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  1. 1. “E-learning Futures : Speculations for a time yet to come”<br />John G. Hedb<br />8/14/2010<br />ESTHER JOY DE ASIS<br />1<br />
  2. 2. The rest of this paper will examine ideas and strategies that confront Fraser’s claim and which might result in amore effective match between e-learning pedagogies, the affordances of the technologies and the motivation of learners as they achieve effective e-learning outcomes.<br />8/14/2010<br />2<br />
  3. 3. In fact, it requires a careful process of ensuring collaboration between teachers and experts, gaining successful experience in teaching with the technologies and participating in a community that provides continuous support.<br />8/14/2010<br />3<br />
  4. 4. Certainly, many instructors have never used e-learning strategies in their student role nor have they had training in, or previous experience of, teaching with e-learning strategies. The rapidly changing context in which e-learning is occurring makes the challenge for these teachers just that little bit harder.<br />8/14/2010<br />4<br />
  5. 5. Obstacles to integrating ICT in the classroom (Vrasidas & Glass, 2005, p. 8)<br />The conservative nature of the traditional culture of schooling and classroom instruction.<br />Teachers’ resistance to changing their traditional teaching approaches.<br />Lack of time for teachers to learn how to use and integrate ICT in their teaching.<br />Lack of technology infrastructure.<br />Lack of specific technologies that address the specific needs of teachers and students.<br />8/14/2010<br />5<br />
  6. 6. Lack of ongoing support.<br />Lack of release time and incentives for teacher innovators.<br />Incompatibility of traditional teaching with the constructivist framework fostered by ICT.<br />Need for teachers to unlearn traditional teaching beliefs and practices.<br />Need to prepare teachers to integrate ICT by integrating ICT in teacher preparation programmes.<br />Need for policy, curriculum and assessment reform.<br />8/14/2010<br />6<br />
  7. 7. How should we select e-learning technologies to make a major difference in most teaching and learning contexts when most of the instances are not radical shifts in approach?<br />8/14/2010<br />7<br />
  8. 8. Clayton Christensen (1997) proposed the idea of disruptive innovations.<br />He claimed that a disruptive innovation or technology is one that eventually takes over the existing dominant technology in the market, despite the fact that the disruptive technology is both radically different from the leading technology and that it often initially performs less successfully than the leading technology according to existing measures of performance, but over time the functionality or the attributes of the new way of doing things replace the older technologies.<br />8/14/2010<br />8<br />
  9. 9. The rise of the educational audiovisual movement was supported by the advent of cheap and accessible methods of capturing views of the world and situating challenges and learning in real-world contexts through the use of the photographic image. Then, in the second half of last century, we had a potentially disruptive technology in the Polaroid film process.<br />8/14/2010<br />9<br />
  10. 10. The recording processes moved from analogue to digital recording mechanisms, suddenly the storage of images in a visually recognizable form was no longer required; they could be deconstructed, manipulated and retrieved at will.<br />8/14/2010<br />10<br />
  11. 11. The digital images could also be transmitted with excellent quality<br />anywhere in the world to be reconstructed to the same quality as was sent. Thus<br />digital photographic technologies became disruptive technologies<br />8/14/2010<br />11<br />
  12. 12. To search for the e-learning analogy<br />While curriculum managers may have initially seen e-learning as a potentially<br />disruptive innovation, it does not seem to have replaced the dominant paradigms.<br />e-Learning has enabled the curriculum of the educational institution to be more<br />efficiently recorded and transmitted to learners in many different contexts.<br />8/14/2010<br />12<br />
  13. 13. It has enabled every institution to become a potential distance learning provider and it has encouraged many students and teachers to change the meeting times and places that they use on a daily basis.<br />Today students who still meet in formal classes will ask for many aspects of their course to be provided online so that they can access them while managing a complex work and study schedule.<br />8/14/2010<br />13<br />
  14. 14. Early in the use of e-learning technologies there was student resistance to employing any online elements, butmore recently in her survey Alexander (2005) found that students valued:<br />access to information*<br /><ul><li>knowing you could pre-read or catch up;</li></ul>2. asking questions*<br /><ul><li> asking ‘dumb’ questions without embarrassment and ‘seeing’ what other questions people were asking;</li></ul>8/14/2010<br />14<br />
