Thursday, 17 June 2010

H800: Week 18 – A2 – The researcher’s perspective

Various readings from: TLRP-TEL 2008 Report, Education 2.0? Designing the Web for Teaching and Learning

Crook: What are Web 2.0 technologies, and why do they matter?

The meaning of "virtualisation of exchange practices": In a face-to-face / physical context, exchange practices involve the direct, verbal and paper-based exchange of information, ideas and money between parties. In a Web 2.0 environment the practices are 'virtual' and there are infinite possibilities.

Selwyn: Educational hopes and fears for Web 2.0

I think the fears which some educators have are understandable. Some educators will have spent their entire lives learning and teaching in a traditional educational environment. Web 2.0 may seem like an alien world in which the educator has to effectively give up a lot of the controls which they have traditionally held. It is perfectly natural that this will be greeted with some fear. This may include fear for the learning process, fear for the loss of traditional skills, and the loss of students' ability to think critically, and fear for the loss of the respect which scholarly activity is traditionally afforded.

I appreciate the need for caution in these matters and I would be concerned about blindly embracing Web 2.0, but personally I am more excited about the potential benefits than I am fearful of the downsides.

Carr: Learning and virtual world

Despite my general enthusiasm for Web 2.0, I must confess that I find the whole idea of Second Life somewhat strange. I have never experienced Second Life so I am loathe to be too dismissive of something I have never tried. Nevertheless, I cannot get away from feeling uncomfortable with the concept. I find it somehow false and I associate it with weirdos and sci-fi fanatics. Having said that, the examples of its use which are described seem to be perfectly reasonable. I understand that we will be exploring second life in more detail in Week 25, so perhaps I should reserve judgement.

Selwyn: Learning and social networking

As I think I may have mentioned when we looked at SNSs in an earlier week, whenever I have raised the issue of using Facebook and similar services with my students they have indicated that they see these services very much as part of their social lives rather than their education. They seemed uncomfortable with the idea of using Facebook in relation to their course and wanted to maintain a separate identity. Nevertheless, I still feel there is potential for these types of services (not necessarily Facebook) to be used in education, though I am not altogether sure of how.

Selwyn, Cook, Noss & Laurillard: Education 2.0? Towards an educational web 2.0

I think this is the most interesting of al the articles and I like the underlying theme. It is cautious yet positive and suggests that, rather than just worrying about what might happen, or dismissing Web 2.0 as irrelevant, educators should seize the initiative and reconfigure roles to exploit the power of Web 2.0 to good effect.

1 comment:

  1. Some of my friends are suggesting that I should enroll to an elearning course too. They said that it's a new way of acquiring education and this E-learning development does offer many advantages. But I've having second thoughts. Do think it's a great idea? Thanks.

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