Does the 18th century German philosopher G W F Hegel have something to offer to e-learning design?


This arrived from Amazon this morning – about 24 hours and 35 seconds slower than a Kindle version had it been available. How did I get here on a Masters course in Open and Distance Learning?

The formation of consciousness interests me.

I indulge my mind. I let it take me on a journey of its choosing. I will never limit myself to the course as designed and resourced for some imagination, some ‘persona’ of whom I may or may not be the ‘type’.

Hegel, and this book in particular, came up recently – a reference.

I have, potentially, more than the book but the mind of the world’s leading Hegel scholar to tap into when I get stuck (as I will). Long retired from Hegel, his books in a library in Poland, my 85 year old father in law did nonetheless quote Hegel over coffee on Wednesday as I drove onwards to the far less inspiring World of Learming at Birmingham’s NEC.

That no man is a valley as he is unable to correctly percieve the nature of a valley.
The thought that dry flowers are no longer flowers.
The similarity between following the news and being religious.
And something in relation to our conception of History.

See, the mind already boggles, which is what intrigues me, this process of going from clueless to comprehending. This is how – to my mind, learning and the desire to learn is triggered – you set the synapses trembling.

The subjective mind
The objective mind
The absolute mind

Not just ‘who are we?’ But ‘how we are so?’

Whether this will help me design interactive health and safety e-learning for the operatives of a nuclear power plant is another matter.

Late in the day for me but Hegel did wonders for PPE students in the past by teaching them how to think and express complex ideas accurately and succinctly – which is perhaps precisely what is required as a nuclear power station goes up in smoke and you wonder what you are supposed to do.

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