#Change11 #CCK12 What is the price of copying and plagiarism?

In this what is plagiarism:

plagiarism is an act of fraud. It involves both stealing someone else’s work and lying about it afterward.

Is copying the same as plagiarizing?  It seems that people could be a good “copier”, but not necessarily a plagiarizer, as the argument goes here.  “Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg resigned after revelations that a large portion of his doctoral dissertation had been plagiarised.”

There are lots of controversies about copying others’ work, and in academia, a big concern relates to plagiarism.

How to prevent or minimize such plagiarism in higher education and research?  In this review of “A Handbook for Deterring Plagiarism in Higher Education”, Jude comments:

“The main hope seems to lie in re-designing courses and assessments so that plagiarism is rendered more difficult.  There is also the task of how to get the message across to the students.”

In MOOCs, we may be able to develop effective strategies in combating plagiarism by encouraging and supporting participants to debate and discuss about the importance of proper citing of information sources, and to re-write or develop their artifacts in their own words, ideas as far as practicable.  This could be reinforced with a connectivist learning approach, where participants would develop posts, artifacts based on aggregation, curation, re-mixing, re-purposing (or even re-creating) and  feed-forwarding such artifacts to the open public, with proper citing the sources of information.

Using such an approach not only would encourage and support participants to develop creativity and to aggregate  and curate innovative ideas in their artifacts development, but also ensuring that such “copying and remixing” of ideas are worked out in an ethical and professional manner.  Indeed, we all learn by sharing and copying of each others’ ideas, and re-forming or mixing our own ideas and concepts that would lead to new and emergent concepts in our learning journey.  These are important aspects in digital literacy and are crucial to digital scholarship.

Plagiarism in research could be a concern especially when there are difficulties in tracing the source of original ideas and authors who posted those ideas.  How to avoid plagiarism in networked research may be a good research topic in MOOC.  What do you think?

Here are some further resources on plagiarism:

What are some of your strategies in dealing with plagiarism?

#Change11 #CCK12 How would online learners feel about collaborative learning?

In this Are Online Learners Frustrated with Collaborative Learning Experience by Neus Capdeferro and Margarida Romero:

The analysis of student frustration in our study also shows that assessment inequities are important sources of frustration; the implication for institutions is that they must conduct a coherent assessment. The use of individual, self, peer, and group assessment techniques can be extremely beneficial for both students and instructors in all forms of online collaborative learning (Roberts, 2005).

Institutions may supply learning environments that facilitate social interaction and collaboration and assure effective support to students with technological difficulties. Technological difficulties can cause student frustration as well as communication problems, which hamper collaborative processes such as explanations, sharing answers, and negotiation (Ragoonaden & Bordeleau, 2000).

The implication for instructors is that it is improtant to to know when intervention is needed in online CSCL and to what degree. Teachers with instructional and student experience in online CSCL (having completed at least one course) will be aware of sources of frustration and will take corrective actions. The instructor should play an active role in the collaborative process. He or she should be proactive in monitoring and intervening in collaborative activities (Chapman & van Auken, 2001; Hansen, 2006) and should ensure that the group works effectively (Tideswell, 2004; Brindley, Walti, & Blaschke, 2009) through mechanisms for assistance, feedback, and evaluation.

Based on the above findings and conclusion, it seems that such frustrations are often associated with the assessment, in terms of equities, fairness in assessment of individuals and the group, and the apportioning of efforts and contribution of individual group members.  This is a common issue though even in face-to-face learning scenario.  This relates to the design of assessment projects, activities, and the use of tools such as wikis, blogs (individual and group blogs) and the forum by learners.

In the case of MOOCs, since assessments were only formally applicable to credit learners (with 24 credit learners in CCK08) and not to the 2400 plus non-credit learners, the equity in assessment might not be that apparent or even an issue.  Here in The Meaning of Connectivism for Learning Design George Siemens explains about how assessment was done in CCK08.

What are the feelings of people being assessed in CCK and MOOCs?  As highlighted in my previous posts, previous MOOC researches revealed that participants put assessments rather low in priority, among other factors of success.  The possible reason would be that non-credit learners weren’t looking for formal accreditation, and so they didn’t see assessment as mandatory throughout the course of study.  Besides, participants could choose what they like to learn in the course, in order to achieve their learning goals (like the development of PLE, or the learning of tools, or the theory and practice of Connectivism and Connective Knowledge) in networks or institutional learning.   Such learning may not be adequately assessed through the typical assessment tools and metrics designed by institutions.

Technological difficulties can cause frustration as well as communication problems.  This is common in most online learning, and so these feelings of frustration have also been found in the case of MOOC, as reported in previous researches (Mak, Williams and Jenny, 2010) on CCKs and MOOC.

In order to overcome the problem of frustrations, Neus Capdeferro and Margarida Romero reiterated the importance of knowing when to intervene, by the instructors.  Intervention by instructors seems to be part of the responsibility of the instructors, especially in formal online course.  However, to what extent would such intervention be effective, in the case of MOOC?   Kop, Fournier and Mak (2011)  in their Research on MOOCs have revealed the importance of teaching presence in enabling and supporting meaningful learning among learners:

“This research showed the importance of making connections between learners and fellow-learners and between learners and facilitators. Meaningful learning occurs if social and teaching presence forms the basis of design, facilitation, and direction of cognitive processes for the realization of personally meaningful and educationally worthwhile learning outcomes.”

