Context in a Digital Learning Environment

I originally wrote about this in the context of a Digital Literacies (Searching the Internet Effectively) that I was pushing into an LMS for the first time. Prior to that, I didn’t bother using a real LMS, just pushed paper for assignments and gave people PowerPoints that had the links embedded in the text. Didn’t really need the LMS before (or after for that fact!).

In all senses, this issue still resonates with me – context, not content, is key. The moment that you learn something is almost as important as what you learned. I remember vividly what I was doing when something clicked – most of you will as well. It seems that most people make those associations between what they were doing and what they learned.

I feel like DS106 and CCK12 have the context hurdles managed in slightly different ways. DS106 seems to provide context using a local facilitator/teacher to help guide at first (maybe as a technical director?), but at some point, the power structure flips (as it did in the Dr. Oblivion/DS107 clash, as well as groups and communities form in CCK). Essentially the learners form their own context for their experiences, and maybe that’s the most important thing with these open courses is that they enable the learner to develop an understanding of how to provide their own context for what they’re learning. Both these  open, massive, online courses have a Tuckman’s stages of group development deal going on.

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