Connectivism III

16Feb09


February 15th

Part Three

Technology has reorganized how we live, but not how we think. The fact that information is doubling presents an unspoken pressure–learners need to know more, know different ways to access/store that “learning” and be able to share that learning socially. Learn, learn, learn!  However—Does connectivism enhance thinking?

Or perhaps is the goal of connectivism to facilitate social network connections and to spread information? If the knowledge is already there, and the information can just be Googled, why do I need to think and share my opinions? Does it make me SMART if I am able to connect with many people globally, or does that just make me POPULAR? Is popular the new smart?

Our digital age learners who are connected and social in their learning are able to learn from each other on both a local and global scale. Being ‘connected’ in present day is one of the key skills needed for people to ‘be successful’ in order to meet the growing needs of our information age. Further as Howard Gardner states from his Can Technology Exploit Our Many Ways of Knowing? “…new technologies make the matierials, vivid, easy to access, and fun to play with–and they readily address the multiple ways of knowing that humans possess.”

Is the amplification of learning in the digital age and being connected really make one think better?  Would Einstein have been a better learner if he were connected to Facebook, Skype or had a Blog in his classroom or learning environment? What do you think?

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7 Responses to “Connectivism III”

  1. 1 Robin Ulster

    “Is popular the new smart?” I LOVE IT!! THIS IS MY NEW CATCHPHRASE AND I WILL DEFINITELY GIVE YOU CREDIT FOR IT.

  2. 2 David

    Yeah, back to middle school. The popular kids are always right, no matter what.How dare you argue with him–his blog has 58 trillion hits from over a million countries!

  3. 3 susi

    It is really interesting how I meet a lot of people who have very popular blogs, which the blogs do not reflect thinking, but instead link to others who have done the thinking…HAhaha! Is Popular = Smart in the Digital Age?

  4. 4 Jeff Utecht

    It’s a great question to ask….and I’m not sure of the answer.I do know that popular bloggers have affected the stock market with breaking news. Whether the information was right or not.I know that newspapers are failing because people are reading more blogs and other user published medium. In an age where anyone can post…who do we consider smart? Is it the person that everyone reads? IF a blog has 100,000 readers does that make him/her smart in the topic he/she is writing on?I think we also need to look at what the web allows. It allows niche networks, and niche knowledge. No longer do you have to be “smart” in everything or subject.To me the new smart is not being popular, the new smart is knowing where to find information when you need it. Smart people will be those who can find the information they want when they want, adjust to knew information, and adapt to changing landscapes….will “only the smart survive?”🙂Great post!

  5. 5 El Aguila

    Bloggers (post modern Sophists and just as dangerous)—They wandered about Greece from place to place, gave lectures, took pupils, and entered into disputations. For these services they exacted large fees, and were, in fact, the first in Greece to take fees for teaching wisdom. Though not disgraceful in itself, the wise men of Greece had never accepted payment for their teaching. The sophists were not, technically speaking, philosophers, but, instead taught any subject for which there was a popular demand.We learn from Plato, though, that even in the 5th century there was a prejudice against the name “sophist”. By Aristotle’s time, the name bore a contemptuous meaning, as he defines “sophist” as one who reasons falsely for the sake of gain. —Today many bloggers write for hits on their sites, not to pass on knowledge in its most basic form.The internet is an egalitarian tool, but just like an unchecked mob, it can be very dangerous.

  6. 6 susi

    El Aguila, again, you grace this posting with true insight with a delightful analogy. Sophists sold out to society for financial gains, not to push their wisdom. Bloggers may sell out for popular gains, not to push their wisdom. All in all, we look into society and social networks for our wisdom, even back in the days of Socrates, Plato, Aristotle and Alexander the Great. They all had vast social networks and fans. succinct…and Smart El Aguila..gracias!

  7. 7 El Aguila

    I don’t think I have ever been described as succinct. Thank you!


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