Friday, May 30, 2008


There is a lot of milage in thinking about how networks and networked learning involving them are emergent. I was just reflecting on the fact that I have just started to follow Glyn on twitter. Bearing in mind the high degree of textual aptitude journalists have, has following/being followed by Glyn added something to my awareness of audience...? I may be more cautious about just posting the fact that it is 'well past time for a shave' in favour of something less visceral, more salubrious to my imagined projection of self.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


Just wanted to flag up this service which I wrote about in my main blog here:
This is an example of how technology can promote connections within a lecture and perhaps enduringly so outwith the event itself...

Thursday, May 8, 2008

is networked learning any different to e-learning?

many would say no. Is that it? Does it matter?
Are these pages
different in any meaningful way?

Just for HE?

The roots of the definition of Networked Learning are based in Higher Education use of technology for learning. Does this implicitly limit the usefulness of the definition for other contexts?

who/what 'promotes connections'?

The next question that occurred to me as I try to operationalise the definition is, exactly who or what does the 'promoting connections'? I think Chris Jones paper on a 'social practice perspective of Networked Learning' is saying that a book or a comment in a lecture or an email could 'promote connections' which makes networked learning a very broad term 'excluding nothing'. This makes networked learning almost just a frame of reference or a lens with which to see the world rather than a verb or a set of skills as per connectivism or as I have been considering in another post.

Monday, May 5, 2008

What is it to 'promote connections'? and is that 'enough' anyway?

Chris Jones has examined the kinds of connections or links that facilitate networked learning, Thomas Ryberg is saying that we should also pay attention to the 'flow' along those links. My comment is that those links need managing (Nardi et al) and that this is a real overhead that we need to learn to manage. Furthermore, if this is a kind of meta skill, should we be encouraging it in our students? And if we can demonstrate that an educational intervention did or did not 'promote connections' between students and their peers/learning resources/knowledge, does that sound like a quality measure...?

Friday, May 2, 2008

What does it mean to be networked learned?

In June 2007 I posted the following message to the networked learning jiscmail list :

I have been thinking about the definition of networked learning and what it means for assessment - especially the central notion of 'promoting connections'. I've come to a question I think might be worth pursuing - what does it mean to be 'network learned'? That is, if one had gone through a degree programme that was designed to 'promote connections', what would characterise the students who graduated from it? Perhaps they would just be the 'embodiment of critical thinking', or some other commonly held aspiration for a modern graduate...
Unfortunately, the 2 responses were about the means of conducting assessment via networks rather than the learning outcomes that any assessment might measure. I tried to re-word the question and eventually sent the following:

I mean, what would a person look like, what would make them different (better even?) from someone who had learned via Communities of Practice or lectures/tutorials? My colleague Joe's off-the-bat response to that was 'appropriateness'. Having the 'right' clutch of the 'right' kind of connections that can be 'activated' (all inverted comma concepts in need of unpacking!) in a timely way - not just to people but to resources (of course). Is that a good measure of networked learningness? (am I a good example of having been 'networked learned' since I'm foisting this on your inbox via this jiscmail list?!) Assuming it should, can that be bottled and taught? Can it then be factored in to assessment leading to accreditation? As I said before, all of this might 'just' mean the kinds of things we already hope to see in 'good' students...
Thoughts anyone?