Footprints of Emergence Summary

Table of contents

1. Questions [edit]




Footprints of Emergence

Nov 18-29, 2013 | SCoPE Discussion

Questions [edit]

Assessing Emergent Learning

  • Is it possible to assess emergent learning? How do you 'capture' learning that is not expected? How do you measure or value it? Are these the right questions or are they flawed?
  • Would it be possible to ask for emergent learning as a result of a course? Would EL be expected when a student is doing synchronously two courses in different fields? 
  • What is the purpose of the assessment? To provide meaningful feedback to the learner?
  • Why the need to measure?
  • Is diagnostic reasoning the same as emergent learning? Can we afford to have our doctors' knowledge be emergent as they practice on us? 
  • Does the act of 'measuring/assessing' destroy what it is trying to 'measure/assess'?
  • One thought I have is that ‘learning’ overall is about some kind of change .... So maybe somehow the question is ...  Can the Change be 'described' / measured / reported ....? 
  • I prefer the notion of assessing learning against self, but how could this work from a teacher/trainer's point of view?
  • I would venture that all learning involves a transformation of identity. As it is mostly gradual this is not sufficiently recognised. Take a moment to think about it in your own terms.Then think about the absurdity of assessing that change against externally imposed criteria. Who are you working for when you do that? Whose agenda?
  • What happens when the "emergent learning artefact" is a behaviour, or an attitude, or something so ingrained that the artefact is the learner?
  • Does emergent learning have to produce something unique or odd?
  • The difficult question is What is New or what is Unique.
  • How do we get to the person as product of themselves over person as "product" of education. Before we claim that something we did caused learning we need evidence they were listening to us. Would this be an Artifact?
  • "just tell me what I need to do . . .".  This is not only the attitude of students but professors - rubrics so that they can quantify the learning in some way and they tell themselves they are moving from subjectivity to objectivity - and what happened to expert opinion?  How to get to the "rethinking of education?"

Designing for Emergent Learning

  • Can we design for emergent learning or is that a contradiction in terms?
  • The tension for me in terms of design is "who" is doing the designing and what is the intention of the design?
  • Humans can’t make things appear from nothing but we can imagine things, build them, operate them and then think about thinking about them so we come pretty close to the emergence of things already. Why not then design a process for emergence?
  • I wonder if encountering the world as it is rather than as it is modeled to be forces us to realize a wider spectrum of working strategies?

Natural Learning?

  • On the other hand how do we avoid turning people OFF learning because we make them 'start here'  when they have already gone past that?
  • Years ago I was an early years teacher and have been through the 'should we let reading emerge through a real books approach to reading?' i.e. just let children handle and browse through books they like and learn to read because they love books - or should we teach them to read through a structured introduction to phonics and a decoding approach?

Welcome to Footprints of Emergence

  • wonder if receptivity to emergence can be learned or taught?
  • Why do you think school beats this out of children - and in what forms do you think it is fundamentally there? How do adults draw on these early experiences? Or what do we do in our education systems that inhibits emergent learning?
  • If emergence is unpredictable, how can we design for it?
  • The other response may be orderly, purposeful and, possibly, goal directed, like learning to knit by trial and error--which I think reveals an innate human need to work things out. Is that need something we could leverage?
  • How much control is too much here? Or maybe "control" is too loaded a term and I should use preferable or productive pushing which would allow us to have a purpose for learning over a strictly defined goal?
  • I would also be interested to hear more about how you think transformational learning might be recognised. How would you define transformational learning?
  • It could be possible the constraints you've mentioned are meant to prevent our drifiting out beyond our ability to recover sense from what we experience?
  • Can you think of examples where the balance between prescriptive and emergent learning has or hasn't worked?
  • The question is, does the visualisation tool work? - for different people, contexts, courses, dynamics, and all the different aspect of learning 
  • Do we need to somehow designate a space specifically for learning or is it possible for people to realize this on their own?
  • Wonder if the need to remind people they are in a learning space is a means of calling a particular learning process to front of mind?
  • But emergence seems different and not so tightly bound to cause and effect? Emergence seems like the embodyment of the unexpected?
  •  So far, I am getting a sense that emergence is "dynamic" in a natural sort of way which means it might be paradoxical to try to "manage" "emergence"?

