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13 Learning Theories for e-learning

Every bit of you contributes to your learning experience

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When it comes to learning, everything matters – epecially the tips of your toes.

‘Human learning is the combination of processes throughout a lifetime whereby the whole person – body (genetic, physical and biological) and mind (knowledge, skills, attitudes, values, emotions, beliefs and senses) – experiences social situations, the perceived content of which is then transformed cognitively, emotively or practically (or through any combination) and integrated into the individual person’s biography resulting in a continually changing (or more experienced) person’. Knud Illiris (2009:24)

In 1980 I worked the winter season in a Hotel in the French Alps. It was a 13 hour working day that started at 6.00am and included three hours off over lunch – 12h00 to 15h00. That’s when I went skiing – in all weather. That season, like this, had an abundance of ‘weather’ with more snow than even Val d’Isere could cope with. An avalanche took out an entire mountain restaurant … or rather burried them. They were fine and re-opened after a few weeks. Towards the end of the season I would shot up the slopes, in my M&S suit, with a plasticated boiler-suit like thing over it and skied the same run maybe 11 or 12 times before returning to the hotel and an afternoon/evening of carrying bags, digging cars out, taking trays of food, cleaning and translating French to English for the Hotel Manager. I had a Sony Walkman cassette player. I played Pink Floyd ‘The Wall’ and skied to ‘The Wall’.

33 years on, using the same skis if I want, the music on an iPhone, I manage three to five turns at a time … rest … three to five more turns … rest … three to five turns and take a suck on my Ventolin inhaler …. and so on.

And what comes to mind?

‘The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire’ Gibbon and Alexis de Tocqueville ‘L’Ancien Régime et la Révolution’ – both required reading before I started my undergraduate year of History later in 1981.

These are the games the brains plays on you. I can now of course recall Madame Raymond, the Hotel Manger, The Sofitel, Val d’Isere and Christian, the waiter who taught me to ski … and the word for dust ‘poussiere’.

And while up here 33 years later I have so far got through three books:

‘The A to Z of Learning Theory’ (2002), David Leonard; ‘Contemporary Perspectives in E-learning Research’ eds. Grainne Conole and Martin Oliver and ‘Contemporary Theories of Learning’ edited by Knud Illeris (2009) … from which I drew the above quote. The first covers some 150 learning theories – by the time you’ve finished it you may conclude that there is life and learning while death brings it to the end. As Illiris states, everything counts. The second is one of those academic compillations of papers. The title is disengenious as I could not find in ONE single paper (chapter) any attempts to give a perspective on e-learning research, rather these are papers on e-learning. Period. While the Knud Illiris edited book does the business with some great chapters from him, from Etienne Wenger and Yrjo Engestrom. So one is the K-Tel compilation from Woolworths, while the latter is ‘Now E-Learning’.

As it is still snowing I may have to download another book.

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Contemporary theories of learning. MAODE Students – All the Hs: H810, H807, H800, H808 …

Enlightened and loving the MAODE, but always keen to have a book on the side that I can read, take notes on, think about and share. This, I have come to understand, is largely because I was taught (or indoctrinated) to learn this way – books, notes, essay, exam.

Though never sharing – learning used to be such a secretive affair I thought.

How The OU has turned me inside out – the content of my mind is yours if you want it, and where we find difference or similarity let’s bounce around some ideas to reinvent our own knowledge.

As I read this in eBook form on an iPad I add notes electronically on the page, or reading it on a Kndle I take notes on the iPad – I even take notes on paper to write up later. I highlight. I also share choice quotes on Twitter @JJ27VV. Which in turn, aggregates the key ideas that I can then cut and paste here, with comments that others may add.

Simply sharing ideas in a web 2.0 21st Century Way!

‘If we were to look at the whole of contemporary culture in the West as a kind of school and consider adult roles as courses in which we are enrolled, most adults have a full and demanding schedule.

 

‘If we were to look at the whole of contemporary culture in the West as a kind of school and consider adult roles as courses in which we are enrolled, most adults have a full and demanding schedule’. (Kegan, 2011:39)

Chapter 3 ‘What “form” transformations? A constructive-developmental approach to transformative learning. Robert Kegan. An abridged version of a chapter that appeared in Jack Mezirow et al. in ‘Learning as Transformation’ (2000). In ‘Contemporary Theories of Learning’ (2009) Knud Illeris.

