Topic 1 – Some Reflections

After looking at the first topic and working through the scenario, it definitely emphasised the importance for a person to be adaptable and open to learning with technology. Embracing Savin Baden’s (2014) concept of “liquid learning” …learning and knowledge that is always on the move.

I enjoyed looking at the resources for this topic, especially the video on the visitor/resident and personal/intuitional model by David S. White and Alison Le Cornu.

This week in class, we had a discussion about how much time students spend gaming. As a fun exercise we looked at the one students steam account (Steam is a gaming website/platform that delivers a range of games straight to a computer’s desktop). It also calculates the number of hours a user is engaged in different games on the site. The student is 19 years old, 2nd year computer science major. Doing some basic calculations we determined that the student had spent 4.5% of his life, so far, gaming on the site Steam.  His motivation to engage as a resident had surprisingly occupied almost 5% of his life so far.

How can we transfer this motivation into the educational realm? How do we use technology to do so? Do we use gamification? Do we research Virtual Reality education with more vigour? How do we develop 21st century skills? What are fundamental 21st century skills? Will sophisticated algorithms used for educational software create a “think less, find more basis”?

I agree with Kek and Huijser (2015) “We need to recognise that changes are inevitable, and respect that these changes are here to stay, some evolutionary, some revolutionary, and we need to respond, but respond in adaptive and agile ways, and importantly, with imagination and creativity.” Moreover that connected learning is realized when a person is able to pursue a personal interest. But how do we respond? What are the best environment(s), intervention(s), for a person to pursue their personal interests?

These issues call for a pertinent question to be asked: how would technologists, instructional designers, learning scientists incorporate pedagogic fundamentals in an e-learning environment? I am hoping that by doing the ONL162 course some of these questions will begin to be answered.

On an end note, all of this research should be to establish and promote a healthy connection between teacher, learner and their subject of interest.  A passage by Kek and Huijser (2015) resonated with me,  “Our purpose in higher education is to develop meaningful participation and engagement between students and ourselves – teachers, administrators, professional staff – and the ‘world’, and vice versa. No longer are we just facilitating students so that they can perform (qualification), but we must also ensure that they are being socialised (socialisation) into a ‘way-of-being’ (subjectification) that includes attributes and skills to take risks, to reason critically, to reflect, to be resourceful, and to be autonomous – qualities of lifelong learners – which will allow them to work and live productively in a world of uncertainties.”


David White: Visitors and residents (part 1)

David White: Visitors and residents – Credibility (part 2)


Kek, M.  & Huijser, H. (2015). 21st century skills: problem based learning and the University of the Future. Paper Third 21st Century Academic Forum Conference, Harvard, Boston, USA.

Developing digital literacies (2014) JISC guide.

Savin-Baden, M., (2014) Problem-based learning: New constellations for the 21stCentury. Journal of Excellence in College Teaching  25 (3/4)  197-219  Preprint Savin-Baden JECT (3)

Savin-Baden, M. & Wilkie, K. (2006) The challenge of using problem-based learning online. In: Problem-based learning online. Maidenhead: Open University Press.

White, D. & Le Cornu, A. (2011) Visitors and residents: A new typology for online engagement. First Monday, 16(9).


One thought on “Topic 1 – Some Reflections

  1. Hi Brendan,
    What a fantastic blog! I enjoyed reading your views on game-based learning and lifelong-learners. I think that these approaches will help the students understand that learning for the shake of learning is a rewording experience. Thanks for the post and for the references!


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