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This completes the Masters in Open and Distance Education (MAODE)
Taken in addition as continual professional development
Do they do any more or less studying? No more, nor less. Technology enhanced learning today is an iPad, a hundred years ago it was a Biro, a couple of hundred years ago it was the book, before that the Codex, before that papyrus … The problem with an iPad is that it is the entire library, a shed load of tools, a living room of multi-media and a phone, and camera, and games console …
Master of Arts in Open and Distance Education (MA ODE) with the Open University, UK (OU)
This completes the Masters Degree. I graduate on Saturday 27th April 2013
Currently (March 2013) I am taking H809 as a bridge towards doctoral research or professional consultancy. Complete in June 2013.
I joined the #H817open MOOC for one part of this module. I will register for 2014
Try putting any letter from the alphabet in front of ‘learning’ and you’ll be able to say something about it.
It is learning whether you prefix with an ‘e’, ‘m’ or ‘b’ as in – electronic, mobile or blended.
Increasingly the opportunities, particularly with learning on a hand-held computer – 20th century terms for the 21st century smart phone or table – are for ‘a’ or ‘s’ learning – standing for applied or ‘action learning’ that is ‘situated’.
For example, I use a combination of an iPad or Kindle when coaching swimmers – not just for registers, but to show images from a swim drills book.
I am waiting for the wrist or lapel badge computer – an iPad the size of a Nano or ring. Will these come to be known as ‘w’ learning or ‘r’ learning or has ‘e-learning’ become generic? The Google display will be one to watch.
I’ve taken this, from Engestrom and considered this as the interplay between SIX people (or groups) – or a mix of the two. Six people who are bringing to the discussion their different backgrounds and ideas in order to address a topic. At arm’s length, the objects, the ideas, views or knowledge that they have begins to take on an identity of its own.
‘Expansive learning is based on Vygotsky, though three times removed; it implies that we learn within activity pockets as individuals and groups. The interplay between these groups are the consequential objects of learning that in turn transmogrify in the presence of other objects. Solving problems, dealing with contradictions, may come about as these learning systems slide or shift’.
Amyone care to comment?
This is my take on a topic that has taken me through the briar-bush and out the other side. Has the struggle been worth it. The challenge I feel I face when reading papers such is this is how to make the subject matter comprehensible to the non-academic, I challenge I throw down to every academic: it is possible to make yourselves understood by the majority, rather than a minority.
1). What kind of theory of learning is offered by classic activity theory?
A single activity system unit that works upon an object and delivers an outcome
2). What are the five principles of current activity theory? According to Engeström:
- A collective, artifact-mediated and object-orientated activity system, seen in its network relations ot other activity systems, is taken as the prime unit of analysis.
- Multi-voicedness of activity systems. A community of multiple points of view, traditional and interests.
- Age and history
- Contradictions as sources of change and development – accumulating structural tensions within and between activity systems.
- The possibility of expansive transformations.
3). What is the problem with the ‘standard’ theories of learning that expansive learning addresses?
Standard theory equates to lasting behaviour change whereas expansive learning considers a sideways shift of the entire activity system.
created using Art Pad
I was thinking in terms of trying to boil two pans on water on one hob; the flames between the pans cause more conflict than harmony. Shift both pans to the left or right and the heat is under each activity rather than between them.
I’ll get out a pad of paper and try some more of these.
4) What is the criticism that Engeström makes of the apprenticeship model of learning?
Doesn’t permit the development of original thinking. (I disagree. It depends on the person you are apprenticed too. Think of the many great artists who learnt their craft under a great master, then broke loose).
In relation to e-learning or are we calling it technology-enhanced learning here I fully recognise the value of participation, letting go of your thoughts and therefore being one of these ‘activity systems’ so that a shared ‘third object’ (Engestrom, 2001) as it were, moves forward.
The best colloborative work is like this, my experience being those video production, often drama based, that require multiple inputs from people with very different, and specific talents.
I’ve gone on to try and express the Engestrom diagram in 3D, and drawing six activity systems … i.e creating greater complexity to begin getting closer to the highly complex reality and in turn a different diagram/illustration entirely.
Engeström (2001) article, Expansive learning at work: toward an activity theoretical reconceptualisation