In April 2015, FutureLearn invited people around the world to share their top study tips with us, to create The Crowdsourced Guide to Learning. We asked them why they start and continue to learn; how they organise their study and remember what they’ve learnt; how they learn from and with other people; and what role learning plays in their lives. We received hundreds of tips. Many were motivational, many were organisational and some were simply bizarre. What we learnt is that while there are tried and tested methods for learning effectively, everyone has their own idiosyncrasies and habits that help them achieve their goals. So in this guide, we try to showcase both our favourite tips from learners and expert advice from the academic and online learning community. Wherever you are on your learning journey, we hope you’ll find something to inspire, inform or surprise.
Are there computers in the classroom? Does it matter? Students, Computers and Learning: Making the Connection examines how students’ access to and use of information and communication technology (ICT) devices has evolved in recent years, and explores how education systems and schools are integrating ICT into students’ learning experiences. Based on results from PISA 2012, the report discusses differences in access to and use of ICT – what are collectively known as the “digital divide” – that are related to students’ socio-economic status, gender, geographic location, and the school a child attends. The report highlights the importance of bolstering students’ ability to navigate through digital texts. It also examines the relationship among computer access in schools, computer use in classrooms, and performance in the PISA assessment. As the report makes clear, all students first need to be equipped with basic literacy and numeracy skills so that they can participate fully in the hyper-connected, digitised societies of the 21st century.
Ninety–five propositions for creating more relevant, more caring schools. There is a growing desire to reexamine education and learning. Educators use the phrase “school 2.0” to think about what schools will look like in the future. Moving beyond a basic examination of using technology for classroom instruction, Building School 2.0: How to Create the Schools We Need is a larger discussion of how education, learning, and our physical school spaces can and should change because of the changing nature of our lives brought on by these technologies. Well known for their work in creating Science Leadership Academy (SLA), a technology–rich, collaborative, learner–centric school, founding principal Chris Lehmann and former SLA teacher Zac Chase are uniquely qualified to write about changing how we educate.
The best strategies, they contend, enable networked learning that allows research, creativity, communication, and collaboration to help prepare students to be functional citizens within a modern society. Their model includes discussions of the following key concepts: Technology must be ubiquitous, necessary, and invisible. Classrooms must be learner–centric and use backwards design principles. Good technology can be better than new technology. Teachers must serve as mentors and bring real–world experiences to students. Each section of Building School 2.0 presents a thesis designed to help educators and administrators to examine specific practices in their schools, and to then take their conclusions from theory to practice. Collectively, the theses represent a new vision of school, built off of the best of what has come before us, but with an eye toward a future we cannot fully imagine.
Teaching and Digital Technologies: Big Issues and Critical Questions helps both pre-service and in-service teachers to critically question and evaluate the reasons for using digital technology in the classroom. Unlike other resources that show how to use specific technologies – and quickly become outdated, this text empowers the reader to understand why they should, or should not, use digital technologies, when it is appropriate (or not), and the implications arising from these decisions. The text directly engages with policy, the Australian Curriculum, pedagogy, learning and wider issues of equity, access, generational stereotypes and professional learning. The contributors to the book are notable figures from across a broad range of Australian universities, giving the text a unique relevance to Australian education while retaining its universal appeal. Teaching and Digital Technologies is an essential contemporary resource for early childhood, primary and secondary pre-service and in-service teachers in both local and international education environments.
Creating Internet Intelligence is an interdisciplinary treatise exploring the hypothesis that global computer and communication networks will one day evolve into an autonomous intelligent system, and making specific recommendations as to what engineers and scientists can do today to encourage and shape this evolution. A general theory of intelligent systems is described, based on the author’s previous work; and in this context, the specific notion of Internet intelligence is fleshed out, in its commercial, social, psychological, computer-science, philosophical, and theological aspects. Software engineering work carried out by the author and his team over the last few years, aimed at seeding the emergence of Internet intelligence, is reviewed in some detail, including the Webmind AI Engine, a uniquely powerful Internet-based digital intelligence, and the Webworld platform for peer-to-peer distributed cognition and artificial life. The book should be of interest to computer scientists, philosophers, and social scientists, and more generally to anyone concerned about the nature of the mind, or the evolution of computer and Internet technology and its effect on human life.
The global Higher Educational landscape is in a period of dramatic change. Although it is too early to say whether these changes will be disruptive, revolutionary or merely evolutionary, a significant driver of change has been the dramatic rise in the use and availability of new educational technology. More specifically the growth of the Internet is challenging conventional modes of delivery and helping to extend access to higher education beyond traditional campus-based learners. In recent years, the demand for “online learning”, whether called open, distance, flexible, or e-learning, has grown exponentially in response to this new environment. Likewise, has the rise of opening up education movement, and the growing development with Open Educational Resources (OER) and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC), and the entire unbundling approach in education. Increased internationalisation, widening recruitment and upscaling of reaching students are other drivers. Hence, how, where and when students learn, how institutions structure programmes and services, and how these services are structured are global challenges. Improving quality of student experiences is more than ever extremely important.
This book explores emerging pedagogical perspectives based on the design of new learning spaces supported by digital technologies and brings together some of the best research in this field. The book is divided into three themes: foundations of emerging pedagogies, learning designs for emerging pedagogies and, adaptive and personalized learning. The chapters provide up-to-date information about new pedagogical proposals, and examples for acquiring the requisite skills to both design and support learning opportunities that improve the potential of available technologies.
Thrivability is a novel concept describing the intention to go beyond sustainability, allowing a system to flourish. For a society or organization to be thrivable, educated, responsible acting agents are needed. Traditional education focuses on (efficient) reproduction of existing organised bodies of information. We argue that complex adaptive systems theory and chaos theory provide concepts well suited to inform the design of learning environments, in order to facilitate a thrivable organization. This learning is not linear and externally controlled, but happens in a chaotic, yet guided manner. After discussing the suitability of the theoretical body of these general approaches, we show how a concrete progressive education approach, called the Dalton-Plan pedagogy, implements and supports these elements. By doing so, we show that the Dalton-Plan pedagogy is well suited for education of agents working in and for thrivable organizations. Support for teachers as part of this evolving learning system is provided by an e-learning environment.