Monday, August 22, 2011

Learning In a Digital World

Learning in a Digital World

My personal philosophy of learning is definitely tied deeply to collaboration. I have done most of my learning in a virtual classroom. I took my first distance course in 2001 related to my associated degree. From that time to today, I have elected to take any class needed for degree completion online if it was offered in that manner. I absolutely believed that learning is best fostered (online) through peer collaboration and teacher presence and feedback in the distance classroom (Driscoll, 2005). In the traditional classroom, self inquiry and self directedness is a must to compete academically in today’s fast paced educational environment. The teacher is needed as a guide, not as an information giver. We, as students can find our own information. We just need collaboration to help us make sense of that information and to help us apply it to authentic circumstances. Learning at its best happens when I connect with others and veer into the circumstances and perspective to add to my own (Siemens, 2008). I then build a mental model for understanding and add to it through my own and the shared experiences of others.

Driscoll, M. P. (2005). Psychology of learning for instruction (3rd ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson Education

Siemens, G. (2008, January 27). Learning and knowing in networks: Changing roles for educators and designers. Paper presented to ITFORUM. Retrieved from


  1. Roxanne,
    I agree with you that collaboration is really important in learning, especially when that learning occurs online. Like you, I also prefer online classes to face-to-face classes. I feel that when I compare my learning experiences in the face-to-face classroom to my experiences in the online classroom, I have learned more in my online courses than my face-to-face courses. I think the ability to "zone out" and miss things in a face-to-face class is far too great for me. In an online class, however, if I "zone out" I can easily go back to where I left off and am less likely to miss something important.

  2. Roxanne

    I also agree with your philosophy of learning, because I have found out this is the best way for me to learn also. I went to college back in the 80's but I feel I wasted my time, because I did not get anything out of those four years, except a degree. I have learned more from online classes then I ever learned face-to-face.

  3. Roxanne,
    Online courses have forced me to pay closer attention to assignments, rubrics, discussions and syllabi. In a face to face class room I found myself more distracted from the content and more focused on personalities in the classroom. I agree that we can still effectively collaborate through online courses and gain as much , if not more, from our virtual classes.