This blog’s initial reasons for existing are contingent and instrumental. Its purpose will evolve over time, undoubtedly, but for the moment, it is primarily intended as a tool for participating in the Open Learning 17 cMOOC.
Currently on sabbatical, I have spent a great deal of time thinking about teaching, learning, education. I am hopeful that these reflections will help me better support my students’ learning and allow me to empower and equip them — and myself — for living and working in the twenty-first century. Despite cultural and political forces to the contrary, I am hopeful than openness — open exchange, open access, clarity about power relationships, verifiable accuracy in the public record, freedom of connection, freedom of speech, open-mindedness — will provide humanity with the tools it needs to better understand our universe, to help us build more effective, more helpful, more constructive and more sustainable societies across the planet that allow all human beings, indeed, the biosphere as a whole, to survive in diversity and to thrive.
Open learning, connected learning, collaborative learning, critical learning are all part of what I hope will be an emergent paradigm that points toward increasingly collaborative, satisfying, peaceful and sustainable human cultures. It is not an exaggeration to say that I believe that the long-term survival of Homo sapiens sapiens and of all sentient species depends on a radical shift that must include changes in dominant notions of education and learning.