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25 years ed tech OLC Keynote

A look at 25 years of ed tech and its significance in the pandemic

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25 years ed tech OLC Keynote

  1. 1. Martin Weller 25 Years of Ed Tech
  2. 2. (Or – I remember when all this was paper…)
  3. 3. (Or – Why knowing some history of ed tech is a good idea in the pandemic)
  4. 4. Book • CC licensed • Free digital • Available: http://www.aupress.ca/index.php/ books/120290 • Visuals - Bryan Mathers
  5. 5. Me • IET at the OU • @mweller • Blog.edtechie.net • OER Hub • Digital scholar • Battle for Open • Open programme director
  6. 6. Outline • Approach & motivation • Three phases and some tech • Some themes • What it means in pandemic • Discussion
  7. 7. Approach • ALT’s 25th year • Choose a tech every year from 1994 • Based on my experience • When they became significant (not invented) • http://blog.edtechie.net/category/ 25yearsedtech/
  8. 8. Limitations • You will hate me because • I didn’t mention your favourite tech • I did mention your specialist area and misrepresented it • I put things in the wrong year • I missed something vitally significant • Not good for longer/abstract themes • Tech focused • Some omissions • But not (just) a nostalgia trip
  9. 9. Why write this book? • To provide a basis for shared understanding and common knowledge • To demonstrate a history of innovation in higher education. • To draw out themes and lessons • To highlight the necessity of a critical approach • To provide an alternative historical narrative to the year zero, disruption based one
  10. 10. Historical amnesia
  11. 11. 2005 Video 2006 Web 2.0 2007 Second Life and Virtual Worlds 2008 E-Portfolios 2009 Twitter and Social Media 2010 Connectivism 2011 Personal Learning Environments 2012 Massive Open Online Courses 2013 Open Textbooks 2014 Learning Analytics 2015 Digital Badges 2016 The Return of Artificial Intelligence 2017 Blockchain 2018 Ed Tech’s Dystopian Turn 1994 Bulletin Board Systems 1995 The Web 1996 Computer-Mediated Communication 1997 Constructivism 1998 Wikis 1999 E-Learning 2000 Learning Objects 2001 E-Learning Standards 2002 The Learning Management System 2003 Blogs 2004 - Open Educational Resources
  12. 12. The optimistic phase
  13. 13. 1995 – the web
  14. 14. Lessons from the web • Good enough always wins out in popularity if you can make it universal • The web gave education the freedom to publish, communicate and share • For distance education which had previously relied on expensive broadcast or shipping physical copies of books, video and CDs, this was a game changer. • It made other unis like the OU and the OU like other unis • The democratisation of the web is what we’re still dealing with today
  15. 15. 1997 - Constructivism
  16. 16. It was everywhere! • Could be an excuse for poor design • Didn’t work well for a lot of disciplines • Significant because it showed educators engaging with technology in a meaningful, conceptual manner • Not just about the tech • Maybe lost some of this experimental approach?
  17. 17. 1998 - Wikis
  18. 18. This would be radical now • Information source. • Student assignment hand-in and review. Students post their assignments when they were ready for grading so students had an opportunity to see one another’s work and even comment upon it • Collaborative Writing. Students were asked to do collaborative writing projects selecting from a range of topics. • Anchored Discussion. An anchored discussion is one based around an initial topic or document. • Project case library. Students were given a space to post their assignments after grading, • Cross-Class Projects. Across different years • Hot List list of pages which were particularly useful or on which there were active discussions. • Choose-Your-Path Adventure Game. students created an adventure game about one of their assignments, • Student Information Pages.
  19. 19. The mainstreaming phase
  20. 20. 2002 - VLEs
  21. 21. VLEs as prime ed tech • The VLE is dead (Weller 2007) – errm • Allowed rapid development quickly • Good enough • Sedimentation process • Balance to be struck between allowing freedom, innovation, and experimentation while maintaining the core functions
  22. 22. 2006 – Web 2.0
  23. 23. Web 2.0 legacy • Challenged how education conducts many of its cherished processes • Filter on the way out, not the way in • Participatory culture • Student generated content • Shift from institutional systems • Open approaches
  24. 24. 2009 - Twitter
  25. 25. Twitter issues for education • Context collapse • Risk/reward of encouraging students/staff online • Duty of care • Data capitalism/Privacy • Reclaiming the space from trolls • Understanding its role • Being part of society
  26. 26. The pessimistic phase
  27. 27. 2012 - MOOCs
  28. 28. The MOOC questions • Is there a sustainable business model? • Who are they good for? • Was the hype good for edtech/open ed? • What can we learn from them as ed tech case study? • When is a MOOC just online learning? • Why did they get attention when OER didn’t?
  29. 29. 2014 – Learning analytics
  30. 30. LA as example of unintended consequences • Scenario – have predictive analytics that are 90% accurate • Good intention: Can help set up support for students who need it • Bad consequence: in post Covid HE finances are restricted, used to exclude students who may not succeed • Data will likely have class, race, previous experience as factor • Should they still release it?
  31. 31. 2018 – ed tech’s dystopian turn
  32. 32. Critical voices are needed • Invasive uses of technologies (Gilliard) • Nefarious social & political uses of ed tech (Watters) • “digital polarization” and algorithmic misinformation (Caulfield) • Responsibility or duty of care • Appropriate skepticism • Develop skills (eg SIFT) • Engage in research and evaluation or practice that counters the dark side of tech
  33. 33. Themes
  34. 34. Some themes • the tech part of ed tech “walks taller.” • Innocence & ‘neutrality’ is no longer valid stance • Recurring ideas & Cycles of interest • The role of humans • Innovation happens • Replace or help educators
  35. 35. In time of pandemic • Ed tech is now very relevant • Lots of ppl will be selling it as a solution • Understanding what has been done before • What has worked • What hasn’t • Why
  36. 36. Example • Blockchain for assessment! • What does it do? • Why not eportfolio? • How does it overcome the problems faced before?
  37. 37. Example • Reusable content • What were the problems with LOs? • How can we overcome them this time? • How best to use OER?
  38. 38. Example • VLE • You already have it • How to move beyond it • The tech isn’t the main thing
  39. 39. Conclusions • There is a long history of ed tech innovation in education • It doesn’t need saving • Understanding this is essential to making good decisions now
  40. 40. Fun stuff! • Book: http://www.aupress.ca/index.php/books/120290 • Timeline, images etc http://edtechie.net/25Years/ • Remix cover https://remixer.visualthinkery.com/a/xrayspecs • Annotate https://bit.ly/25yearsAnnotate
  41. 41. Discussion • Reasoning behind book • Technologies covered • Themes • Pandemic relevance • Your context

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