Posts Tagged ‘Social Media’

School adoption strategy for Digital Media

In a recent article Ewan McIntosh described how they got edubuzz to such a success in the UK. He describes an adoption strategy for social media in learning from a change management perspective. He shares some valuable insights that are hardly new, but often overlooked. The most important one; leaders in education should take initiative and leadership in actually using social media. In his view it is not enough to have a bottom up approach.

If I see another conference entitled “21st Century Learning”, I might weep

His 7 advices (somewhat adapted to make sense in an abbreviated format):

  1. Find your vision (an actionable one that sets you apart from other learning institutions)
  2. Avoid the pilot project (just do it!)
  3. Find your tribe (locally)
  4. Give something for nothing (and allow time to make it grow)
  5. Create a community of practice (and provide adequate support)
  6. Take local partnerships online
  7. Top down support is vital (and lead by reminding)

McIntosh’s view ties in very well with our observation that the implementation of social media still hinges on individual enthousiasts. Institution-wide adoption is scarce. It will remain so, unless leaders in education rethink their vision and strategies and lead by example.


Ownership of the learningprocess in Communities of Practice

As been told in the weblog of Gerlinde we spent quit a time discussing about informal and formal learning. Can Communities Of Practice be build into a formal learning situation? For example in a curriculum of a highschool, in a way to direct the learning process of the students. I am triggered by some things Etienne Wenger said on this subject.

Etienne made clear that in a Community of Practice (COP):

  • people meet as learning partners
  • learning partners in the COP have the ownership of their own learningproces


So, when you organize COP’s in a school in order to achieve certain learninggoals by students, the students no longer are the owner of their learningproces. In stead of this you try from outside this community to direct their learningproces. 

There is a difference in using ‘social media’ and ‘COP’.  Referring to the thoughts above I think the last cannot be used in a formal learning process to achieve predetermined learning goals. But maybe some other kind of using social media can be formalized in a curriculum.

On the other hand, when you organize COP’s in a formal learning situation, you let students experience a new way of learning which they can benefit from the rest of their learning life.

Is learning by using social media always informal learning?

March 17, 2010 1 comment

One of the topics that constantly passed in our discussions during the learningwave was the difference between formal and informal learning.  Is social learning always informal learning or is learning in a classroom always formal learning? Is it obviously that in a Community of Practice the learning is informal learning? Many examples passed our minds and it became clear that there are different definitions possible for formal and informal learning. But presuming that informal learning does not have a predefined result of what has to be learned is learning by using social media always informal learning? I don’t think so. For example twitter. I heard many of my collegaes telling that they have a twitteraccount to follow some specific people to gather information on a easy way. The information is coming to them instead of that they have to search on the internet for hours to find such information. So they have a predefined goal in mind why they use twitter.

Stephen Downes on Social Learning

Stephen Downes just published the audio-version of our conversation.

Conversation with a group in Holland about recent developments in social learning. I focused mostly on the idea that the intent of social learning is to generate practice and experience with idea of growing or developing personal capacity (as opposed to learning as the ‘transfer’ of knowledge). We also talked quite a bit about the use of social networks and communities as a mechanism for evaluating learning. Participants were: Eline Noorberger, David Berg, Gerlinde Podt, Christine Marck-Apperloo, Jan Nieuweboer. (Keynote)

We’re off to LearningWave2010!

We are really excited! Tomorrow we will kick off our first-ever LearningWave gathering. For two days we will immerse ourselves in Technology Enhanced Learning. All participants will bring their own perspectives, making it an ideal place to learn.

We are really pleased that we may welcome four very distinguished guests:

  • Etienne Wenger, THE authority on communities of practice
  • Stephen Downes, THE authority on constructionism
  • Pløn Verhagen, Professor Emeritus on Instructional Design
  • Wilfred Rubens, THE blogger on TE-Learning in the Netherlands

In true TE-style, they will be joining us from all over the world in virtual Storytelling sessions.

Keep posted for regular updates and news!