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Posted by on Apr 10, 2014

Notes for our Mobile Learning in the Open paper at Networked Learning 2014

Our response is to emphasize the human in all of this. We emphasize trust, discussion, collage. Trust is critical. Trust in ourselves as learners and teachers that we will find significance in our daily lives. Trust fuels discussion, a search for feedback and negotiated meaning. Discussion leads or is supported by collage, stitching meaning over the environment and media. A simple, human approach to build learning activities from.

Our response is to emphasize the human in all of this. We emphasize trust, discussion, collage. Trust is critical. Trust in ourselves as learners and teachers that we will find significance in our daily lives. Trust fuels discussion, a search for feedback and negotiated meaning. Discussion leads or is supported by collage, stitching meaning over the environment and media. A simple, human approach to build learning activities from.

Pekka and I recently presented at Networked Learning Conference 2014 in Edinburgh. The paper is titled Mobile Learning Field Activities: a Pedagogy of Simultaneity to Support Learning in the Open. Our goal in this and subsequent papers is to make the case for generating new or altered pedagogies to support instruction in the open places of life outside the confines of the classroom (or even formal disciplinary instruction). Pekka and I will be recording this and uploading it to YouTube and Slideshare in the coming weeks, but in the interim I wanted to present the images along with some textual description.

The basic sequence is the elements of open learning (time, place, social presence), the continuum of activities through them (important step), and pedagogical approaches to making use of that environment. The big takeaways from this (which several of the questions at the conference reinforced or alerted us to) are that

  1. From our evidence and experience, mobile learning seems to emerge primarily from informal spaces
  2. Hence, pedagogical approaches to mobile learning in the open should embrace that emergence and model activity based on that.
  3. However, this does not mean that there is some grand chasm between informal and formal learning in mobile. We haven’t found any evidence for that in our work. Our participants (in workshops or in observations) have routinely moved between informal and formal spaces without any conscious sense of impediment.
  4. In keeping with the approaches of the Manifesto for Teaching Online and extending them into mobile spaces, we believe that the pedagogy most appropriate for this environment is the one that emerges from it. In short, the best mobile learning is born mobile. We can find connections on the peripheries to formal instruction, but it shouldn’t start there. Even in field sciences, the rigidity is in the process, not the pedagogy. Scientists are comfortable with the serendipity of just finding something. We should all begin from a place where we are open to the sheer possibility of finding something and working from there.

The Elements of Open Learning: Time, Place, Social Presence

Continuum #1: Intentionality & Serendipity

Continuum #2: Informal and Formal

Continuum #3: Initiative, Seduction, and Sense of Intervals

Pedagogical Response

Please note that several of these slides are from Pekka’s own hand-drawn images and several more are from my sister, Jennifer Gallagher, from a project we did earlier. The rest are my own manipulated images.

Tweets as Feedback

 

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