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Graduation 2008

Activity 21: The chicken and egg conundrum – technology and pedagogy inter-relate

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Edited by Amanda Harrington-Vail, Thursday, 24 Apr 2014, 14:27


As an OU Tutor I use combined technology and pedagogic theory and practice on a daily basis, it is vital that these two work alongside as one cannot manage without the other. Pedagogy is the primary factor and technology is the medium. In Tutor Forums some other tutors have said that although eTMA's have benefits they are concerned about them "getting lost in cyberspace" or other technology malfunctions. Additionally face-to-face tutorials are generally preferred to online tutorials and in particular ones using e.g. OU Live (Blackboard Collaborate formerly known as Elluminate) rather than tutor group forum asynchronous discussion. Technology is often spoken about as a tool (with some convenience yet quite a lot of concern) that enables the pedagogy, whilst also hampering communication tools due to 'fear' by users (tutors and students). This was part of the reason I decided to undertake the MAODE because educational technology is I believe the future of online learning particularly with the OU as a leader in this field. It indicates the tension between pedagogy and technology that the article highlighted. Technophobia is a strong and emotive term however it exists and can be quite anxiety-ridden especially for students with mental health conditions such as social phobia, affecting their online participation impacting on their learning. Whereas other students engage in mlearning such as OU Anywhere app, voice recording our face-to-face tutorials and using their smartphone to research, read and/or write in tutor group forums. Some tutors do this too although in my experience it is student-led, which is unfortunate because tutors could (should?) be a positive role model in enabling students to find various ways to connect with their learning.


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SXR103 chemistry is fun (2008) :-)

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Most of my working life was in the IT industry, well over 25 years, from trainee programmer to consultant business systems analyst.

I loathe on-line learning. I want books, books, more books, real face to face tutorials, residential courses, real practical activity not computer simulations. It's not always fear of or non-familiarity with technology that is the major factor (though I've seen plenty of that in the OU recently with younger students), but basically some people learn better away from the bloomin' screen and keyboard, and with interaction with real life, not virtual reality.

Anyway... enough of the future OU for me.

I'm off to do my MSc at a brick uni big grin

Graduation 2008

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Yes I agree Jan that many prefer to learn face-to-face, I was mainly referring to reasons I've been given by tutors and students for not participating in tutor group forums. Additionally of course online learning opens up opportunities for people to study at their preferred times and places, being particularly applicable for those e.g. with disabilities.