#Change11 Impact of social media and internet, & 21st century learning (Part 3) Final

This is a continuation of my previous post (Part 2).

Pedagogy 2.0

This paper provides a useful critique on Pedagogy 2.0.  Owen however paints a critical  picture of Pedagogy 2.0.  He says:

“Pedagogy 2.0 is clearly in crisis. The task now before us is to envision and then apply a qualitatively better and more effective upgrade to Pedagogy 2.0 in order to eliminate the serious “bugs” and shortcomings in the current version and anticipate future challenges. Any next-generation “Pedagogy 3.0” for coming decades must be crafted to enlist the power of existing and future digital technology, with all its real capabilities and even realer limitations, to the task of helping our students succeed, individually and collectively, in an ever harsher, more challenging and increasingly dangerous online and material world in decades to come.

The crisis of Pedagogy 2.0 is more ideological and rhetorical than it is educational.  Any real solution, if it is to be successful, must address the ideological and rhetorical issues raised in this study”.

Owen continues:

“Is it best to teach our students, developmental or mainstream, as though everyone were destined to produce at Pixar Studios, write the Great American Novel, or become the next Steve Jobs? If not, what do students need to learn in college to allow them to be what they dream of becoming over their lifetimes? And how can and should Pedagogy 3.0 help form that next generation of proud American working people? “Nurturing true talent in a sea of amateurs may be the real challenge in today’s Web 2.0 world. … The reality is that we now live in a highly specialized society, where excellence is rewarded and where professionals receive years of training to properly do their jobs” (Keen, 2008). Our job should be to enable, empower, and yes, require our students to achieve precisely that degree of excellence.

And, our Pedagogy 3.0 must serve the larger society as well. Dron (2006) suggests that “increasing use of social software and informal instant communication technologies may distribute control more evenly through the system.” Though the “system” he refers to is the Internet, we must also apply his statement to the broader “system” that is society and the working world.”

I think that there are many potential benefits which technology could offer, and the merits of conversation as an essential part of learning – with diversity of opinions, and distributed knowledge growth whilst learning with the Pedagogy, despite the crisis of Pedagogy 2.0 as cited.

I would like to reflect on some of the teachings by Confucius on character development and self improvement, relating to what makes a better person, who also values diversity of opinions, and the importance of objectivity.

“Confucius recommended a more universal perspective. “The better person can see a question from all sides without bias. The lesser person is biased and can see a question only from one side.”98 The broader view enables one to be guided by the higher standard of justice. “A better person in dealing with the world is not for anything or against anything; one follows what is right.”99 The higher viewpoint begins from neutrality in order to see objectively. What is it which leads most people away from justice? “The better person understands what is right; the lesser person understands profit.”100

How about Higher Education and Web 2.0?

One of the findings reminded us of the implications of Web 2.0 technologies : “The processes of engaging with Web 2.0 technologies develop a skill set that matches both to views on 21st century learning skills and to those on 21st-century employability skills – communication, collaboration, creativity, leadership and technology proficiency.”

In this post by Tony Bates, he argues that technology is an essential part of innovation, especially in distance education and online learning: “innovation is essential, and why learning technologies need to be a central part of such innovation.”

How to develop a Pedagogy that would serve individuals, based on personal autonomy, and would serve the larger society as well?

There are evidences indicating that PLE/PLN together with a learning model based on MOOC and Connectivism do have great potential in the development of a Pedagogy that would serve both the individuals and the larger society as reported by Rita in her post on the research publications of Massive Open Online Courses and PLE.

In this Kop, R., Fournier, H., Mak, S.F. J. (2011). A Pedagogy of Abundance or a Pedagogy to Support Human Beings? Participant Support on Massive Open Online CoursesThe International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning. Vol 12, No. 7 (2011).

“A challenge associated with the educational use of the Web, social networking, and media, based on the MOOC distributed learning model, is that the open, emergent, chaotic nature of online interaction might conflict with the rigidly organized social structure of formal education, which involves prescriptive learning, standardized goals and curricula, fixed schedules, age-based grouping, classroom-based organization, and examinations. This formal view of education is problematic for professional learning and highlights a tension between learning in everyday life facilitated by emerging technologies and the philosophical stance and the pedagogies adopted by universities. A change in the thinking, philosophy, design, and pedagogies of institution-based online courses may be necessary if the affordances of emerging technologies are embraced and adopted within formal educational institutions. Considerable efforts will also be required to ensure an effective balance between openness and constraints when an online institutional course is fused with social networks.”

Internet of Things

We would likely be relying more on the Internet of Things in our future of education and learning.  This means that we can no longer rely solely on the traditional means of transferring knowledge and information behind class walled gardens – lectures.  Learners would resort to more innovative technology to support their life-long learning, and so HE institutions must respond to such needs in order to be relevant and to provide valuable learning experience for their educators and learners.