  15. 15. 3. benchmarking and comparing*<br /><ul><li>comparing your interpretations and products with others and understanding assessment demands and rubrics;</li></ul>4. time and place flexibility*<br /><ul><li>being able to juggle work, family and study, reducing long commuting times and maximizing the time spent on each activity and at what place that time would be spent.</li></ul>8/14/2010<br />15<br />
  16. 16. Most students still claim that it takes significant time to undertake online studies. (In fact, most good online facilitators also claim it takes more time to provide feedback and support online and to move students into effective online learning techniques.)<br />However, even for this disadvantage there are positive elements. Many students report, for example, that if they are studying in a language that is not their first language the recorded nature of many of the interactions ensures that they are able to keep up and understand with reference to dictionaries and mutually supportive self-help groups.<br />8/14/2010<br />16<br />
  17. 17. However, the move into e-learning has not been without casualties. In spite of recognizing that there are advantages for teachers and students, several institutions have pulled out of offering courses.<br />The closure of the UK eUniversitiesWorldwide (UKeU) follows the earlier failure of such schemes in the USA, where the low numbers of enrolled students indicate that this is not always what the majority of students seek for their university education.<br />When reporting on the closure of the UKeUthe funding body stated that universities favored a blended approach ‘involving a mixture of IT, traditional, work-based and distance learning to meet the diverse needs of students’ (Higher Education Funding Council for England, 2004).<br />8/14/2010<br />17<br />
  18. 18. Here it is important not to equate each technology employed in educational processes as operating in similar functional ways in each of its contexts of use.<br />First, we need to be sensitive to the potential affordances of each technology and not simplistically classify their role as learning with text or image, which is a popular definition of multimedia learning (Mayer, 2005, p. 2).<br />8/14/2010<br />18<br />
  19. 19. Second, we need to explore the complexity and time demands of the task of integrating a particular strategy or tool into a teaching programme. <br />Third, we need to be aware of the organizational aspects of the institutions that are offering the learning experience.<br />8/14/2010<br />19<br />
  20. 20. Tools to support e-learning<br />At present e-learning seems to be an amalgamation of various web technologies that replicate the strategies available in the face-to-face classroom. Metaphors through which these components of e-learning create similar relationships to face-to-face contexts include discussion forums, online assessment and textbooks.<br />8/14/2010<br />20<br />
  21. 21. However, at the tool level the technology affords much more than the elements available to the individual classroom teacher. For instance, in terms of display and representation of ideas the technology has enabled visual and aural information display within software packages.<br />It is now possible to collect data from the field and represent that data in a graph or animated display that explains the ideas visually and succinctly.<br />In fact, Jonassen (1996) has emphasized the role of technologies in supporting the thinking processes of learners, an approach termed cognitive tools or mindtools.<br />8/14/2010<br />21<br />
  22. 22. Bereiter and Scardamalia (2005) suggested what A we need is a ‘dialogic literacy’where:<br />In every kind of knowledge-based, progressive organization, new knowledge and new directions are forged through dialogue. . . . The dialogue in Knowledge Age organizations is not principally concerned with narrative, exposition, argument, and persuasion (the stand-bys of traditional rhetoric) but with solving problems and developing new ideas. (Bereiter & Scardamalia, 2005)<br />8/14/2010<br />22<br />
  23. 23. So what should be part of a more disruptive e-learning?<br />While many tools can be used as part of the representational framing of ideas, if they are to support a pedagogical structure they often need to be mixed with other components.<br />8/14/2010<br />23<br />
  24. 24. For digital repositories to be considered a disruptive pedagogical innovation theircapabilities and affordances need to be reviewed.<br />They have the potential to support learners in the construction of their own knowledge. <br />They afford the capacity for personalized project management and for the collection of resources from more than one source, requiring comparisons and contrasting to ensure that the information found meets the learning goal.<br />8/14/2010<br />24<br />
  25. 25. There were several IT literacy issues;students did not validate the information that they had retrieved from the web or therepository<br />This means that the way the resources and information were presented did not raise any issue of veracity or interpretation concerns for the students.<br />Thus, when designing learning activities there is a need to demand more conflicting but reasonable information in the task.<br />8/14/2010<br />25<br />
