Sunday, March 9, 2008

On "Web 2.0 is the Future of Education"

Steve Hargadon posts here about Web 2.0 and the future of education. I will not discuss the post in entirety. He discusses ten trends and here are a few ideas that caught my attention. The first concerns content overload with the explosion of publishing on the Internet:

I will also say that on a personal level, when people ask me the answer to content overload, I tell them (counter-intuitively) that it is to produce more content. Because it is in the act of our becoming a creator that our relationship with content changes, and we become more engaged and more capable at the same time. In a world of overwhelming content, we must swim with the current or tide (enough with water analogies!).

Steve goes on to offer the current shifts and where we are heading:

* From consuming to producing
* From authority to transparency
* From the expert to the facilitator
* From the lecture to the hallway
* From "access to information" to "access to people"
* From "learning about" to "learning to be"
* From passive to passionate learning
* From presentation to participation
* From publication to conversation
* From formal schooling to lifelong learning
* From supply-push to demand-pull

The following suggestions to educators are discussed:

  1. Learn about web 2.0. My note: It is overwhelming, but start somewhere. Start small, find something useful and go from there.
  2. Lurk. My note: How great to hear someone say that. After lurking for some time, and finally dipping my feet in, I know I learned a lot just by dropping in different places...
  3. Participate. My note: By becoming part of the conversation (and I am not good at it yet), my learning has grown as well as my confidence. In actuality, I have put my practices in line with my belief of the need to be a life-long learner. (I always have, just not to this degree).
  4. Digest this thought: The Answer to Information Overload Is to Produce More Information.
  5. Teach content production. My note: I am still working on this. Not content restating, but content production.
  6. Make education a public discussion.
  7. Help build the new playbook. My note: So right and what I have been talking about. Students will not learn how to use the Internet, my space, cell phones, etc. correctly if we do not model it, use it, etc. We do not need to teach the technology, they can do that. We need to teach them to think, be critical in their thinking, and analyze.
Excellent post from Steve. After using technology for a year, it is not just another substitution for a poster, but a shift in the way that we teach.

Tags: Steve Hargadon, education, web 2.0, digital citizenship


  1. You've got quite a healthy repository of information regarding Web 2.0 going on here.

    We've started a podcast about education in Maine that raises some of these very issues, as well as others.

    Like the mighty loon that swims with grace but looks some kind of awkward when trying to take off, another education podcast that has taken flight in the podcast-o-sphere and the blog-o-sphere: Wicked Decent Learning.

    Created by two practice educators, Wicked Decent Learning examines issues in education of importance to Maine and the world beyond. Each issue features a discussion as well as a number of integration suggestions related to technology, literacy and media.

    Wicked Decent Learning is available through iTunes as well as our blog,

    Keep fighting the good fight,

    Dan & Jeff
    Hosts of Wicked Decent Learning

  2. Thank you both for the comment and link. Will check it out!