Learning Design: mapping the landscape


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Our era is distinguished by the wealth of open and readily available information, and the accelerated evolution of social, mobile and creative technologies. These offer learners and educators unprecedented opportunities, but also entail increasingly complex challenges. Consequently, the role of educators needs to shift from distributors of knowledge to designers for learning. Educators may still provide access to information, but now they also need to carefully craft the conditions for learners to enquire, explore, analyse, synthesise and collaboratively construct their knowledge from the variety of sources available to them. The call for such a repositioning of educators is heard from leaders in the field of TEL and resonates well with the growing culture of design-based research in Education. Yet, it is still struggling to find a foothold in educational practice.

In October 2011, the Art and Science of Learning Design (ASLD) workshop was convened in London, UK, to explore the tools, methods, and frameworks available for practitioners and researchers invested in designing for learning, and to articulate the challenges in this emerging domain. The workshop adopted an unconventional design, whereby contributions were shared online beforehand, and the event itself was dedicated to synergy and synthesis. This paper presents an overview of the emerging themes identified at the ASLD workshop, and guides the reader through further reading of the workshop outcomes. First, we introduce the topic of Learning Design, and the themes we will be considering. We present and compare some common definitions of Learning Design, and clarifying its links to the related but distinctly different field of Instructional Design. We then explore its relevance and value to educators, content and technology developers, and researchers, examining some of the current issues and challenges. We present an overview of the workshop contributions, relating them to the key thematic strands of Learning Design, and conclude with three significant challenges to be explored in future research.

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Learning Design: mapping the landscape

  1. 1. Learning Design: mapping the landscapeYishay Mor, Brock Craft ALT-C, Sept. 2012
  2. 2. The 30sec version• Learning design - the solution to world hunger.• We had a great workshop in London last October.• All the workshop contributions are available at ld-grid.org/workshops/ASLD11• Our review / summary paper is at researchinlearningtechnology.net/index.php/rlt/article/view/19196/html
  3. 3. So, what shall we talk about?• What is this Learning Design thing you mention?• Why should I bother?• What are the big issues?• Where do I go from here?
  4. 4. Learning Design is..Learning Designhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Learning http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DesignAcquiring new, or the creation ofmodifying existing, a plan or conventionknowledge, behaviors, for the construction of anskills, values, or object or a system.Preferences. May involvesynthesizing different typesof information.
  5. 5. Learning – is..• A computer program is said to learn from experience E with respect to some class of tasks T and performance measure P, if its performance at tasks in T, as measured by P, improves with experience E. Tom M. Mitchell, 1997
  6. 6. Learning := Acquiring new, or modifying existing, knowledge, behaviors, skills, values, or preferences. May involve synthesizing different types of information.A computer program is said to Making meaningslearn from experience E with (references, connections,respect to some class of tasks constructs) fromtext (systems ofT and performance measure P, signs) in context (material,if its performance at tasks in T, social)as measured by P, improveswith experience E. (Lemke; Kress; others)Tom M. Mitchell, 1997
  7. 7. Learning: what?• About – Physiology, anatomy, pharmacy• To do – Diagnose, treat, monitor• To be – A medical doctor, nurse, paramedic
  8. 8. Learning: how?• From – Teachers, More capable peers (MCPs), Books..• With – Self, peers, MCPs...• By – Reading, Reciting, Attending, Practising, Doing, Making, Designing..
  9. 9. Design :=the creation of a plan or convention for the construction of an object or a system. everyone designs who devises courses of action aimed at changing existing situations into desired ones (Simon, 1969) Objects with intent Bad design is.. just letting things happen. John Hockenberry (ted.com) Conversation with the materials of a situation Donald Schon a mutual learning process between users and designers Pascal Béguin
  10. 10. Craft = making stuff Design = making stuff betterChange • Value drivenin context • Change oriented • Functionally organised Changin • Context dependent context • Representation sensitive (Luckin) • Iterative • Responsive Objects that • Creative change practice • Deliberate • Social
  11. 11. Utility, firmness, delight (Utilitas, firmitas, venustas) - Vitruvius*• Utility – Functional, existing states → desired• Firmness – Deliberate – Laurillard: teachers as design scientists – Design inquiry• Delight – Are we having fun? *: HT Mike Sharples
  12. 12. Why bother?Education is..• Knowledge transmission• Behaviour modulationor -• Designed learning:Creating the opportunities for learners to achieve their objectives in a complex, dynamic, challenging environment.
  13. 13. Learning Design :=The deliberate creative practice of devising new practices, plans of activity, resources and tools aimed at achieving particular educational aims in a given situation.
  14. 14. the issues• Representations – capturing context, imagining change – musical score, architectural drawing, LD … ?• Methods – Firmness, taming complexity• Practices – Teachers as learning designers, learners as designers of own learning.• Tools – For all of the above
  15. 15. Need ...• Design for learning design• A design science of learning design
  16. 16. Next stops• The Learning Design Grid www.ld-grid.org• OLDS MOOC www.olds.ac.uk• ARV Workshopld-grid.org/workshops/design-inquiry2013• Participatory Pattern Workshops talk altc2012.alt.ac.uk/talks/28096• H817: Openness and innovation in eLearning www3.open.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/ course/h817.htm
  17. 17. Thank You Yishay Mor, Yishay.Mor@open.ac.uk yishaymor.org Brock Craft thatbrock@gmail.com brockcraft.comslideshare.net/yish/alt-casld-14246450