15 December 2011

The end of the digital native meme at last?

Last week I presented a part of my PhD research at the eLearning Futures Conference at Unitec in Auckland and for the first time in quite a while I didn't feel like an old fuddy duddy banging on about teaching. For most of the last ten years it seems that the Digital Native notion has carried with it the idea that our students are so tech savvy that they know how to learn online. I've always been uneasy about this but have often felt very old-fashioned when I've presented my work at conferences. One reviewer referred to my topic as a "hoary old chestnut!"

So I was really happy to see this on the conference Twitterfall.

I was even happier to find that it was the top tweet of Day 1 of the conference, retweeted 21 times. Perhaps my research is of some use after all.

In it I used a design research approach to develop and refine a theory-based, yet practical means of helping people - tutors or students - to facilitate learning through asynchronous dialogue online, whether through discussion forums, blogs, wikis or other social software. The theoretical model was based on Wegerif’s (2007) online adaptation of Lipman’s community of inquiry model (2003) and Levy’s inquiry based learning model (2009). One outcome is my free help site Networked Dialogue

NB This site is very much beta and works better in Chrome or on a Mac.

Levy, P. (2009). Inquiry-based learning: A framework. University of Sheffield: Centre for Inquiry-based Learning in the Arts and Social Sciences. Retrieved from http://www.shef.ac.uk/cilass/
Lipman, M. (2003). Thinking in education (2nd ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Wegerif, R. (2007). Dialogic education and technology: Expanding the space of learning. New York: Springer.