Learning about elearning, m-learning, eportfolios. Also my meanders into research, in particular research into workplace learning, apprenticeships and apprentice learning, trades tutors and vocational identity formation. Plus meanderings into philosophy and neuroscience as I learn more about how we learn.
Usual disclaimers apply. This blog records my personal learning journey, experiences and thoughts and may not always be similar to the opinions of my employer.
The book is available as an ebook via the Ara library.
Timely book to inform on e-assessments project and the learning design work which makes up a large part of my present work. The book provides direction for the future of learning design as traditional models, based on constructivist / or even behavourist/instructivist models, are no longer pertinent as the education is challenged to assist learners to be sufficiently prepared for the future of work.
The book has 14 chapters organised into 3 parts.
Part 1 – foundations of emerging technologies had 5 chapters
An introductory chapter ‘the dialogue between emerging
pedagogies and emerging technologies’ is by B. Gros and sets the scene for the
book and provides overviews of each chapter. Some of the changes:
learner-centred, individual and social learning; personalised and tailor-made
learning; innovative pedagogical concepts – experiential and immersive learning
and social and cognitive process; formal institutions will need to be flexible
and dynamic; and education and training made available and accessible to all
citizens. Introduces the emerging theories of learning: theories focused on the
network (networked learning, connectivism, actor-network theory); theories
focused on social-personal interaction (heutagogy, peerology); and theories
focused on the design of network (Learning as a Network – LaaN). ). LaaN
combines aspects of connectivism, complexity theory and double-loop learning.
Learning is envisaged to be a personal network of knowledge attained through
interactions with the ‘ecological’ spheres of learning. Hence ‘emerging
pedagogies are held to: support lifelong learning and ecologies of learning;
use different forms of knowledge; integrate the use of technology as
‘mindtools’; change the nature of the traditional roles of teacher and learner;
integrate self-regulation, co-regulation and social share regulation; promote
deep learning tasks; are transparent; based on socio-constructivists
pedagogies; and require new forms of assessment.
Chapter 2 overviews principles of “heutagogy: a holistic
framework for creating 21st century self-determined learners’ by L
M. Blashke and S. Haase. Introduces, defines heutagogy as a form of
self-determined learning and rationalises it as a holistic, learning-centred
approach. Characteristics are learner-centred and determined; based on
capability, self-reflection and metacognition; allows for double-loop learning
along with nonlinear learning and teaching. Presents the affordances for
heutagogy as availed by digital technologies. The heutagogy learning ‘loop’
cycles through / touches base with activities to explore, create, collaborate,
connect, share and reflect.
P. B. Sloep contributes the next chapter on ‘design fornetworked learning’. Networked learning is defined as learning using computer
networks for educational activity. Uses the distinctions between epistemic,
social and set design to guide the design of networked learning. Critiques the
process and suggests improvements. Epistemic design involves ensuring learning
activities are aligned to the achievement of learning outcomes. Uses
Laurillard’s work – design patterns for learning – as a frame complete the
epistemic design. Social design is based on socio-cultural learning theories
including the work of Brown and Duiguid – the social life of information and
Lave and Wenger’s communities of practice. Set design includes the selection of
appropriate tools to support epistemic and social design. It is essential these
tools are used in a holistic manner, so the various ‘elements’ of learning are
connected and assist self-directed (heutological) learning.
Chapter 4 is on ‘why do we want data for learning? Learninganalytics and the laws of media’ by E.D. Gazulla and T. Leinonen. Provides
theoretical and analytical understanding and discusses pros and cons. Of note
is the connection between LA and the types of pedagogies that can be supported.
Examples include analytics to support learning through the use of social
networking, discourse, content learning, dispositional learning and student
centred approaches. The proviso is to ensure the correct type of LA is used to support
the appropriate learning approach. Mis-match leads to invalid data being used
to support decision making!
The fifth chapter is on ‘articulating personal pedagogies
through learning ecologies’ with M. F. Maina and I.G. Gonzalez. Proposes
learning ecologies as one way to explore ‘frontier’ pedagogies to connect the
formal, non-formal and informal learning contexts of individuals. The chapter
provides background on the evolution of learning ecologies including personal
learning ecologies. Presently, attempts to match the needs of individual’s
learning to the offerings of ‘mass education’ have been disappointing. Moving
to personal learning environments (PLEs) requires large shifts in how education
is valued, measured, accreditated etc. PLEs implies learners use their
self-direction to learning through all spheres of their lives, through formal,
‘informal, networked, socially-connected means. Having to ‘measure’ these, and
whether this is the way to go, requires investigation and rationalisation.
Chapter 6 provides some ideas.
