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Higher Education in a Web 2.0 World

November 20th, 2009 · No Comments · web 2.0

Looks like JISC have copied the title of two workshops I am developing for next semester – ‘Researching in Web 2.0 World’ and ‘Learning in a Web 2.0 World’. Never mind. I probably pinched these titles from someone else. The full summary of findings and download of full report can be found at Higher Education in a Web 2.0 World . Highlights that caught my attention are:

Prior experience of students

Using Web 2.0 technologies leads to development of a new sense of communities of interest and networks, and also of a clear notion of boundaries in web space – for example personal space (messages), group space (social networking sites such as Facebook) and publishing space (blogs and social media sites such as YouTube)

There is an area within the boundaries of the so-called group space that could be developed to support learning and teaching

The processes of engaging with Web 2.0 technologies develop a skill set that matches both to views on 21st-century learning skills and to those on 21st-century employability skills – communication, collaboration, creativity, leadership and technology proficiency

Information literacies, including searching, retrieving, critically evaluating information from a range of appropriate sources and also attributing it – represent a significant and growing deficit area

Learner expectation

Imagining technology used for social purposes in a study context presents conceptual difficulties to learners as well as a challenge to their notions of space. They need demonstration, persuasion and room to experiment in this context.

Web 2.0 use in HE

Deployment is in no way systematic and the drive is principally bottom up, coming from the professional interest and enthusiasm of individual members of staff

Key fundamental issue –  the role of the tutor

Tutors are central to development of approaches to learning and teaching in higher education. They have much to keep up with, their subject for example, and developments in their craft – learning and teaching or pedagogy. To practise effectively, they have also to stay attuned to the disposition of their students. This is being changed demonstrably by the nature of the experience of growing up in a digital world. The time would seem to be right seriously and systematically to begin the process of renegotiating the relationship between tutor and student to bring about a situation where each recognises and values the other’s expertise and capability and works together to capitalise on it. This implies drawing students into the development of approaches to teaching and learning. [my emphasis]


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