eLearning .....? I've had E-Nough!!

This is my version of the whole episode of e-learning .. specifically the LEARNING part and what the 'e' is all about ..


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Wednesday, February 20, 2008
The paradigm shift
By golly, time waits for no man (or woman ..) .. been almost two weeks since I last posted. Up to my eyeballs with datelines ... anyway, the saga continues ...

We have kind of tackled technological innovations and its effects on our educational endeavours .. and how we get all excited in keeping up with what next lurk in the corner .. with Hawthorne effect in tow .. and after all the fanfare of launches and pilot projects and a few published papers ... we are back to usual grind....

There are institutions that has taken into the integration of technology in a big way, medium way and perhaps .. no way ..

Those who are willing to commit, put in the bucks, human resource and time will be on their way. Those who want to get of the ground but are buying the cheapest stuff, and asking too few people to do so many things and not putting the right people on the job, are struggling to make an impression, painfully. There are those who are trying to get something from NOTHING, I wish you all the best!!

Shift we must ..even the sand on the shore shift with every stroke of the wave ..

The student are the direct recipient of the changes wrought in by the technological revolution. I can still remember sitting on the floor in my primary school days listening to a music lesson on the radio. Our children or students these days are bombarded with gizmos of the electronic kind, with cyber cafes and interactive technology (such as the Atari and Nintendo) in the living room. Our children have been raised in a world of instant access to knowledge and information, a word of automation and remote controls and simulation capabilities to stimulate the mind.

Although schools are embedded in this technological culture, the education system is largely unchanged. Given the exposure the children experienced in their daily life has resulted in an estrangement of the schools from society, and from the children who live in it. They are caught in an awkward bind as they move toward the future, but the institutions responsible for educating them are locked in the past. In contrast with the technological innovation they are exposed to in the home and society, schools strike them as rigid, uninteresting and ultimately alienating - This was what I said in my Keynote address in Bahrain in 2001 ... it may be different now ... is it really ...

Technology notwithstanding, what has shifted .. Dwyer (1994) talked about the deconstruction of traditional pedagogies, viz,















Facts & Rote Learning

Active Collaborator


Passive Listener

Critical Thinking


Accumulation & Retention of Facts

Transformation of Facts/ Ideas


Drill & Practice

Collaboration & Interactivity


Has anything shifted?... seriously!! ... let's do an honest audit of the above parameters and see whether any shift has occurred. I have five children, of which 2 are still in school. The eldest is already working, the second in university and the third is still waiting for her SPM results. I have seen them go to school and the things they had to do .. and I DARE SAY IT IS STILL THE SAME AS WHEN I WAS IN SCHOOL .. with the exception of using the computer to re-type the frikking text book .. I always say to them, buy another book or photocopy the bloody book and give it to the teacher .. dang what pedagogy is that??

There is a lot of hype of what the computer can do .. we know what the capable of being 'told' to do .. what WHO is telling it?? Who is using it to its fullest capacity, the wonderful multimedia computing waiting to be exploit !!! Let us be honest .. we kind of compile ALL the new tools that is up and coming .. man we are still struggling with **** power point!!

Look, if we are going to build a house, we need tools, definitely, specific tools for specific jobs, special tools, custom made tools, imported tools, or perhaps we have to invent a new one because whatever is available is not good enough to do the job! Basically, ONE tool cannot perform all the necessary building functions ..

Now, change that house to a classroom with 30 students, say .. we keep talking about personal preferences, learning styles and different cognitive levels, bla..bla..bla.. please put your hand on your heart and tell me you know the learning styles and preferences of all the students in your classroom ..Hands up!!

What has shifted .. only the computer has shifted INTO our lives .. we have not shifted any education system .. we will talking abut this 10 years down the road .. same old story .. The Malaysian Smart School is already 10, yes 10 years old .. any impact ... ??Any report of any impact . I have not seen any .. have you .. anyone ??

I am not worried at all about the deluge of new tools .. as I always say in my talks, we hve more technology than we know how to use .. Please do not make the mistake of equating tools and pedagogy .. as if it is one and the same .. a tool is just a tool, it is how it is used and for what purpose makes it a technology ..

[Taken verbatim from: The Intangible Economy] - According to Tom Friedman, The World is Flat. Friedman means that advances in telecommunications and globalization have leveled the playing field so that anyone came compete with anyone else - Indian programmers with Silicon Valley computer jocks; Chinese fashion designers with New York's garment district.

Not so, claims Richard Florida. In forthcoming piece in the Atlantic Monthly - complete with fancy graphics - Florida argues that The World is Spiky.

By almost any measure the international economic landscape is not at all flat. On the contrary, our world is amazingly "spiky." In terms of both sheer economic horsepower and cutting-edge innovation, surprisingly few regions truly matter in today's global economy. What's more, the tallest peaks- the cities and regions that drive the world economy - are growing ever higher, while the valleys mostly languish.

Look at the Spiky world map on Richard Florida's site. Very intriguing and the Econ map ....

Spiky could be more accurate .. just look at the two photos ... 'nuff said ..

posted by Rozhan @ 2/20/2008 01:18:00 AM  
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