Wednesday, 18 June 2008

VLEs as complements to classroom courses.

There is a difference, I think, between adult learning and the traditional learning of children in schools. I am reading "Handbook of Online Learning" (Innovations in Higher Education and Corporate Training, Rudestam, KE and Schoenholtz-Read, J Eds, Sage 2002) - definitely in the realm of adult learning, but I wonder if there are insights to be had here which would apply in schools.

The non-participating student in class is generally a student who is not learning. What are the reasons for non-participation? There are many, but for some, the idea of being able to review notes and presentations afterwards (asynchronously) may be appealing.

What about the students who wants to take their ideas further? Can appropriate VLEs be set up to allow this interest to be tapped?

And to continue discussion after class, on an existing or new topic, moderated and facilitated by a teacher or better still a student.

What other complements are there for VLEs?


Jennifer said...

George I think we also need to examine that factors that can motivate students who are not learning. Many of these students are much keener to approach learning through VLE's as they are very similar to the other virtual environments they are growing up with and in many cases most comfortable with. The ability to learn in environments which are similar to those in which they play and socialise can be highly motivational to students who would otherwise invest little interest in traditional classroom activities. This is further enhanced by their ability to publish to the web and know that their hard work is read and appreciated by more than just their teacher. I have seen it happen.

George said...

Jennifer - "need to examine that factors that can motivate students who are not learning"
It would be good to examine this.
I take heart from your comment regarding students learning in environments in which they play and socialise since it would imply that VLEs (in the broadest definition of what these are) could have good effects.