Learning Design and Complexity Science

My response to Jenny’s post on OLDSMOOC Design:

Hi Jenny and Roy,
I agreed with what Roy said, that you are a learning designer if you do all those things in a course, in an adaptive manner. What might typically happened is that instructional designers plan and design the curriculum, with multi-media and gamification in mind, trying to incorporate all the “essential” learning objects and artifacts to achieve the desired education outcomes (the learning outcomes, in the case of a course). The input management – or compliance with lesson plans are typically judged to be excellent when “all elements” of good instruction – like Gagne’s 9 steps of instruction are followed in a classroom environment, or that of mastery learning is followed, with sensory feedback and repeated drills and practice on the learners.

I wonder if we need to separate instruction design from learning design, as the former relates more on instruction (demonstration and modelling), whilst the latter relates more on (practice and reflection) (based on Stephen Downes’ proposed connectivist model), especially when learning is structured under MOOC.

I have been thinking about having learning design based on complexity science where:

“Complexity science, with its focus on emergence, self organization, inter-dependencies, unpredictability and non-linearity provides a useful alternative to the machine metaphor.
Complexity science suggests that the whole is not the sum of the parts. Emergent properties of the whole are inexplicable by the parts.” to study learning design, so each learning scenario needs to be re-modelled based on “grounded research” rather than a prescribed approach to the design of learning.

This might have a lot of similarities to your research on the footprint of emergence, though I think it really makes more sense when the teacher and learner shared their assumptions and frame of reference upon each learning task and experience, and thus making learning design a collaborative reflective experience, rather than a pre-determined learning pathway and learning outcomes.”

This sort of emergent learning could be based on narratives that are exchanged through blog postings and sharing, or project-based learning, between peer-to-peer and student-to-instructor.

Would that account for the differences between curriculum-led MOOC (typical for xMOOC) and community-led MOOC (typical for cMOOC)?

Such MOOC would be similar to the model in the AST1000 Course though I have been thinking of having a community led MOOC, rather than a curriculum led MOOC.