The eLearning 2.0 Survival Guide - Assessing the Credibility of Web Sources
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The eLearning 2.0 Survival Guide - Assessing the Credibility of Web Sources

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I delivered a presentation on The eLearning 2.0 Survival Guide – Assessing the Credibility of Web Sources at the Brandon Hall Innovations in Learning 2008 conference which was held in San Jose, ...

I delivered a presentation on The eLearning 2.0 Survival Guide – Assessing the Credibility of Web Sources at the Brandon Hall Innovations in Learning 2008 conference which was held in San Jose, September 2008.

Presentation Summary

It is no surprise that integrating Web 2.0 tools to learning is an innovative practice that is catching on quickly. Pushing the Web’s potential for democratizing information, Web 2.0 social computing practices are well aligned with constructivist learning strategies. Enabling learners to develop multiple perspectives can foster analytical and critical thinking.

What is worrisome is the transition from a spoon-fed model of education to a self-discovery and self-directed model without reconfiguring the approach to learning. Are individuals applying fact-checking rigour to the content they access? What criteria are they using? What do they consider to be expert knowledge? Are they simply looking for other sources to confirm what they’ve found or are they actually analysing the source of the information? Are they aware that information, correct and otherwise, spreads like memes on Web?

My presentation was largely be based on research I have done for my M.A. in Educational Technology thesis which is a qualitative study of people who write blogs on training to be used in the professional development of people who work in the field. The question lies in the authority and credibility of these blogs, and by extension Web content in general.

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The eLearning 2.0 Survival Guide - Assessing the Credibility of Web Sources The eLearning 2.0 Survival Guide - Assessing the Credibility of Web Sources Presentation Transcript

