1. Meta‐design principles for open learning ecosystems Kai Pata Tallinn University, Ins;tute of Informa;cs Center for Educa;onal Technology MUPPLE Lecture Series, 2011
2. An overview • What is an eco‐cogni;ve view to learning? – The examples of open learning ecosystems in course design – The learning niches and how to use them in learning design – Why to use the meta‐design approach? – The meta‐design approach to open learning ecosystems – Some developments and limita;ons for meta‐ design from the soFware side
3. Open learning ecosystems • Open learning ecosystem is an open, adap;ve complex and dynamic learning system in which self‐directed learners design their learning ac;vi;es and follow open educa;on principles by sharing freely over the internet knowledge, ideas, infrastructure and teaching methodology using Web 2.0 soFware.
4. Par;cle and system level views to open learning ecosystems Learners in open learning “Ecosystem” not as a metaphor ecosystems: • Self‐direc;ng • Self‐regula;ve • Networking, PLEs, PLNs • “Connec;vist Networks” in open learning ecosystems • Communi;es of open • “Community” of digital cultures educa;on • Co‐designing and sharing • Open, Dynamic and Evolving • Accumula;ng • Monitoring • An evolu;onary feedback loop • Adap;ng • Naviga;ng
5. Towards the learner‐centered approach • Two pedagogical paradigms have been highlighted in open learning ecosystems. • Firstly, the interpre;vist learning principles suggest that students should be: – guided towards becoming independent, autonomous and self‐directed learners) – who learn from being ac;vely engaged in the situa;ons that are meaningful to them, from their interac;ons with peers and teachers in which they are given the voice so they that they can become co‐ constructers of the learning environment – and by reﬂec;ng on their prior knowledge and experiences to construct new meanings
6. An example course ICamp interna;onal eLearning course (Pata & Merisalo, 2010)
7. Towards the learner‐centered approach • Secondly, for cul;va;ng the “ecosystem” view in digital systems (see Pór & Molloy, 2000; Crabtree & Rodden, 2007; Boley & Chang, 2007), George Siemens (2006) formulated the Connec;vism framework as the new learning theory for open learning ecosystems. • Connec;vism assumes that: – Learning is primarily a network‐forming process, and the dynamically appearing and changing networks form basis for the learning ecosystems
8. An example course Ecology of narra;ves course (Pata & Fuksas, 2009 hap://padis2.uniroma1.it:81/ojs/index.php/cogphil/ar;cle/view/4338/4200
9. A gap in design principles for open learning ecosystems • Without wishing to suppress down such a boaom‐up self‐emergence of eLearning designs, we should provide teachers in learning ins;tu;ons with design solu;ons that enable them to regain some co‐control in the learner‐ini@ated ac@vi@es and systems is needed (Fiedler and Pata, 2009).
10. A gap in design principles for open learning ecosystems • The teachers’ need to control the learning design and learning process in distributed systems • The necessity to allow freedom for learners to be self‐directed and using their own personal learning environments in higher educa;on courses
11. Oﬄoading cogni;ve func;ons to the digital ecosystem • Humans constantly delegate cogni@ve func@ons to the environment (Bardone, 2011)
12. An eco‐cogni;ve view to learning • Human cogni@on is chance‐seeking system that is developed within an evolu;onary framework based on the no;on of cogni@ve niche construc@on. • We build and manipulate cogni@ve niches so as to unearth addi@onal resources for behavior control. • Human cogni;ve behavior consists in ac@ng upon anchors – the aﬀordances* (*see Gibson, 1977) ‐ which we have secured a cogni@ve func@on to via cogni;ve niche construc;on. (Bardone, 2011)
13. Distributed cogni;on and aﬀordances Learning as a cogni;ve niche Previous ac;on environment as experiences in this digital ecosystem environment Teachers’ goals Learners’ goals and and perceived instruc;ons for ac;on ac;on poten;ali;es A cogni;ve niche Schema adopted from Zhang, J., & Patel, V. L. (2006)
14. Learning aﬀordances and PLE • PLEs are dynamically evolving Ac@vity systems* (*see Engeström, 1987) in which the personal objec@ves and human and material resources are integrated in the course of ac;on. • PLE is also distributed ecologically, integra@ng our minds with the environment (see Zhang & Patel, 2006; Bardone, 2011). Diﬀerent learning goals assume the percep;on of diﬀerent aﬀordances in PLE
15. Aﬀordances as a networked system? • Aﬀordances may constrain each other • Synergy may be arrived from using several aﬀordances simultaneously • Some aﬀordances may need the presence or the co‐ac;va;on of other aﬀordances to be used eﬀec;vely • Using one aﬀordance may actualize another aﬀordance in the network
16. Deﬁning community niches by aﬀordances • People determine the personal learning aﬀordances within their PLEs. • Any individual conceptualizes aﬀordances personally, but the range of similar learning aﬀordance conceptualiza;ons visualizes community’s preferences – a community learning niche
17. Aﬀordances in a community
18. The learning niches • Adapta;on ‐ the adjustment of an organism to its environment in the process by which it enhances ﬁtness to its niche • The forma;on of learning niches in open learning ecosystems appears through accumula;ng learning aﬀordances from PLEs (Pata, 2009). • The community’s aﬀordances may be interpreted and used by each learner to best adapt to the community niche for certain goal‐based ac;on
19. Earlier models that use aﬀordances in learning design Learner’s role is passive, design is created by the teacher. Learning environment not dynamically evolving. Kirschner et al. (2004)
20. Why meta‐design approach? • The ecological Meta‐Design framework applies for open learning ecosystems that are adap;ve and dynamically changing. • Meta‐design is designing the design process for cultures of par;cipa;on – crea;ng technical and social condi;ons for broad par;cipa;on in design ac;vi;es (Fisher et al., 2004). • The meta‐design approach is directed to the forma;on and evolu;on of open learning ecosystems through the end‐user design.