Social Networked Learning

Here is George’s presentation on social networked learning in complex information environments:

Picture: from Google

21st Century University

Finally, here are the videos on 21st Century University:

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#Change11 Impact of social media and internet, & 21st century learning (Part 2)

I enjoyed reading this post by Grainne, where she writes:

“He then turned to Ron Barnett’s work (2005) on textual instability, suggesting this gives an example of the instability in academia’s ideas of itself. Barnett goes on to argue that the media implicated in the academy’s inability to claim universality in its pursuit of truth – supercomplexity related to texts a world of uncertainty all notions, such as truth come under scrutiny, revised and contested, concepts broken open and subject to multiple interpretation. Ray questioned how can we prepare our students to cope with this supercomplexity?

He talked about Mark Poster’s notions of authority and the notion of the academic gate keeper. Poster explored digitization and the effect on all aspects of social. He argued that this has resulted in the breaking down of boundaries in academic roles and identities. Ray wondered what would be the implications of a world in which all texts were digital and in which there were no originals. More broadly, what is the role of the university and the discipline in this context, where here is now no authority?”

How are we going to prepare students to cope with this supercomplexity?

In this Teaching for Supercomplexity: A Pedagogy for Higher Education by Ronald Barnett and Susan Hallam, the question of : “What forms of learning and teaching are appropriate to a learning society and globalization” was raised.  In face of supercomplexity, it is important to develop students not just ‘core skills’ but self reliance.  Graduates will have to have powers of ‘self-reliance’ in order to cope with and to act purposely in that world.

There are many ways of helping students to develop such self reliance. I have come up with the following:

(1) Learning to learn – a connectivist approach towards learning,

(2) Creation and development of a learning platform where the community of learners learn together, based upon their goals, and their social needs,

(3) Incorporation of future of education strategies,

(4) A change from traditional pedagogy to digital and netagogy.

What is the role of the university?

In this post by Stephen, he asks if internet would destroy the ivory tower.

Stephen says:  “I suspect that in the near future we are going to see a lot of experimentation with new forms of higher education, reflecting the fact that these institutions in fact serve many purposes other than merely transmitting knowledge/skills to students.”

This led me to reflect on this – what the internet means for how we think about the world.

“Yet, for the coming generation, knowing looks less like capturing truths in books than engaging in never-settled networks of discussion and argument. That social activity — collaborative and contentious, often at the same time — is a more accurate reflection of our condition as imperfect social creatures trying to understand a world that is too big and too complex for even the biggest-headed expert.”

So that is why social network and media could likely be the minefield that would  determine the future of education and learning.

Social Media and Networks

This Social Media facts and statistics tells the story.

“Social networks play a prominent role in Internet users’ life as they spend significant number of hours daily either by chatting, uploading pictures or sharing information. Leaving behind all other social networks Facebook has embraced 800 million users and still increasing as the days roll down. On the other hand Twitter has an active user base of 100+ million while LinkedIn influences 133.98 million active users.”

Here are 21st century learning videos:

So, here is how we were caught in the web:

See Part 3 in a coming post soon.

#Change11 Social Media Literacies and Multiple Intelligences

This week’s session by Howard Rheingold relates to the fundamental social media literacy.

Howard concluded that “one important step that people can take is to become more adept at five essential literacies for a world of mobile, social, and always-on media: attention, crap detection, participation, collaboration, and network know-how.”

Would the following categorization help?

Personal literacy: Attention, crap detection

Social literacty: Participation, collaboration

Socio-technological literacy: Network know-how

Relating to crap detection, Howard says:

“Although the Web undermines authority, the usefulness of authority as another clue to credibility hasn’t entirely disappeared. I would add credibility points if a source is a verified professor at a known institution of higher learning, an authentic M.D. or Ph.D., but I wouldn’t subtract points from uncredentialed people whose expertise seems authentic. Nor would I stop at simply verifying that the claim to be a professor is valid.” Great advice.

I have reflected on the basic questions here:

There are 6 important questions raised:

1. Where is it coming from?

2. What are the implications of thinking like that? What are the social, political, economical and environmental implications?

3. How could this be thought otherwise?

4. Who decides?  Who decides what’s true, normal, mainstream?

5. In whose name is this statement made?

6. For whose benefit?

I am mulling over the discussion on the evolving definition of experthere.

In reflection this could be referred to:

Question 4: Who decides?  Who is the authority in the subject domain?

Question 5: In whose name is this statement made?  This is particularly the case in referring to the authorities in research.  What are the credentials of those experts?  Are they theorists, practitioners or both?

Question 6: For whose benefit?  Who would benefit most from the decision made? How about the power?

Do you see experts as the main source of critical literacies?  Who are the experts?  How about leaders as experts?

