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H807 – Evaluation of information ecology (A13.3)

May 4, 2011

Below are some questions for consideration.

  • Who is the audience for your chosen learning environment?
    I think the main audience are students and teachers, but also by families with children (although not the youngest) and those people who are interested in Jefferson’s domestic life, house or gardens.
  • What ‘tools’ are employed to engage learners?
    interactive maps, info boxes  and videos are offered, but also tours and a search option and help function.
  • What role does each component play in developing discovery or transformational learning?
    I think the interactive maps foster discovery, and the possibility to freely navigate, however, the page is still relative static and allows not really much interactivity. It enables only individual learning, but no collaboration with others.
  • Is there support for multi-channel communication?
    There is no communication channel at all, or I must have missed it. There is no option to contact those responsible, no guest book or other option to leave a comment, and no other interactivity.
  • Is there support for porting content and communication across platforms, contexts and devices?
    I haven’t explored any possibility for a transfer.
  • What are the specific instances and opportunities for engaging with interactive mobile technologies in support of informal learning?
    I assume with a broadband mobile phone you could walk around the house and explore the plantation, receiving all the information you need when entering a new room or a special area within the garden. However, learning is passive, there is no activity where you could do something on your own. Combining e.g. with geocaching would be an option to bring some activity into learning.

I think the main strength of the theory, like mentioned before is the great emphasis on values, to put the heart into work, as well as head and hand, a principle for good care. However, I am not sure if this is a somehow a too optimistic thinking, as we all know that in reality this is unfortunately not often achieved, at least in my experience, there are not open  discussions, individuals try to protect their grounds and agreement in one topic is seldom reached, except when it comes to coffee breaks 😉

Nevertheless, the examples provided in the chapters, e.g. the discussion about providing the newsletter via emails, which seemed first hand an effective, easy way that would save paper costs, etc, but within the discussion between the school administration, parents and students, they came to the conclusion that email is not the best solution. Despite their diversity in opinions, they agreed on one on a non-technologist solution, but came to a mutual solution after considering the pros and cons of email and that email would greatly restrict the children to access the newsletter.

Well, regarding the limitations of this theory, I am not quite sure – the results you can achieve, at least those I achieved, seems quite generic. How does it help when I identify people, practice, values and technologies, respectively diversity, locality, co-evolution and keystone species. Identification is not enough, like the authors state we need to go beyond, using why questions and only how questions. Thus, asking e.g. why does that not work.

Well, I am not sure if I ask the right questions and voice the correct answers. What do others think?

From → H807

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