Piaget (1954) Assimilative or accommodative processes?

  • Understand your students so that you don’t presuppose anything.
  • Learning for knowledge and skills, everyone will be challenge to improve the repertoire of their skills.
  • Not what I want to teach, but what, after assessment, they need to learn. No longer a flexible peg jumping through an institutional, departmental, academic or LD designed module, but a flexible peg and an accommodating hole.

No two people can possibly be learning the same thing, no matter what common assessment students undertake – the student with a disability, or disabilities, whatever these are and how they affect or impact on this individual – will be acquiring knowledge or a skill that has or is in some way transformed or translated, the focus diluted or pinpointed through a note–taker, reduced range, voice of an audio–reader, missing a lecture or seeing it from only one perspective, access denied or field or lsb work excluded through their choices, risk assessment, health and safety, time, money, people and other such barriers – though sometimes enhanced if a live debate becomes an asynchronous forum or verbatim transcripts of audio and provided to all.

What is the disabled person’s frame of reference?

  • Each learner’s experience of learning and their relationship with the subject. (Kegan, 2011:45)
  • Where the learner is coming from as well as where they are hoping to go in order to bridge the two – this applies to all learners whatever their circumstances.
  • Where the bridge metaphor is week is to visualise the physical person in transit rather than a myriad of billions of complex bridging actions occurring between neurones in the learner’s brain. (Kegan, 2011:47) So a spidergram might be better, showing how close to a goal the learner is.jv
  • Not just knowing more, but knowing differently. (Ronald Heifetz, 1995)

Mezirow (2000) Transfer of authority from educator to learner. How rapidly will this transformational shift occur, which is a function of how far along they are on a particular bridge.

  • How do define a adult, self–directed learner?
  • Skill, style, self–confidence.
  • BJ defined by what he can do – read Latin and ride a bike, not by what he cannot do, brush his hair or swim.
  • JM defined by what he cannot do – get up in the morning or speak in anything shorter than a paragraph, rather than what he can do, swim the Channel and empathise with others.

Hegel, the phemonology of mind.

(From Wikepedia) I’ll form my own opinion once I’ve read the book and picked the mind of Dr Zbigniew Pelczynski (my father-in-law and Hegelian scholar)

Hegel attempts to outline the fundamental nature and conditions of human knowledge in these first three chapters. He asserts that the mind does not immediately grasp the objects in the world, concurring with Kant, who said that knowledge is not knowledge of “things-in-themselves,” or of pure inputs from the senses. A long-standing debate raged in philosophy between those who believed that “matter” was the most important part of knowledge and those who privileged “mind.” Rationalists, such as Descartes (and before him, Plato), believed that we can only trust the truths that the mind arrives at on its own, while Empiricists, such as Locke, argued that all of our knowledge comes from our perceptions of actual objects, through our senses. Kant had sought to put this debate to rest by arguing that the meaning of objects derives from ideas, or “concepts,” that stand between mind and matter. The information entering the mind via the senses is always “mediated” by concepts. In the first part of the Phenomenology, Hegel demonstrates that though concepts do in fact mediate matter, as Kant maintains, Hegel’s own understanding of the way concepts come into being implies a certain instability or insecurity in knowledge, which Kant overlooks.

REFERENCE

Illeris, K (2011) Contemporary Theories of Learning

Kegan, R 

 

What if, for example, we define, say Boris Johnson by what he can do – read Latin, ride a bicycle through traffic and play whiff-whaff, not by what he cannot do, say brush his hair or swim 1000m Frontcrawl.

 

'If we were to look at the whole of contemporary culture in the West culture as 
a kind of school and consider adult roles as courses in which we are enrolled, 
most adults have a full and demanding schedule'. Kegan (2006:39)

Piaget (1954) Assimilative or accommodative processes?

Understand your students so that you don't presuppose anything.

Learning for knowledge and skills, everyone will be challenge to improve the 
repertoire of their skills.

Not what I want to teach, but what, after assessment, they need to learn. No 
longer a flexible peg jumping through an institutional, departmental, academic 
or LD designed module, but a flexible peg and an accommodating hole.

