If life is what happens to our plans, then dance is what happens to our steps.
ideas sometimes when you wait they come to you.

Preparation for starting with BAPP

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Ownership and Personal Revolutions

Here are some thoughts about ownership. I think that there is a different kind of ownership when working on the web as we are doing in this course. By ownership I mean feeling like you belong or are involved. (Part of my Research interest is in how experiential learning is valued.) The course sets up a number of tasks for you to engage in doing. We are hoping you will learn from the experience. You would do this by reflecting on the experience of the task and adding that to other experiences you have (particularly in your Professional Practise) in order to widen your knowledge.

When you are in a traditional classroom-setting you feel that ownership, that is feeling you are a part of it all, seems to be held in the teachers hands. You go to the teacher and develop a relationship with them, with the other students and with the activities themselves and you see yourself fitting in. As this happens you start to take ownership of the experience from the teachers hands into your own.  Its like when you first go to a place you feel everyone around you in that place must know what is going on, you give ownership to the people around you (like Alice in Wonderland). But when you keep returning to a place you become familiar with it and you start to feel you know what's going on more than the people around you. In more traditional Distant Learning there is the image of someone somewhere receiving your mailed in work. There still seems to be a place that is the central hub as it were of which you are on a long string from. It was as if everyone on the course is on long strings all connected to the hub. (This is why some people feel the campus sessions are useful. "put a face to a name", "put a place to a string".) But we have changed this dynamic through the set-up of this course.

By having a course like this using blogs we changed this central hub. In the classroom example above the students connect but under the eye of the teacher, in the distance example the students are single extensions from the teacher (although they might bump into each other like tethered balloons). In both examples the teacher can be used as a central owner of the knowledge, the sense of belonging, the feeling of being a part of things.

Many social scientist have pointed out how knowledge ownership can be used as power, as can communication be used as power. We at BAPP are aware of how the internet has an impact on the teacher holding the knowledge, the ownership because of the simple fact you can go look-up (x) on the internet. We feel that this is a dynamic shift in knowledge and in power. The connections that the internet gives across people regardless of place and authority has massive implications. It is making history at this moment in the Middle-east. It is a shift in the rhetoric of Power of knowledge and connection

The way we are using the blogs and web 2.0 is a part of a shift in power and a shift in ownership. Your own personal revolution is dealing with that. The ownership of this course is not in the hands of the teachers. (Which we think it never truly was in the classroom setting either) It is just out there and you need to grab it for yourself. It is not in someone else's blog who looks like they know what they are doing. It is not in waiting until people arrive in your life that make it seem more interesting, like getting a job. It is not taken away from you by anyone, people asking you to work, being too busy. Ownership, being a part of the course is in You. (We have tried to say that the task experiences can be put with whatever you are doing in your day-to-day professional life so there is no need to wait for something.)

We feel that being aware of this ownership is a big part of what we all learnt as we became professional workers. We feel it is a lesson in professional practice as much as it is a lesson in the changes the internet brings. In fact it is a lesson that goes beyond the internet. The internet just exemplifies it. You do not have to be all over the blogs to engage with a core lesson which is you do not need permission to blossom, if you make a mistake you can survive, (just try to be kind to yourself and others), you just need to own your own engagement.

People in 3002 are getting into Reflection task by now and 3835 are getting into Ethical thinking tasks. These things are about you. You need to own the tasks. You need to decide to move through the tasks 'get on with it'. Do not get caught-up with the tools. Blogging about blogging or blogging to be heard saying something can be a distraction. Blog to engage further with the thinking you are doing.
What are you finding? What interests you? How do you own your learning?

This is what I think. What do you think?


Wednesday, 16 February 2011

What's going on / what was 3002?

Think of the blogs like a campus. If we were all on campus we would meet and chat. You might listen to a lecture or chat to a friend to learn more about the course. But we are all around the world so we have the blogs instead. When you put things on your blog people will visit and chat about what you said, likewise you should go to other peoples blogs and comment. At first all we are doing is taking stock of how the Web 2.0 works and what role it plays in our lives already. We (the tutors) feel Web 2.0 is an important tool in Professional practise today. 

Follow the tasks in the module handbook. Each one is an activity that will give you an experience. We want you to think about (reflect on) the experiences. Think about them in terms of your normal working week too. See if any of the task activities affect, help resonate with your normal professional practises. At the end of the module we will be asking you to summarise what you have learnt from doing the task activities. We will ask you to point us to the places and conversations (blogs) where you learnt something. The biggest thing is to get going with the blog and visiting other people. 

Hey, old 3002ers can you make any comments. Does that sound like what you did last session or is it more complicated, or easier that I make it sound? How are you all doing new 3002ers?

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Welcome back

Hi Guys
I hope you had a good winter break and welcome to the new 3002 people. I am going to be posting things and sometimes they will be more relevant to 3002 and sometimes to 3865 BUT the point is I hope they will be informative in general and we want to comment and talk across the course so please read them all. If its super boring to do with one module I will mark it '3002 only' or something. But even then you old 3002's comments would be great and /or maybe it will make you twig something that you missed last term.

So what what do you think of my twitter idea below. Not one person interested!!!!!?