How would these literacies be developed in social networks and formal education? Would that be learning by doing, thinking and reflection?  I think it would also relate to critical thinking, sensemaking and way-finding, whilst navigating and constructing networks under Connectivism.

What about the intelligence one has in order to develop those literacies in online education and learning environment?

I have been thinking about multiple intelligences (MI) for the last two decades.  Here Howard Gardner provides an interesting presentation on MI.  As Howard mentioned, MI is a way of thinking.

My main take away from Howard’s MI presentation is that MI has its soil on certain cultural roots, where democracy and individualization of education and learning is encouraged and supported.  However, there might be some constraints when such way of thinking is introduced into a culture where centralization of power is involved.  Under such centralized education system, MI might have potential to flourish, provided individualized learning is allowed.  The use of Personal Learning Environment (PLE) might better align with this MI way of thinking, where the learner would decide which of those capacities he or she has would be of interests for development.

#Change11 Change, happiness and social artistry

Positive thinking, isn’t that the solution towards reducing depression, changing ourselves, and changing the world, for the better?  May be.

Here are some quotes from Take Control of your life by Dr Gail Ratcliffe

Why does your life get out of control: “One is not disturbed by things but by the views one takes of them.” EPICTETUS

Change your attitude if you can’t change the situation: “Our lives are what our thoughts make of them.” MARCUS AURELIUS

In Change your thinking by Dr Sarah Edelman

Life is difficult.  This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths.  It is in the process of meeting and solving problems that life has its meaning. SCOTT PECK, The Road Well Travelled

So, what does one need to do in respond to changes?  Should one change his/her thinking, or attitudes?

Here is a story adapted from The Magic of Thinking Big by Dr David J. Schwartz

Our six-year-old son David felt mighty big when he was graduated from Kindergarten.  I asked him what he plans to be when he finishes growing up. David answered, “Dad, I want to be a Professor.”

A Professor? A Professor of what?” I asked.

Well, Dad,” he replied, “I think I want to be a Professor of Happiness.”

Isn’t it pretty ambitious?  But is there such a Professor of Happiness in the world? Here Daniel Gilbert, Professor Happiness says:

We know that the best predictor of human happiness is human relationships and the amount of time that people spend with family and friends.

We know that it’s significantly more important than money and somewhat more important than health. That’s what the data shows. The interesting thing is that people will sacrifice social relationships to get other things that won’t make them as happy — money. That’s what I mean when I say people should do “wise shopping” for happiness.

Human relationships could be best predictor of human happiness.  Based on that belief, I followed Nancy’s lead on social artistry where Jean Houston explains Social Artistry:

Social Artistry is the art of enhancing human capacities in the light of social complexity. It seeks to bring new ways of thinking, being and doing to social challenges in the world.

That’s where I would like to start to explore on.  Here is the social artistry study group

“Social Artistry is an emerging discipline in leadership development. It taps inherent human capacities for greater imagination, compassion, and resolve. The discipline integrates science and intellectual development, using multiple styles of thinking, expanding skills for contemporary leadership challenges, and applying these skills to complex social issues and organizational development.”

Sounds new and interesting to me!

CCK09 Is a scientific approach towards learning important?

Feynman in this video provides a unique perspective on social science.  It sounds challenging to most social scientists.

I agree on the rigorous checks that are necessary on any “Theory” based on a scientific approach.  It would be useful to adopt a scientific approach in exploring the multiple forms of truths.  May be it’s important to reflect on the “trial and error” approach towards learning and education that are prevalent at this digital age, especially with PLN/PLE and Web 2.0.  How about the pedagogy behind all these PLN/PLE in teaching and learning? 

My favourite is to adopt an empirical approach in understanding the science of learning and the associated learning theory – in particular Connectivism.  That’s why I like the research that we have just completed.   

Learning could be viewed both as art and science.  However I think a scientific approach is necessary, but not sufficient in understanding learning.  We also need an artistic approach in revealing the myths of learning.  But how?   May be the performance artists, the curators, the expert educators and our networkers could educate us more on these – with the repurposing, re-creating, re-producing of new forms of artefacts.  We may all appreciate the emergent learning experiences that we could “feel” and “sense” and way find with those learning, though such “learning” could be difficult to be proven using scientific methods. 

Enjoy this.

How could we improve our understanding of learning and education from an artistic and scientific point of view? 

Neuroscience, Network Theory, Complexity Theory, Actor Network Theory, Activity Theory, Situation Learning Theory, Cognitivism, Constructivism, and Connectivism.  These are all useful for understanding learning.  However, we may still be far from understanding the holistic “spirit” and “scientific basis” behind “postmodernism” of learning – our ecology of learning or the Complex Adaptive Ecology of Learning

Is a scientific approach towards learning still important to you? How would you apply such an approach?