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ALT Spring Conference

I’m in Leiden at ALT Spring Conference – it’s a very nice mix of people talking about learning technologies and (a bit suprisingly) the interesting issues (e.g. games, communities, social software, informal learning) are well covered. Below are some (patchy) notes…

Prof Robert-Jan Simons, “Are our students changing and what does that mean for ICT in education?”

  • Carl Rohde, 2004 (trend-watcher; company of himself, a laptop and 200 people around the world, looking at children between 6 and 12 and 12 and 18; not published, for big corporate customers)
    • Game generation – interactivity!
    • Search generation
    • Extended home (=your home is where your friends are)
    • Lived experience – searching for authentic experiences
    • Respect my authority
  • ICT changing?
    • Mobile computing: Connectivity and sharing, mobile learning
    • Digital information mining: Visual, textual and human information + judgement of quality
    • Digital empowerment: Tools expand intelligence + testing; students become more independent
    • Multi-media rendering: Authencity +outside world
    • World-wide communication: Weblog, podcast, vidcast, wiki, etc.
    • ICT as commodity: Everybody involved; expectations of students; beating the system
  • Virtual action learning system (find example!)
  • Learners vs. staff (D.Oblinger)
    • Multitasking | One thing at a time
    • Audio-visual | Textual
    • Random access | Linear, logical, sequential
    • Interactive and networks | Independent and individual
    • Commitment | Discipline
    • Spontaneousely | Deliberately
  • Need more research…

Scott Wilson ‘Web 2.0 and the personal learning experience of the net generation’ (presentation and podcast). Also – The PLE Blog.

Good talk with an overview of relevant trends (do not agree 100% 😉 and an overview on personal learning experience/environment. Bits and pieces:

  • “participation overload”
  • when students describe what do they want from e-portfolio it looks like an online dating system
  • PLE:
    • Multiple-context learning
    • Formal and informal networks
    • Role-switching
    • Asymmetric spaces
    • Self-organisation
    • Integrated identity
  • Theory – Scott promised to add references in his blog
  • Personal vs. personalised technology
  • How do we construct a set of tools as an individual?

Prof Angela McFarlane, “Playing to learn – learning to play”

  • Fun production sites (forthcoming book chapter)
    • Poetry – emotional experiences comparable too books
    • Drawing – tutoring and learning from each other
    • Novels – reader feedback and encouragement (+ Robison, 2004 on constructive criticism and collaboration between writers and audience at cardcaptor.com)
  • It’s rather hidden cultural practices if you are not an insider. Since there are no physical artifacts… Now visible creative activities.
    • Temptation to generalise (everyone is doing it)
    • E.g. parents and teahers are unaware of those activities
    • Those activities are not acknowledged in formal learning life.
  • “I’d kill to have my students reading each others work as in fun production sites” and “I’ve never got some many comments on something I’ve written. Not in my face.”. Why it doesn’t work:
    • How far institutional pressures are there? Formal organisational structures that “distort the magnetic field”
    • Lack of authenticity?
    • Assessment – experience of collaboration as cheating. Not only education systems, but an understanding of knowledge is……we do not sufficiently privilege the act of production is part of learning, once we do it it’s too late… to produce something personal… How to modify the modes of assessment to fit???
    • Granularity of assessment – lots of material, not enough time to cover it – always summative evaluation of half-baked products

Archived version of this entry is available at http://blog.mathemagenic.com/2006/04/06.html#a1755; comments are here.

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