12 January 2013
I’ve posted in Google Groups Open Discussion reacting to the line of discussion «Introduction to learning design» regarding the Prezi of Yishar Mor.
One of the transcripts in the Prezi is from an article of Educause and regards «disruptive curriculum» that raises the question whether it is reasonable to keep focus on formal curriculum, when most of the learning is built in informal contexts and with all that Internet offers us.
The controversy about the role of institutions is not new and important movements have tried to change the focus of learning on the needs of students and citizens. The Internet turned this movement more global.
However, from a pedagogical point of view we must recognize that many thinkers and practitioners have set revolutionary principles many decades ago. I can’t think of more disruptive approaches to learning than those of A.S. Neill (Summerhill is a miracle of survival), or Freinet’s principles and school values of his pedagogical code (30 Invariants). Freinet would practice «la classe promenade».
And still go back to Ferrer y Guardia right at the beginning of the XX century with the foundation of modern school aiming to breed free thinkers, where both boys and girls would learn together, rejecting exams, awards or punishments, opening school to social and working dynamics, active learning in contact with nature.
Sometimes I get the feeling when we argue in defence of such principles how slow things change and how ahead of the mainstream these extraordinary men and women were.
Watching an intervention of Mitch Resnick , he showed the didactic tools that Froeble (XIX century) used in his «kindergarten», learning based on tactile manipulation. Maria Montessori pedagogy has a similar approach.
In Yishar’s Prezi there’s another transcript about HE curriculum (curriculumreform.org). From my point of view Academia seems even more resistant to change than other education levels. Professors are more reluctant to leave the stage. I think the dsruptive effect is more abrupt in HE because the target public are adults with access to all kind of information that can be searched in the Internet. Learning is no longer a content issue, information is no longer property of a few enlightened and priviledged brains.
MOOCs are a wonderful opportunity for people who wish to learn, and for people who cannot afford expensive tuitions. Institutions will have to reorganize and rething their role. I believe that more and more people will engage in learning all over the world and institutions still have «a market» to keep their budgets afloat.
The Prezi also goes through the concepts of «instructional design» and «design for learning». The cycle for learning design that OLDS MOOC follows is (i) initiate; (ii) investigate/inquire; (iii) ideate; (iv)connect; (v)prototype; (vi) curate; evaluate; (vii) reflect.
I would like to address another concept, that of inclusion and «universal design for learning», as a «set of principles for curriculum development that give all individuals equal opportunities to learn», providing multiple means of representation, multiple means of action and expression and multiple means of engagement – http://www.udlcenter.org/research/researchevidence.