Communities of Inquiry and Incorporated Subversion

I have now found a little more time to follow up on my previous post on the So What’s Changed? seminars. I have listened to James Farmer’s podcast in association with his slides. Predictably it was time well spent. He starts by making the bold assertion that we must forget the widely-held view that pedagogy is king and technology plays a subservient role. James postulates that the modern communications technologies, particularly blogs and alternative worlds, play an equally important role with pedagogy in effective learning.

He demolishes quizzes and forums as unimpressive nineties technology that prevent engagement and empowerment of learners. According to James teachers should seek to create communities of inquiry with their cognitive, teaching and social presences with a little touch of incorporated subversion to allow learners to be flexible and experimental in their approach. He goes on to show how this is achieved with blogging, and, as we would expect, he mentions Edublogs as an enabling tool which is based on WordPressMU. eLGG and Drupal also get guernseys.

As a known Blackboard commentator James bemoans its near-monopoly in Australia and agrees with others that it has put back pedagogy by 25 years. He goes on for a few minutes in this vein and ends with the truism that good pedagogy is exactly that whatever the technology. All in all well worth the listen.

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About Michael Rees
Academic in IT interested in Web 2.0 and social media

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