21. Meta‐design approach • The meta‐design approach is known as a methodology for collabora;ve co‐design of social, technical and economic infrastructures in interdisciplinary teams in order to achieve synergy similarly to the symbiosis phenomena in natural environments. • The meta‐design, known from End User Design in computer science, extends the tradi;onal no;on of system development to include users in an ongoing process as co‐designers, not only at design ;me but throughout the en@re existence of the system (Fisher et al., 2004).
22. Meta‐design approaches • Autonomous and self‐organized designers in meta‐design framework can increase the diversity of design solu;ons in the system, allowing diversity and variability to emerge within the ecosystem. • The open, community‐driven, emergent and itera;ve ac;vity sequences in the learning design process models are based on learner contribu;on (Hagen & Robertson, 2009).
24. Ecological principles in meta‐design • Learning in the cultures of par;cipa;on may be characterized as the process in which learner and the system (community, culture) detects and corrects errors in order to ﬁt and be responsive (Fisher et al., 2004). • In this deﬁni;on, learning process is conceptualized as largely self‐organized, adap@ve and dynamic. • It may be assumed that such learning follows the ecological principles
25. Some principles of meta‐design • Both focuses – the learning ecosystem evolu@on by end‐user design, and nourishing the end‐user design process by crea;ng the scaﬀolds for designing (Fisher et al., 2004), are equally important aspects of ecological Meta‐ Design.
26. Suitable The process view to meta‐design in open learning ecosystems (Pata, 2010)
27. Learners’ role • In learning ecosystems autonomous learners con;nuously develop and dynamically change design solu;ons to support their learning. • They incorporate into their personal learning environments diﬀerent Web 2.0 tools, networking partners and ar;facts, and monitor the state of the whole learning ecosystem to adapt their design solu;ons and learning objec;ves to the system and to other learners.
28. Teachers’ role • Providing the teacher‐created scaﬀolds and incen;ves for the learners design ac;vi;es that would foster the accumula;on of learning niches: – a) monitor the evolu;on of the open learning ecosystem, – b) provide learners with the op;ons that enhance and speed up the self‐directed network‐forma;on process (e.g. tags, mashups), – c) analyze the emerging aﬀordances within the learning community, and provide analy;cal guidance for them aiding to make design decisions and selec;ng learning ac;vi;es (e.g. social naviga;on, seman;c naviga;on), and – d) seed learning ac;vi;es into the open learning ecosystem that are based on self‐organiza;on (e.g. swarming).
29. The limita;ons for applying meta‐ design in an open learning ecosystem • There is the need for dynamic accumula@on and monitoring systems for learning niche forma@on to be used by each learner for beneﬁ;ng from par;cular open learning ecosystem and allowing them to par;cipate in the course design – accumulated aﬀordances and their dissipa;on in ;me (community‘s learning niche) – real‐;me awareness of aﬀordances for other learners (their cogni;ve niches)
30. Connec;vity with PLE components (Dippler, Tallinn University development) Distributed course assembling tools (Dippler) Learning contract tools (LeContract, Learning creator (Siadty et a.l, 2011),) User monitoring, accumula;on and visualiza;on Suitable Monitoring tools (EduFeedr (Põldoja & Laanpere, 2009)) The tools to support meta‐design in open learning ecosystems (Pata, 2011)
31. Kai Pata senior researcher, Tallinn University, Ins;tute of Informa;cs, Center for Educa;onal Technology firstname.lastname@example.org, blog hap://;hane.wordpress.com
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