Tuesday, May 29, 2007


The imperative for educators to embrace new technologies and review pedagogical approaches increases in urgency. “As new technologies continue to grow in power, access to new online experiences will redefine instructional delivery.” (Jukes, 2005)

The case study dilemmas of Jenny, Cathy and Trudi, as outlined in this paper, provide an even sharper focus on contextualized learner needs when considering the vast array of Web 2.0 learning technologies available for us today. It was found that a learner responsive approach and access to ’low tech’ user-friendly tools was instrumental in all cases to improving student participation and learning.

Contemporary educators are faced with vital pedagogical challenges relating to the navigation of many emerging technologies and the complex network of learning environments. New learning theories such as connectivism assist pedagogues in understanding how to evaluate, select and make effective use of the inspiring suite of tools that populate the Web 2.0 environment. Sustainable values such as equity and access for all are beacons in a sea of opportunity, guiding decisions for educators across the expanse.


Judy said...

I agree. Low-tech combined with the needs of the learner is a far better combination than state of the art - but it takes too long to learn how to use it effectively. I was glad to see you mentioned equity and access. We often forget that there are learners that do not have the same access to computers and bandwidth that we have. Can you imagine doing this course from the public library with their (necessary) restirctions on time, zero printing, etc., etc.,

Well done Jenny, Cathy and Trudi!

Trudi said...

Thanks again for your thoughful comments Judy. Sometimes our issues stem back to a simplicity and respect for others. At the end of the day all learners deserve equality of opportunity. We know this does not exist in the real world, however, this should not stop us from aspiring to overcome the barriers.

Cathy Graham said...

Jenny, Trudi, Cathy,

You mentioned "access to ’low tech’ user-friendly tools was instrumental in all cases to improving student participation and learning."

Is it the access to user friendly, easy to use technologies, or the pedagogically appropriate use of these technologies which is of most benefit to learners and learning programs?

Jenny said...

I am sure that Trudi and Cathy will have their own replies to your question Cathy G. I dont want to get into the separation of pedagogy and technology as I think the boundaries are blurring especially as some tools are designed to be socially collaborative in response to educators requests to developers to make them in inline with social constructivism ideals. I think - and I do it myself - that teachers choose tools which are motivating to students - this affective domain is so often overlooked as a powerful teacher. Using an ipod for listening while you are walking the dog is much more appealing than being strapped to a desk in a classroom listening to a scratchy cassette.