‘Opening education’=knowledge?

Sometimes a bit difficult to understand but perfectly threaded with Eliot’s verses we have the Campbell lecture (material #edcmooc week 2).  And we are asked to share our thoughts about the meaning of ‘opening education’.

As he said, ‘open’ is a very uncommon world to talk about education because we have reify education as it was a box where we can put whatever we want. And that means that we can full it with useful things and with things are not so good.

As I’ve already said in the discussion board, the fact that you can learn from a massive course in which people of a lot of cultures participate, enrich our learning experience by sharing our ideas…but we lose the human factor in most cases. This new information we are able to get could be knowledge but it not has to be ‘educational’. I thinks that is the main cause that some teachers are against this ‘open’ way to learn. The professor is relegated to a series of advises you must do not only for passing the course, but also for assure you what you will have to make your final project about, and that’s a different way to learn from the traditional one.

I don’t think it wasn’t a good way to learn new things because the education is a right and this new form allows people from over the world to get free access to it. But of course, we have to think, analyze and pick out what is information for us and what we can use to improve our knowledge. It’s our task to select and deepen in the themes we think are most important, so that’s why I think this kind of courses are so great!

4 pensamientos en “‘Opening education’=knowledge?

  1. Well, IMHO there’s a difference between knowledge, learning and education.

    Learning is a human trait which can not be suppressed unless one’s unconscious.
    You can’t be in a state of not learning.

    Education is an intentional process where somebody (teacher) or some organization (school) creates an environment which allows for activities that stimulate the learning process into a certain direction (the learning goal).

    Learning and education are often mistaken for each other.
    In such cases I see educationalists propagate nihilistic learning philosophies, like “students have to set their own goals, you can’t force learning”.

    I agree that motivation is a key item in learning but if we as a medical school wouldn’t be setting a set of goals for our med. students, and if we’d let them absolute free to study whatever they’re interested in, how would we know that after six years they’d be doctors and not e.g. musicians?

    Knowledge is a thing too difficult for me to define.
    Is this what I know, we humans know, what there is to be known?
    And, yet more difficult … there’s knowledge by ‘knowing’ and knowledge by ‘description’ …
    If I’ve never seen e.g. a psoriatic skin lesion in my life, do I then know psoriasis?
    Yet, if I know the symptoms, I could recognize a psoriatic skin when I see one for the first time.

    So, concluding, ‘opening education = knowledge’ would be too much of a reductionistic approach for my taste.

    • Of course, it was only a title…
      I can answer to some of your questions…
      you have (in general) three forms of knowledge: practise knowledge (know how to do st), knowledge by acquaitance, and a propositional one (know that).
      In epistemology, ‘knowledge’ is define with logical sentences so, it’s knowledge if:
      – Somebody (we can call it, S) believes or thinks something (for instance, P)
      – ‘S’ has rational reasons to believe or think P
      – P is true
      That’s the definition of knowledge. Of course there’s a difference between education (as institution), learning (your own process) and knowledge, and I think it’s clear if you read the post, that’s because the title is a question and not an afirmative sentence.

      • Thanks for your posts Irene. I find your definition of knowledge is well founded in theory but I’d like to offer a definition that I suggest sits more comfortably with ‘opening education’ and possibly with MOOCs. Being a pragmatist and a fan of actionable knowlegde I find David Weinberger’s Plato inspired definition of value. Weinberger suggests that knowledge results from a “complex process that is social, goal-driven, contextual, and culturally-bound”. A MOOC such as #edcmooc seems to have so many opportunities to desire and be curios, plot and play, be wrong more often than right, talk with others and form social bonds, apply methods and then back away from them. Through calculation and serendipity there is the opportunity for knowledge acquisition.

        The privilege of access to ‘opening education’ is not available for all and there in lies the paradox. Not everyone has the wherewithal to access ‘free’ online resources that may seem free but come with a cost of time, digital access, and the assumption of prior knowledge/previous education.

        David Weinberger’s blogpost ‘The Problem with the Data-Information-Knowledge-Wisdom Hierarchy’ – http://bit.ly/cq26CD

  2. Pingback: E-humans, a new dystopian vision | E-learning and Digital Cultures MOOC

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