He quoted Stephen’s comment here:
I think it must be linked to Downes’ articulation of the connectivist attitude towards the learner as expressed here (in about comment 11 in this thread):
I agree, it “does not address the learner’s stated needs/wants.” And when you ask “How is this new?” the answer is that it rejects the implied contract to “address the learner’s stated needs/wants” that other approaches endorse.
Is connectivism addressing the learner’s stated needs/wants? Based on a learning theory approach, Connectivism aims to explain how and why learning occurs in a networked learning environment, within oneself and at the social level. Are there any implied contracts here? May be that’s why I mentioned that learning is relating back to the learner, in how and what he/she perceive learning whilst making learning decision. Would educators be involved in the learning? As shared in my previous post here, there may or may not be the presence of “educators” in the learning process, whether learning in a formal or informal learning manner, as there are situations where learners would need to learn through their own media or space, basing on their own needs and wants, and these may or may not be addressed through the “contracts” or education provision.
Thomas is pretty convinced on the merits of Connectivism and he elaborated here on How did we get here:
I know that Connectivism, for example, works for me personally. I am a member of several networks which follow a rich practice of Aggregate-Remix-Repurpose-Feed It Forward.
Many of my colleagues are also successfully engaged in the practice of connectivism with their colleagues and students, in various settings. Yet, I have not come across any serious scholarly research that is being done.
We have conducted researches in this area: our research papers on Blogs and Forums as Communication and Learning Tools in a MOOC and The Ideals and Reality of Participating in a MOOC. There are also numerous researches done by Rita Kop and Adrian Hill here on Connectivism: Learning theory of the future or vestige of the past? and Wendy Drexler here on Networked Student Model. The Connectivism page on wikipedia also relates to some references here.
Lindsay Jordan shared her views here:
I agree with Neil that, whether someone is, or is being, good at learning – or not – there is still value in – sometimes – being told what to read and what to listen to (provided your audio is working). The danger of entirely discovery-based learning – as Neil said – is that “people don’t know what they don’t know”.
Is discovery learning without others’ guidance “dangerous” ? May be people don’t know what they don’t know would lead them to explore what they know and what they don’t know after all. So there are risks involved in any sort of discovery learning, though it would be worthwhile to consider the impact and value of such learning on the learners. I have shared some aspects of discovery learning in my previous posts. Would that be a big question under connectivism?
If I have read Lindsay’s message correctly, then it seems that she has reservations in the use of social media in formal higher education.
My own interim conclusion on the social media front is to carry on going with what my students want to do. I’m not going to start making them use social media, or even recommending it, but I’ll continue to encourage open debate on the benefits and challenges, and if they are interested in giving it a go I’ll give them all the help and advice they need.
No one could compel anyone to use social media, I suppose, especially under the formal education and learning environment. However, would the use of social media add value to education and learning in this 21 st century? There are lots of issues as discussed in the presentation: (1) acknowledging the ideological nature of social media and education, (2) the over-valorisation of the informal and the institutionalised, (3) social media are not necessarily fair media, and (4) social media and the commodification of learning.
I could see the implications (the fear) associated with social media and education as presented by Neil Selwyn.
Whether one is to base the practice of networked learning on Connectivism (as a theory) or not however, is one matter, though this could be very important. In fact, what we are more interested in would be how the actual practice could inform us how and why we learn (better) through such connections, media and technology, which is also why George and Stephen are interested in experimenting with this under the Connectivism course. This is also my quest to research https://suifaijohnmak.wordpress.com/2010/09/27/plenk2010-research-into-the-design-and-delivery-of-mooc-i/with MOOC and PLENK in practice.
As I am still exploring about Connectivism (since 2008, or even before that) I would like to hear about Matthias view that: “it is not very important whether Connectivism is already a theory or not, because it is much more: I guess it is a fertile soil for multiple future theories.”
What sort of theories would you anticipate?I have been thinking about what goes beyond connections, since when I ask the basic question: “What makes the connections?” It goes back to neuroscience and then all those questions on why and how connections happened and how they relate to learning seems to “stop” there. You mentioned that:”Currently, discussions often diverge into the more spectacular #3, or into philosophical issues and connectionism and #1.”
I am curious in how the connection of “connections” make it through. Have been thinking a similar analogy towards the unified theory – that explains learning at a micro and macro level (similar to the 3 levels) as described under Connectivism but would like to go beyond that to “integrate” learning through the cognitive and social level, with a complexity approach – i.e. considering emergent learning and the “energy particles” that spark the learning connections. Would an understanding of String Theory (as a metaphor) of how knowledge and learning is integrated help?
As I have shared also in my previous posts:
Do you think we could gain more insights through the discourse, reflection of these theories? Community of Practice, Actor Network Theory, Complexity Theory , Connectivism by George and Connectivism and transculturality by Stephen
Would a hybrid model of learning provide us with better alternative perspectives on networked learning? I wonder!
May be we are all looking at learning from different angles, perspectives, just that we don’t see them with the same lenses only!
LEARNING is LEARNING, LEARNING IN ACTION, TO BE, TO BECOME….
And learning is about action – that explains why I have been researching into this area for some time since CCK08.
I have to focus on research findings, analysis and reporting this coming weeks and months.