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Category Archives: Uncategorized

MOOCs: Expectations and Reality

In spite of (because of?) significant media attention, the dialogue around MOOCs has been more theoretical than informed. Research is lagging well behind rhetoric. Fortunately, that is starting to change. Fiona Hollands and Devayani Tirthali from Teachers College, Columbia University, have released what is the most informed analysis of MOOCs that I have read to [...]

Personal Learner Knowledge Graph

The entire education system is focused on content/curriculum. Content drives almost all academic conversations. Content is the work of designers (how should we structure this), academics (what and how should I teach), administrators (how can we prove [to some random agency] that we taught students stuff that matters), and employers (this is the content I [...]

Multiple pathways: Blending xMOOCs & cMOOCs

I’m running a MOOC on edX in fall on Data Analytics & Learning (registration will be open soon). As part of this process, we organized a designjam recently bringing together 20 or so folks to think through the design process. I’ll post separately on this event. For now, I just want to highlight one aspect [...]

Journal of Learning Analytics

Interest in learning analytics is growing. It’s a data centric world and will only become more so in the future. From my biased view, it is critical that educators are aware of the role of analytics in education because of the heaving influence algorithms, data, and analytics have on teaching, learning, and decision making in [...]

Thoughts on Connectivism

Stephen Downes has posted some thoughts on connectivism. David Wiley replies, saying while interesting, connectivism is incomplete (which I think is great – if it’s complete, we can stop working on it). In 2008, I posted a short presentation on the various ways in which learning is networked: neural, conceptual, and external. The defining attribute [...]

Open Learning Analytics

The future of systems such as business, government, and education will be data centric. Historically, humanity has made sense of the world through discourse, dialogue, artifacts, myth, story, and metaphor. While those sensemaking approaches won’t disappear, they will be augmented by data and analytics. Educators often find analytics frustrating. After all, how can you analyze [...]

What will universities monetize in the future?

Universities do more than teach. Research is one of the most important activities of higher education. From the lens of students and society, however, the teaching and learning process and what it costs, is the primary focus. The university economic and operational structure, in relation to educating learners, can be seen as consisting of three [...]

University of Texas at Arlington

This is likely not news to most readers as it has been posted in various blogs, forums, and announced at the MOOC Research conference in December, but I have applied, and received approval, for a leave of absence from Athabasca University to establish and set up a digital learning research lab at University of Texas [...]

The challenge of coherence

I’ve been thinking about coherence formation in the learning process for many years (it was a key topic of my phd). Traditionally, coherence of knowledge is formed by the educator through her selection of readings and lectures. The assumption underpinning learning design is something like “decide what’s important and then decide how to best teach [...]

The vulnerability of learning

In a meeting with a group of doctoral students last week, one individual shared her challenging, even emotionally draining, experience in taking her first doctoral course. Much of her experience was not focused on the learning or content. Instead, she shared her self-doubts, her frustrations of integrating doctoral studies into her personal and professional life, [...]