“Tools are extensions of humanity, increasing our ability to externalize our thinking into forms that we can share with others.” –George Siemens
Completing this week’s blog assignment for Mathieu Plourde’s Social Networking class at UD #udsnf12, has taken me to a deeper level of understanding of the Internet’s capability to build bridges and expand my knowledge, to build my Personal Learning Network.
I have been welcomed into the rabbit hole and have found helpers along the way. I was afraid of the volume of information (still am a little), but now understand how to filter it and make it work for me.
And, now, thanks to this assignment, have seen the proverbial light by reading George Seiman’s artile on Connectivism. Matthias Melcher (who Seiman refers to in his article) even states that Connectivism is too broad of a concept to be harnessed with the restrictive label of a “learning theory.” That Connectivism expands this parochial notion of education and pushes us to reach beyond the walls of an educational building, a teacher, a formal learning experience.
This is revolutionary stuff, my friends. This is MOOC (Massive Open Online Course), this is OER (Open Educational Resources) . This is the Web, or as Connectivism likes to describe this experience as the neuronal network, where uncertainty is certain and the paths are many. (At least, this is my current interpretation.)
I began seeing these connections when I started the first part of this assignment by researching professional organizations and their use of social media tools. The one I finally decided to review is the National Council for University Research Administrators (NCURA), which subscribes to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Linked In. Now for the fun part!