I would like to conduct a comparison study on the feelings and perceptions of participants in MOOCs (i.e. past courses) with the current Change11 and CCK12 MOOCs.

Would you be interested in such research?

#Change11 #CCK12 Moving beyond Management and Leadership Part 3

In this part 3, I would like to consider and reflect on various strategies in moving beyond management and leadership in a networked learning environment.

I would re-conceptualize a model where power, transformational leadership and networks could be used to support education and learning in a networked learning ecology and platform.

There is a range of leadership theory as explained by Dr Marti Cleveland-Innes.  These include Trait-based leadership, Emergent leadership, Contingency theory and leadership, Complexity leadership, Transactional leadership, Transformational leadership, Distributed leadership.

Leadership theories seem to relate closely to the powers as vested in the leaders, in networks, communities (including family, associations) and institutions.

Power in networks

Network socieity is best illustrated by Castells.

Here is the network theories of power.

Transformational Leadership

Why having transformational leaders? We need leaders as learners who seek to transform, and to explore new and innovative ways of learning, with the affordance of technology and networks.  Based on the results of survey, transformational leadership is better than transactional leadership. To what extent is it true in real life?  Under what context would transformational leadership be more valuable?  Would it be a networked learning environment, rather than an institutional environment?

Refer to this Transformational leadership:

The Components of Transformational Leadership

Bass also suggested that there were four different components of transformational leadership.

Intellectual Stimulation – Transformational leaders not only challenge the status quo; they also encourage creativity among followers. The leader encourages followers to explore new ways of doing things and new opportunities to learn.

Individualized Consideration – Transformational leadership also involves offering support and encouragement to individual followers. In order to foster supportive relationships, transformational leaders keep lines of communication open so that followers feel free to share ideas and so that leaders can offer direct recognition of each followers unique contributions.

Inspirational Motivation – Transformational leaders have a clear vision that they are able to articulate to followers. These leaders are also able to help followers experience the same passion and motivation to fulfill these goals.

Idealized Influence – The transformational leaders serves as a role model for followers. Because followers trust and respect the leader, they emulate the leader and internalize his or her ideals.

Power and Transformational Leadership

How would power relate to Transformational Leadership?

Experts and expertise

How about the experts then? We need to rely on people who are more than just an “expert” on any one topic, but across topics.

Instead of thinking about mere experts, how about developing expertise?

Leadership relates to the development and supporting of people to become more creative and innovative, especially in higher education in developed countries – like USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia etc.

Distributed Leadership

Leadership practice takes form in the interactions between leaders and followers, rather than as a function of one or more leaders’ actions.  In the case of networks, distributed leadership could be an ideal way to practice.

Who needs Leadership?

Marti summarizes the different views on leadership in Who Needs Leadership?

Here is the slide on Who Needs Leadership.

Jenny comments on leadership:

“There’s no doubt that if everyone in a given group or network is a leader, then everyone is also a follower and a view of leadership as invested in one charismatic person would have to change. The questions we ask about leadership would have to change.

But do we really think that there is no longer a place for the charismatic leader. World events, such as what is happening in Burma at the moment would suggest otherwise. Aung San Suu Kyi is clearly thought of as a charismatic leader – a leader of change.”

I think leadership as practiced in governments is fundamentally different from that in networks, as governance would likely require charismatic leadership to steer the country, or communities, whilst network leadership would likely require a more “de-centralised” or distributed leadership to steer the networks.

In this report by Schofield, K. (1999). The purposes of education. Queensland State Education: 2010. Retrieved from http://education.qld.gov.au/corporate/qse2010/pdf/purposesofed3.pdf.:

Formal education is becoming less institutionalised

In 1971, Ivan Illich’s Deschooling Society provided a very influential statement about the negative effects of schooling. He argued for the disestablishment of schooling and the creation of learning webs.

A good educational system should have three purposes: it should provide all who want to learn with access to available resources at any time in their lives; empower all who want to share what they know to find those who want to learn it from them; and, finally, furnish all who want to present an issue to the public with the opportunity to make their challenge known. Such a system would require the application of a constitutional guarantee to education.

While seen as radical in its day, many of Illich’s ideas now seem prescient, especially in light of Internet-based interactive learning, the popularity of the concept of lifelong learning, and the idea of a youth guarantee.

The ‘de-institutionalisation’ of education is evident in other ways. Multinational companies have set up their own universities. In Australia, some companies have set up university-linked institutes for their staff training. TAFE now competes with private training firms. More formal education occurs outside the classroom – in workplaces, trains, community houses, in cyberspace.

Marti says:

According to Schofield, education is a place where people develop according to their unique needs and potential; one of the best means of achieving greater social equality is to allow every individual to develop to their full potential. Leadership requires that schools be shaped in such a way to so.  Few accomplish this goal perfectly. The critics think otherwise – education is a system created to reproduce the existing inequalities.

Based on the analysis of networks, power and leadership, here is my proposed model where leadership would be contingent to the network involved and the power associated with the networks: