Re-Thinking E-Learning Research
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In education, novel practices, applications, and forms-- from bulletin boards to Webcasts, and from online educational games to open educational resources -- have been proliferating rapidly. However, research of these changing forms and practices has gravitated towards the methods and philosophical frameworks used to investigate and design earlier instructional technologies and practices: Technical progress is seen as single-handedly "impacting" education, human action is understood as fundamentally rational and rule-bound, and phenomena like education and communication are understood according to strictly functional models. In this talk, Dr. Friesen will describe how these understandings have been contradicted by unpredictable developments in technology and practice, and by changes in the theory underpinning research itself. Referring to his 2009 book, “Re-Thinking E-Learning Research: Foundations, Methods and Practices”, he will outline ways in which research in distance education and e-learning can be re-thought, to catch up to new theoretical, technical and empirical developments.