Thanks for sharing from Ken. I may have enough of “forum” now, so better to spend time researching & blogging.
I notice a trend in the MOOC in that many “experts” and knowledgeable others are moving away from forum, for reasons that have been shared by many in their postings – with George and Stephen in particular, where reflective learning could be perceived as more valuable, especially when they are using the blogs. I do think this trend is obvious for many scholars and academic experts now, and that may impact on the use LMS and online Moodle forum in educational institutions, especially when novice & experts are both staying away from the LMS after a brief stay……
So, what might be the reasons for people sharing in the forum at the start?
Here is my experience & findings from previous research:
The reasons why people like to use the forum include:
(a) sharing and filtering of ideas, artifacts and having debates in forum (discourse)
(b) having a central place for discussion, and an aggregation of ideas, artifacts
(c) fostering of group formation and collaborative learning through inquiry
(d) lurking (legitimate peripheral learning) or self-directed learning
(e) understanding of other learners’ views and perspectives through posting of questions or responses
(f) developing relationship with others through engagement, interaction and communication
There are however, many barriers that have hindered the forum discussion
So, why are people staying away from the forum in PLENK? Would these include?
(a) perceived power and control amongst participants. Would this be perceived as an arena for “Socratic questioning”?
(b) strong or cynical (perceived negative) views, posts, comments or responses that may be perceived by participants. Would this lead to uncomfortable feelings for others to respond?
(c) language barriers amongst participants
(d) topics or posts not relevant to participants interests
(e) overwhelming information and difficulties in comprehending the discussion threads, which could cause the “forum fatigue syndrome”
(f) a loss of interests in the discussion
(g) participants perception of discussion being a very serious academic discourse
(h) lack of fun
(i) What is in it for me (WIIIFM) in the discussion, debates or discourse
And the list goes on….
You name it…..
The above are just my re-collection of some of the past experiences in Forum discussions (including social networking, and MOOC).
Does it mean that PLE/N is now winning over LMS in this round of PLENK? I think many PLENKERS are now drivers on the PLENK….
How about your experiences and views?