make you fall in love with a subject.

But later on he says:

Constructivism involves healthy doses of play.

What a wonderful image!!

Plus Embedded Assessment

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