Thursday, 26 November 2009

Educational Values in a Digital Age

I came across this fascinating blog post from e-learning specialist Steve Wheeler, who works at the University of Plymouth.

His presentation to a group of final year trainee teachers makes for timely reflection. What are we teaching our students? How can they be prepared for a future dominated by digital technology and knowledge economies?

I've embedded Steve's presentation below, but it needs to be read in conjunction with his blog post, in order to make the fullest sense. You can find it here.

As an adjunct to Steve's observations my colleague Britta Bohlinger has written a timely post, looking at the ways in which employers might glean more meaningful data about prospective employees, using the Web as a research tool. You can find her blog here.


britta bohlinger said...

Thanks for making this available - and for the friendly link to my post. I like the discussion around values, it opens up a whole range of questions in the global context as we constantly have to review our notion of universality, which reminds us that little exists outside socially constructed realities in certain time-space configurations. Carefully avoiding the slide into relativism here, though.

Sacha van Straten said...

Indeed. The philosophy behind what education IS and what it should DO are coming back to the fore.

We see debates emerging regarding the value and purpose of education, which I find both fascinating and essential.

Too often, there's little chance to reflect on what teachers' ambition and end game should be; yet these are unlikely to remain fixed perspectives, but are more likely to become mutable over time.

The emergence of the Web and its attendant applications is speeding up the process by which educationalists can frame the changing nature of the job.

I agree that the bigger picture can become lost in the welter of paperwork and government directives.

It seems to me that the social constructivist approach offers a wide range of flexible solutions to meet the current needs. And it will be interesting to see if that maxim holds true as the Web develops and matures, perhaps giving schools a chance to catch up?

britta bohlinger said...

Yes, that sounds convincing. As schools are getting chance to catch up, the [still pseudo] global nature of the web will hopefully enable them to embrace and harness the power of the amateur educationalist crowd. I hope and wish it will move towards negotiated best practice rather than power struggles.