No two people can possibly be learning the same thing, no matter what common 
assessment students undertake – the student with a disability, or disabilities, 
whatever these are and how they affect or impact on this individual – will be 
acquiring knowledge or a skill that has or is in some way transformed or 
translated, the focus diluted or pinpointed through a note–taker, reduced range, 
voice of an audio–reader, missing a lecture or seeing it from only one 
perspective, access denied or field or lab work excluded through their choices, 
risk assessment, health and safety, time, money, people and other such barriers 
– though sometimes enhanced if a live debate becomes an asynchronous forum or 
verbatim transcripts of audio and provided to all.

What is the disabled person's frame of reference?

Each learner's experience of learning and their relationship with the subject.  Kegan (2006:45)

Where the learner is coming from as well as where they are hoping to go in order 
to bridge the two – this applies to all learners whatever their circumstances.

Where the bridge metaphor is week is to visualise the physical person in transit 
rather than a myriad of billions of complex bridging actions occurring between 
neurones in the learner's brain. (Kegan, 2006:47) So a spidergram might be better, showing how 
close to a goal the learner is.

Not just knowing more, but knowing differently. (Ronald Heifetz, 1995)

Mezirow (2000) Transfer of authority from educator to learner. How rapidly will 
this transformational shift occur, which is a function of how far along they are 
on a particular bridge.

How do define an adult, self–directed learner?

Skill, style, self–confidence.

What if, for example, we define, say Boris Johnson by what he can do – read Latin, ride a bicycle through traffic and play whiff-whaff, not by what he cannot 
do, say brush his hair or swim 1000m Frontcrawl.

While what if I define X by what he cannot do – say, get up in the morning or speak in anything 
shorter than a paragraph, rather than what he can do, swim the Channel and 
empathise with others.

Need to read: Hegel, The phemonology of mind. 

This is why:

Hegel attempts to outline the fundamental nature and conditions of human 
knowledge in these first three chapters. He asserts that the mind does not 
immediately grasp the objects in the world, concurring with Kant, who said that 
knowledge is not knowledge of “things-in-themselves,” or of pure inputs from the 
senses. A long-standing debate raged in philosophy between those who believed 
that “matter” was the most important part of knowledge and those who privileged 
“mind.” 

REFERENCE
Kegan, R (2006) 'What "form" transformstions? A constructive-developmental approach 
to transformative learning. An abrdidged version of a chapter that 
appeared in Jack Mezirow et al. in 'Learning as Transformation' (2000). In 
'Contemporary Theories of Learning' (2009) Knud Illeris.

Mezirow, J. (2000) "Learning to think like an adult - Core concepts of Transformational Theory." IN J.Mezirow and Associates: Learning as Transformaton: Critical Perspectives on a Theory in Progress. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2000.

Piaget, J. (1954) The Construction of Reality in the Child. New York: Basic Books.

 

 

MAODE Students – All the Hs: H810, H807, H800, H808 …

Enlightened and loving the MAODE, but always keen to have a book on the side that I can read, take notes on, think about and share. This, I have come to understand, is largely because I was taught (or indoctrinated) to learn this way – books, notes, essay, exam.

Though never sharing – learning used to be such a secretive affair I thought.

How The OU has turned me inside out – the content of my mind is yours if you want it, and where we find difference or similarity let’s bounce around some ideas to reinvent our own knowledge.

As I read this in eBook form on an iPad I add notes electronically on the page, or reading it on a Kindle I take notes on the iPad – I even take notes on paper to write up later. I highlight. I also share choice quotes on Twitter @JJ27VV. Which in turn, aggregates the key ideas that I can then cut and paste here, with comments that others may add.

Simply sharing ideas in a web 2.0 21st Century Way!

A comprehensive understanding of human learning.

A comprehensive understanding of human learning.

Knud Illeris

Behavourist, cognitive and social learning all part of the mix.

Mental schemes and engrams – the mind is rarely an empty vessel.

Cummulative learning, like a PIN code.

Assimilative learning (Piaget) As in school (traditionally and currrent).

Accommodative learning (Piaget) Zone of proximal development (Vygotsky)

Signative, expansive, transitional and ultimately transformative … St.Paul on the road to Damascus

Non-learning cased by death or resistance – resistance to learning caused by the psychological trauma of significant and sudden change such as redundancy or death of a close loved one. (2009:16)
Intelligence – cognitive, social and emotional.

An operational description of learning.

Personal and cognitive development (Piaget, 1929) (Erikson, 1963)

Body and mind relationship

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