Part 2 covers learning design for emerging technologies with
N. S. Selander contributes with chapter 6 on
‘conceptualization of multimodal and distributed design for learning’. The
chapter describes the shifting from SYSTEM 1 (stable structures, national
curricula, classroom teaching, printed school textbooks and assessment
standards) to SYSTEM2 (dynamic (global change), development of digitized media,
cognitive systems, mobile learning and individual learning from 2000 onwards. SYSTEM
2 requires the development of a new paradigm for the future curriculum,
including new ways to recognise learning and need for new assessment practices
(and standards); need to account for and understand learning in relation to
multimodal design; and the role of digital media in organisation of school work
Current theories of learning founded on SYSTEM 1. Proposes
the use of ‘learning design sequences’ as a basic unit of learning. LDL model –
Learning design sequences – see this article for further details.
Chapter 7 by A. Littlejohn and L. McGill covers ‘ecologies
of open resources and pedagogies of abundance’. Presents analysis of diverse
pedagogies enabling learners to capitalise on digital, open resources. The
emphasis is not on the content but on helping learners to create and navigate
their own pathways. This is a modern take on ‘constructivism’ with good
examples of how to leverage off the ease of access to open resources and how
learning can be designed to make the most of the affordances availed.
The next chapter discusses ‘educational design and
construction: processes and technologies’ by S. McKenney and T. C. Reeves.
Comprehensive chapter which provides a range of learning design approaches to
deal with the present and future challenging learning environment. Design
through exploring and mapping and construction of solutions is covered. This
chapter provides the ‘how do we get from design’ to actually implementing the
solution. Strategies for idea generation (synectics, SCAMPER, Slip writing,
picture taking) followed by how to consider the idea (Dr Bono’s hats, courtroom
challenges, SWOT analysis, weighted ranking) and idea checking using logic
modelling. The solution mapping involves refining design, using skeleton design
and constructing the detailed design specifications. Initial solution building
includes management of the prototyping process using assistance form project
management tools – critical path, gannt charts, milestone map, Rasci matrix
followed by evaluation of iterations and consideration of revisions. Outputs of
the entire exercise include the need to record and synthesise frameworks.
‘User-centred design: supporting learning designs’
versioning in a community platform’ is by J. Chacon-Perez, D. Hernandez-Leo, Y.
Mor and J. I. Asensio-Perez. Reports on a project whereby a community platform
called Integrated Learning Design Environment (ILDE) is used to share and
assist with co-editing of resources and activities for implementation into
learning programmes. Represents a ‘worked-example’ case study genre. Many of
the ideas presented in the preceding chapters are used in the ILDE.
Chapter 10 by F. Pozzi, J. I. Asensio-Perez and D. Persico
is on ‘the case for multiple representations in the learning design life cycle’.
As per chapter 9, chapter 10 reports on a project. The project uses
visualisation to assist with learning design across time. Principles of
multimodality are applied and used across both the approaches deployed in the
learning design and in how the overall learning design process is recorded for
later evaluation and analysis. Of importance is the assertion that ‘one size
does not fit all’ and the use of the ‘life cycle’ as a guide, not a framework
set in concrete.
The last part is on adaptive and personalised learning with
Chapter 11 covers ‘measurement of quality of a course:
analysis of analytics’ by J. Seanosky et al. Recommends not just the evaluation
of courses at the end through learner feedback, but continually, formatively
and summatively, using factors across learner motivation, learner capacity,
learners’ increasing competency and instructor competency.
The next chapter by T. Zarraonandia, P. Diaz and I. Aedo is
on ‘modeling games for adaptive and personalised learning’. Of interest to
those incorporating elements of gamification into learning design. The chapter
provides a good overview and discusses ways to ensure games are developed to
allow for personalised learning to flourish.
Chapter 13 is by I. A. Zualkernan who discusses
‘personalised learning for the developing world’. Introduces various models
supporting the development of PLE type educational programmes for developing
countries. Acknowledges the difference in resource and access between the
developed and developing contexts and provides some ideas to assist with
Last chapter is by A. Alun on ‘understanding cognitive
profiles in designing personalised learning environments. Describes the use of
neuropsychological tests’ potential to determine learners’ cognitive profiles
and how these can be applied to better understanding and designing programmes
based on personalised learning environments. Perhaps a chapter that could have
gone earlier into the book. This chapter uses neurological / cognitive
characteristics to assist with the design of PLEs. Takes on the view of ‘know
the learner’ and matched to better way to present learning so learner is able
to access. Various neuropsychological tests detailed. Discusses how we all deal
with attention, memory, navigate through information etc. differently. Proposes
future work on harnessing the individual’s ‘ways of doing’ to help enhance /
mediate / support their learning.
All in, the book rewards for time put into reading the many chapters. Each chapter brings with it an approach to learning design that is supported and informed by previous scholarly works and supplemented by projects in the field. My challenge is to tease out the items which are relevant to our work at Ara. Given the diversity of discipline areas and levels of learning within Ara, there will be congruence between some of the theories described in the various chapters, and the graduate profiles / learning outcomes required. Will need to read through the salient chapters to identify the approaches which we can use or adapt.