  • Innovations in Learning 2008 Brandon Hall Conference Assessing the Credibility of Web Sources The eLearning 2.0 Survival Guide Kristina Schneider, M.A. Educational Technology Director of Blended Learning Strategies, Documedia Inc.
  • Assess a Web Source Assess a Web Source Find an online source that you go to regularly and assess that source according to the following criteria: 1. Identify whether or not you find it to be a credible source and why/why not 2. Identify whether or not the author writes with authorityy Write down the name of the source on a piece of paper to be collected collected.
  • How Do You Assess Content Sources? How Do You Assess Content Sources? Your trusted Your criteria for sources? ? new sources? ? Common craft Seems credible S dibl Wikipedia Referenced by people who New York Times you trust MSN.com Tested theories presented by site it Google Content appearing in other Caesar Milan sources View slide
  • What is Credibility? What is Credibility? • Can be verified by an objective What is credibility? source ( i h (without a stake) k ) How can you tell if • Pragmatism as a sign, both sides of a source is the coin credible? • By referencing, especially outside How does one gain network credibility? y • Citing other sources corroboration sources, View slide
  • What is Authority? What is Authority? How does • Vested in stakeholders, might come authority differ from position as opposed to from credibility? credibility from reputation How can you tell if • Clarity, confidence and differentiate a source is written from arrogance, fact-based fact based with authority? How does one gain • Deep knowledge of a topic, recognition by others, new insights, authority? y connect the dots between sources
  • Integrating Web 2 0 Tools to Learning Integrating Web 2.0 Tools to Learning Can foster Democratizes analytical and information critical thinking Aligned with Enables constructivist multiple principles perspectives
  • Transition of the Way of Thinking Transition of the Way of Thinking spoon-fed model of a self-discovery education and self-directed d lf di t d model without reconfiguring the approach to llearning ih fi i h h i
  • Kristina Schneider Kristina Schneider M A Ed Tech M.A Ed Tech M.A. Thesis on the 10 years authority & d i designer & dibilit credibility consultant of bloggers in blended & their Educational Ed i l learning blogs Technologist
  • Background of the Problem Background of the Problem A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development Research questions • Who are the bloggers in the field? That is, what motivates them to blog and what qualifications do they believe they bring to the task? • What is their purpose in blogging? That is, what do they hope to accomplish? What influence do they hope to achieve, if any? hi ? • What do professionals in the educational technology who choose to blog choose to write about? g • How do they select the content to report? How do they verify the content, if at all? • What evidence do the bloggers have of their influence?
  • Literature Review Literature Review A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development Key Themes Key Discoveries Forms of • 3 types: structured, semi-structured or informal Training T i i (Herrington t l 2003; Herrington, Herrington, Kervin, Ferry, (H i t et al., 2003 H i t H i t K i & F Professional 2006; Wenger, McDermott, & Snyder, 2002) Development • requires self-directed participants • is about sharing of experiences Social • allows for enables co-creation of knowledge (Boyd, 2001) Computing for p g • facilitates the linking of theory to practice (Laurillard, 1999) Professional • enables reflective interaction (Rovai, 2000) Development • promotes development of critical thinking skills (Greenlaw and DeLoach, DeLoach 2003) Early Social • discussion boards, LISTSERVs, BBS Computing • promoted exchange and support Applications
  • Literature Review Literature Review A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development Key Themes Key Discoveries Early Social • discussion boards, LISTSERVs, BBS C Computing ti • promoted exchange and support Applications Emerging Body • focused on edublogger practices and communities (Crainer, 2002; of Literature on Downs et al., 2002; Coates, 2003) Blogs • concern about major media publishers (Coates, 2003) • blogging as journalism—no editorial filters means potential of gg g j p increased credibility (Lasica, 2002; Grabowicz, 2003) • 4 types of posts - opinion, vote, reaction, summation (Coates, 2003)) Credibility of • reliability of Web-based information / credibility is given by the Blogs reader (perception/popularity) (Flanagin and Metzger, 2007) • 4 types of credibility: presumed, reputed surface, experienced presumed reputed, surface (Constantinides and Swenson, 2000)
  • Research Methodology Research Methodology A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development looking for Phenomenological emic pp approach perspective artifact interviews Mixed data analysis l with h collection methods of the blogs bloggers grounded open coding Data analysis theory case studies technique methodology Trustworthiness frame triangulation data audit a c e b ty and credibility te v ew interview o ata of data
  • Summary of the Findings Summary of the Findings A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development Categories How Consequences Origin of blogging for · Opportunities to · Exploration th edublogger the d bl t h d document, share and d ·E i t ti Experimentation promote content and ideas. · Innovation · Openness to explore, innovate experiment with innovate, software and the Web Motivation to blog · Share and promote and · Sharing d today / Purpose P exchange on content and h d Feedback · F db k ideas · Promotion · Manage content (archiving · Content management and indexing) · Need to explore, innovate, experiment · Need for feedback
  • Summary of the Findings Summary of the Findings A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development Categories How Consequences Qualification to Blog / · Self-qualified as bloggers on As a content expert: Bl about a T i Blog b t Topic bj t a subject Work-experience ·W k i · Maintaining and posting · Formal graduate education regularly to a blog · Informal As a edublogger: · Earned by blogging regularly Influence the · Generating new ideas, · Readers d bl edublogger hopes to h i conversations and contacts d ·R f References achieve · Recognition for their · Recognition contribution · Credibility
  • Summary of the Findings Summary of the Findings A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development Categories How Consequences Topic / Content · Reacting with an opinion on · Personal / professional l ti selection ti area of expertise f l blurred realms bl d · Reflection on topics related · Reaction / Reflection to their area of expertise · Expertise (requires more elaboration) · Sharing opinion / perception · Need to dialogue / for feedback Use of text and media · Illustrative uses of media · Illustration (mainly photos, images and · Information logos) not always justified · Communication · Informative uses adds information to the post
  • Summary of the Findings Summary of the Findings A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development Categories How Consequences Content verification · They check for form but · Opinions not necessarily content t il t t ·R f References · Links · Desire for a certain non- quantified degree of polished form / writing Evidence of influence · Quantitative – number of · Quantitative comments or trackbacks kb k ·R f Reference within the i hi h · Quantitative – number of edublogger community links back reported by search engines · No qualitative – rankings about appreciation of contribution contribution.
  • Summary of the Conclusions Summary of the Conclusions A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development • edubloggers share: benefits of the public exchange • edubloggers explore: discovery P t it of Portrait f process and learning • edubloggers self-promote: an seriousness devotion, authority seriousness, devotion edublogger • edubloggers develop: learn through blogging • edubloggers perceive: offer their perceptions and wait for feedback
  • Summary of the Conclusions Summary of the Conclusions A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development • edubloggers discuss: generate new ideas, conversations and contacts • edubloggers juxtapose: text/media, resources, resources ideas P t it of Portrait f • edubloggers reference: but they do an not verify • edubloggers quantify: awareness of edublogger traffic and contribution to blog • edubloggers support one another: comment on and refer to each other’s blogs
  • Suggestions for Further Research Suggestions for Further Research A Qualitative Study of Five Authors of Five Blogs on Training and Development • Qualitative study: cannot generalize findings Limitations of the • Throughout the study, new Web tools Study emerged • Blogger Evolution and Self-Directed Learning Emerging • Gender and Social Media Questions and • Reader Participation and Contribution Recommendations R d ti • Q lit ti Assessment of Bl C t t Qualitative A t f Blog Content for Future Study • Responsibility to Verify Facts • Value Judgments about Media and Copyright
  • What Needs to Change? What Needs to Change? The notion of credibility or authority? Read/write joint responsibility? Looking for qualitative measurement as opposed to just quantitative
  • Re‐Assess a Web Source Re Assess a Web Source Randomly select one of the sources noted by another participant (ensure it is not the same as the one you originally assessed) and assess that source according to the following criteria: 1. Identify whether or not you find it to be a credible source and why/why not 2. Identify whether or not the author writes with authority