30 October 2006

As Usual, the University is the Last to Learn

From Denham Grey, via jill/txt: "The movement towards collaborative learning is strong, some would argue irreversible, helped by web2.0 and social software. The personal learning environment has moved from a walled LMS container to an evolving mix of flickr, youtube, secondlife, myspace, 43things."

This comment, of course, is completely consistent with the conclusion of Why Johnny and Janey Can't Read and Why Mr. and Ms. Smith Can't Teach. So my question is, why has the University of Toronto just made a massive investment in Blackboard, a "walled LMS container" system (that, according to many, is produced by a very problematic company)?

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1 comment:

Berta said...

Hi Mark,
I truly enjoyed tour presentation yesterday on IT Survival at OISE. As I mentioned, I am a EFL visiting professor at MLC who does not know much about technology but is trying hard to find her way. It amazes me that many universities in "developed" countries do not have their own web platforms and as far as I understand, Blackboard is paid and does not always work well (or so it is back home in Venezuela).
I have learned most of what I know from a Community of Practice called "Webheads in Action", a group of EFL teachers around the world who share their knowledge and expertise with all interested in participating in the group. Most tools are free and there is a lot of open collaboration among a very warm and generous community. Six-week free on-line courses are held every January and are open to the general public. Here are two sites I have develop to remind myself how I did what I did, and also to share it with students and colleagues.
Cheers and hope to meet with you again, Berta