  26. 26. There was also evidence that most of the groups were able to employ multimodality in the construction of their learning artifacts.<br />8/14/2010<br />26<br />
  27. 27. students are tasked with the exploration of the resources by themselves, the understanding of the structure of the information, its modes of representation and methods for assuring the quality and appropriateness are not trivial skills, even for well-developed discipline knowledge specialists.<br />8/14/2010<br />27<br />
  28. 28. Learning objects as potentially disruptive<br />Other potential successful shifts from sustaining pedagogies to disruptive pedagogies might also exist in terms of learning objects.<br />8/14/2010<br />28<br />
  29. 29. However, as mentioned previously, the commonly used objects at this time are often linked more closely to topics within a syllabus, making them less useable in different contexts. Interestingly, while learning object repositories have been developed in several countries, their usage is not as common as might be expected.<br />8/14/2010<br />29<br />
  30. 30. Without exploring the range of reasons, the lack of use appears related to the type of objects being hared. Most are content dependent and contain elements that can only be used to teach a specific topic and ‘fit’ into the context for which it was devised. Learning objects represent the increasing modularization of individual elements that can be retrieved from databases and employed in a number of different learning contexts<br />8/14/2010<br />30<br />
  31. 31. To create pedagogical experiences that make a significant impact on either teacher or learner it would seem that potentially disruptive pedagogical options need to be adopted.<br />8/14/2010<br />31<br />
  32. 32. This would be likelyto result in:<br />a shift from content management systems (LMS) to digital repositories;<br />2. a shift from learning objects (with content embedded) to learning activities that are shareable pedagogical sequences without content;<br />8/14/2010<br />32<br />
  33. 33. 3. a shift from information delivery to more interaction support, thus enabling the social construction of meaningful knowledge;<br />4. a shift in focus from assessment of the end product to assessment of the learning journey, through keeping portfolios of en route products that indicate changes in understanding and reflection;<br />8/14/2010<br />33<br />
  34. 34. 5. a shift from a focus on facts and principles to a focus on benchmarking of performance against many other examples, either within the class or between similar groups.<br />8/14/2010<br />34<br />
  35. 35. What do we need to add for disruption<br />The announcement of a merger by BlackBoard and Web CT (BlackBoard, 2005) has started many educators rethinking how educational institutions should approach their e-learning strategies and how they support links between and among students and teachers.<br />8/14/2010<br />35<br />
  36. 36. It becomes a time in which new options in technology use might include open source software as an alternative to provide a less expensive learning management software environment or the rethinking of course design so that investment in one propriety system does not prohibit a later move or switch to another that offers a better pedagogical match.<br />8/14/2010<br />36<br />
  37. 37. However, a better consideration might be not to overlay the decision with changes in the technology options, but rather to explore the match between pedagogy, tool And motivation to examine why the learner might commit more time and energy to learning. Several authors have suggested that strategies such as games and three dimensional virtual worlds might provide more disruptive pedagogical strategies (Barabet al., 2005).<br />8/14/2010<br />37<br />
  38. 38. It is acknowledged that these environments do increase the motivation of the participants. The options for learners to construct their own spaces raises further challenges to perform at higher cognitive levels (Lim et al., 2006).<br />8/14/2010<br />38<br />
  39. 39. In speaking on the topic of technology and engaged learning, Metros (2003) suggested the additional element of engagement. She argued that for students to become engaged with their learning, e-learning should be redesigned to move them through three processes: transfer of ideas, translation of ideas and transcending ideas. She defined these as involving the following.<br />8/14/2010<br />39<br />
  40. 40. Transfer. Transfer conventional instructional tools, strategies, communication and delivery to a technology-enhanced learning environment.<br />Translate. Redefine and shift conventional instructional tools, strategies, communication and delivery to the technology-enhanced learning environment. <br />Transcend. Go beyond conventional instructional tools, strategies, communication and delivery to invent new paradigms for teaching and learning.<br />8/14/2010<br />40<br />
  41. 41. 8/14/2010<br />41<br />
  42. 42. 8/14/2010<br />42<br />