Presentation: E-Learning Myths and their Undoing

Here’s the PowerPoint for a presentation that I gave at Massey University

Here’s a podcast of an interview about the presentation topics (with John Milne).

The abstract is below:

“There a number of claims, truisms or clichés that are frequently taken as self-evident in e-learning discussions, presentations, research proposals and papers. These find pointed expression in buzzwords and catchphrases like “knowledge economy,” “mindtools” or fixed “laws” of technological change. These terms or phrases bring with them particular claims and implications, for example: that knowledge, on its own, is an engine of economic growth; that technological progress drives educational change; and, that computer technology is intrinsically mental or cognitive in nature. These claims and understandings play critical and enabling roles in e-learning research and practice. Closer investigation, however, reveals the “truth” behind these claims to be much less self-evident, and much more controversial and complex than one might initially be led to believe. In this presentation, Dr. Norm Friesen, Canada Research Chair in E-Learning Practices at Thompson Rivers University will describe a number of these myths, will explain how they are associated with particular research designs, and will also discuss alternative paradigms that can help might assist in their “undoing.” Of particular importance in Dr. Friesen’s presentation will be “technologized” conceptions of cognition and education that lend themselves to technological solutions –and how these conceptions can be countered through discursive and other alternative paradigms.”

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