Preparing for Webinar 2 - Drawing Footprints

  • I wonder if you could say a little more about why you scored theory of mind right at the outer edge of the 'scary/edgy' emergent learning zone - almost at the edge of chaos. What was it that happened in the course that caused you to score this in this way? 
  • You said there were 'two courses' here - how would the other one differ? Presumably there was a software learning course, and a culture and digital media course.  If you mapped them both, and superimposed them, what would that show you (if anything?)  And over the time of the course, would these two adjust relative to each other, and relative to the your degree of skill and comfort in using the software? 

Drawing and using footprints

  • Does she feels confined by the prescriptive aspects she has to follow? If so, is there a way to soften required portions?
  • If you (Scott) can describe the course and its (many points of) value so elegantly, who needs footprints? 
  • On the other hand if you do create a footprint (each: Scott and Lisa?) and then share them with each other (and we would love to see them too, but only if you are comfortable with that) - how would that be different to just describing the course in text?  Would it prompt different conversations, and if so, how might they turn out? 
  • But in order to do the drawing I need some scoring of the critical factors. Where to put the dot of each factor? 
  • Are some of the stars bigger than others intentionally. Is it that you wanted us to note the factors that are not near the edge. Were these factors particularly significant in your experience? How did they influence the experience as a whole?
  • Since most of the factors are almost at the edge of chaos, what prevented you from falling off the edge and out of the course?
  • Do you think a way around being too bound up in the time element would be to think in cycles of experience? 

Metaphors for emergent learning

  • This week we posted our latest version of the critical factors we consider when drawing footprints of emergence. The content of this list (attached) is not different to the previous one, but it does include images. We thought these images might make the factors easier to use. What do you think?
  • Which of these images resonate with you? Which don't? And why?
  • Do you have any comments about the factors themselves and the way they have been organised into clusters?
  •  how much do the images influence the way people interpret the factors?
  • What would a usefully open image be like?  And have we got any in our mapping sheet?  
  • For me the 2D interactive map is great but I would love to see what would happen if we could rotate and translate these maps in a computational space!  what are your thoughts on this? 
  • how far can one go in developing new tools, without losing most of your audience in the process?
  • Is this an 'app', and should it be an app that can be downloaded and used in the first 5 minutes, or is it a new tool that requires two webinars and two weeks of discussion to use?
  • How do you approach the movement of math ed participants across different degrees of freedom, and abstraction, and how do you (and the participants) work with the homologies between maths and gaming? Gaming is embodied (or vitrually embodied) algorithms, no?  Or is there also a homology between algorithms and programming in gaming? 
  • How do you know if the activity is right for you if someone directly manages your attention?
  •  For instance the “birds backyard” statement is arrived at by a repeatable process that might yield clues to its reason for being an answer that is legitimate? As might emergent artifacts leave evidence of how they came to be?
  • Do you think an analogy is more restrictive than a metaphor? That an analogy is an object of dominance, or at least an expected outcome that is correct at the level of approval by others over a metaphor being a raw outcome of the thinker’s mind? A decision unique to the thinker?
  • Left to their own without the attraction of structure how do we discover meaning? Where would it be in the scattering of ideas that don’t somehow connect? 
  • How would we force ourselves to openly observe the evidence without constantly coming to conclusions about it?
  • How can some common analysis of big WHYs happen? How can I look at your footprint and you look at mine in ways that we can see similar big SO WHATs? Your footprint looks like a butterfly and mine has a big protuberance in the southwest - so what does it mean for the compatibility of our dreams and beliefs?
  • What are we actually trying to achieve? Do we want to reveal each person's learning algorithm? Are we trying to capture what people have learned from us so that we can build on that?
  • What about a polling system to help build the footprints?

Participants [edit]

Facilitators : Roy Williams, Jenny Mackness, and Simone Gumtau

Moderator: Sylvia Currie

Forum Participants:

Webinar Participants Week 1:

  • Jenny Mackness (facilitator)
  • Sylvia Currie (moderator)
  • Barbie B
  • Catherine Cronin
  • Colin Madland
  • Deidre Bonnycastle
  • Helen Crump
  • Heli Nurmi
  • Hilda Anggraeni
  • Jutta
  • Lori Lebowiz
  • Mary Burgess
  • Paige Cuffe
  • Peter Rawsthorne
  • Roy Williams
  • Scott Johnson
  • Sher Meaney
  • Simone Gumtau
  • Tony Cairns

Webinar Participants Week 2:

  • Jenny Mackness (facilitator)
  • Roy Williams (facilitator)
  • Sylvia Currie (moderator)
  • Don Beadle
  • Helen Crump
  • Lisa M Lane
  • paigecuffe
  • Scott Johnson
  • Sher Meaney
  • Simone Gumtau