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The Future of Online Learning Ten Years On

Stephen Downes delivered a presentation about The future of online learning ten years on. I’ve reviewed the slides, but haven’t had time to listen to the audio (personal whining; my laptop, ipod touch, and other such devices were stolen from my car a few weeks ago…so I’m lacking my usual routine for listening to presentations while I travel). Stephen offers an interesting look forward by looking back at predictions he made ten years ago. He was quite accurate on many accounts. He mentions (on slide 49) that personal learning environments will replace learning management systems. I hope this is the case. But I’m not sure. Education is a process with multiple stakeholders with dramatically varying needs. To date, those who are served by the existing architecture of LMS’ have been dominant in getting their interested addressed (administrators, IT). The concept of PLEs raises the profile of learners…but until PLEs are able to include the organizational and administrative needs of other stakeholders, they will continue to be marginal.