The learning theory Connectivism focuses on the changes in our learning environment. Learners of today have access to more new information than ever before. George Siemens advises that this access is due to the increase in information, diversity of opinions, availability of information networks (social, cultural, technological, etc.), complex systems and rapidly changing learning environments (Davis, Edmunds, Kelly-Bateman, 2008).
I use my learning networks to access up to date information at multiple points throughout my day. I may use my coworkers, who have an abundant amount of knowledge about my company or learning development, or I may reach out to a website tool to provide me more information. I take in learning magazines, read books, receive learning related emails, check on blogs and read updates from my favorite theorists. Instead of just one way of learning, network connects me to each source of information to keep me “in the know.”
As you may have noticed, I believe that Connectivism is an outstanding theory to showcase the changes in learning today. While I love the library, it’s not the only place to do research anymore. As a designer of training, I need to incorporate connections to networks into my training. The more I can assist my students in creating and maintaining their connections to sources of information, the more they will succeed in learning.
Also, see my previous post for a mind map of my learning networks.
Davis, C., Edmunds, E., & Kelly-Bateman, V. (2008). Connectivism. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved from http://projects.coe.uga.edu/epltt/index.php?title=Connectivism
Deutschman, A. (2005, May 1). Change or Die. Fast Company. Retrieved from http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/94/open_change-or-die.html