GoogleTranslate Service


Using media for e-portfolios and Personal Learning Environments

March 17th, 2010 by Graham Attwell

Another quick article in the ‘rethinking e-Portfolio and Personal Learning Environments’ mini series.

One of the problems in Technology Enhanced Education, I am coming to think, is that new media are very different from traditional paper and book based media. And as Friesen and Hug (2009) argue that “the practices and institutions of education need to be understood in a frame of reference that is mediatic: “as a part of a media-ecological configuration of technologies specific to a particular age or era.” This configuration, they say, is one in which print has been dominant. They quote McLuhan who has described the role of the school specifically as the “custodian of print culture” (1962) It provides, he says, a socially sanctioned “civil defense against media fallout”  – against threatening changes in the mediatic environs.

So what is appropriate content for an e-Portfolio may not be that required by our education systems and institutions, Much of university education is based around essays. Research is still judged by publications in scholarly journals.

Essays and journal content do not make for inspiring web content, however good. Indeed like most other people, I simply print out papers I want to read. But more importantly such paper oriented publications lack the richness that the web can bring, through linking, through the use of multi media, through links to people and increasingly through location specific enhancement.

This problem is not unique to education. As the Guardian newspaper reports, it is also a pressing issue for publishers nervously awaiting the arrival of the iPad and wondering how to produce materials for both print media and for use on a mobile device.

The Guardian interviews Wired editor Ben Hammersley who says “Digital convergence pushes content to more and more devices, but for the requirements of each can be very different. For example, location data can be important for reading stories on the iPhone, while linking is essential for web publishing, and typography has to change for publishing on a tablet computer.”

Hammersley is developing a new content managements system to overcome this problem. Called ‘Budding’ , the system appears to be based on mark up code to allow multiple use of texts.

“Having to learn to write in markup isn’t an imposition, any more than having to learn shorthand or telegraphese. And as with learning any new language, you gain a new soul: writing in markup would allow you to embed code” Hammersley explains on his blog.

“The ability to embed code within a story gives us whole new realms of possibilities for journalism and publishing. Digital platforms are connected and location aware, so why not use that? At the moment the answer is “because your infrastructure won’t let you,” but if it could, the potential is extraordinary.”

In another blog entry he says: “One of my basic points is that having lots of metadata means you can do lots of really nice stuff when you transition from print to online, or print to multimedia. But that metadata needs to be captured and stored as close to the original author as you can. The moment when you can write this stuff down and store it is fleeting, and once it has passed, it has passed forever, for profitable values of forever at least.”

And according to the Guardian: “Budding should also provide an archive for writers as the project aims to transfer the writing and editing online to the cloud, and export it from there to multiple formats such as Indesign or blogging software.”

This sounds very much like part of a Personal Learning Environment to me: a tool which can allow us both to capture contextual learning where and when it happens and to repurpose it for presentation in different media, including on-line through an e-Portfolio and in written formats for essays and scholarly publications.

The only draw back I see is the mark-up language – would academics, students, learners use mark up. Maybe they would, if there was enough obvious gain. And maybe we could develop a simple menu allowing the markup to be added from a visual editor. After all, word processors juts use a menu system to add mark up to text (and a long time ago with Word Perfect the mark up code was written).

Ben Hammersley says he is going to offer Budding free to authors. I’ve signed up for a trail. But could we work out a mark up code for a PLE or e-Portfolio?

References

Friesen N and Hug T (2009), The Mediatic Turn: Exploring Concepts for Media Pedagogy, In K. Lundby (Ed.). Mediatization: Concept, Changes, Consequences. New York: Peter Lang. Pp. 64-81.

McLuhan, M. (1962), The Gutenberg Galaxy: The Making of Typographic Man. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

4 Responses to “Using media for e-portfolios and Personal Learning Environments”

  1. Michael Rowe says:

    Thanks for this post. I had a few thoughts while reading it that I thought I’d raise.

    First of all, the idea of using markup to separate content from presentation is why XML was designed, so it’s not a new idea (unless I’ve misunderstood the idea behind the post). We use RSS to distribute content that can be displayed in any number of ways depending on the platform we use to view it. How is this different from what Hammersley is suggesting?

    I also wonder about the phrase, “Having to learn to write in markup isn’t an imposition”. I’m pretty comfortable using markup, whether it’s HTML or some kind of wiki-based format, so I can imagine learning yet another system of rules. However, I think I can say quite confidently that there are very few students and academics who will (at least in my limited experience). Following on from the idea of using markup to create some sort of PLE / portfolio, doesn’t that limit what the PLE can be to what the designers of the markup language end up creating?

    Finally, the idea of “transferring writing and editing to the cloud” as a form of archiving and distribution seems like it’s already been done. Does Hammersley mean something like Google Docs, or WordPress?

    I guess the point I’m trying to make is that I don’t read anything in the article that seems new in any way when compared to tools that already exist. But as I said, maybe I missed the point.

    Thanks again for a thought-provoking post.

Tweetbacks

  1. Schools are a socially sanctioned civil defense against the printed word. They are custodian of print culture http://bit.ly/aAIVBk

Tweetbacks/Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. […] can see lots of practical (and probably theoretical!) problems here – so was interested in this post from Graham Attwell on PLEs that refers to Ben Hammersley’s budding as: This sounds very […]

  2. […] – Educational Research. Website of Pontydysgu ltd., a Welsh educational research institute.Via http://www.pontydysgu.org Me gusta:Me gustaSé el primero en decir que te gusta esta […]

  • Search Pontydysgu.org

    News Bites

    Teenagers online in the USA

    According to Pew Internet 95% of teenagers in the USA now report they have a smartphone or access to one. These mobile connections are in turn fueling more-persistent online activities: 45% of teens now say they are online on a near-constant basis.

    Roughly half (51%) of 13 to 17 year olds say they use Facebook, notably lower than the shares who use YouTube, Instagram or Snapchat.

    The survey also finds there is no clear consensus among teens about the effect that social media has on the lives of young people today. Minorities of teens describe that effect as mostly positive (31%) or mostly negative (24%), but the largest share (45%) says that effect has been neither positive nor negative.


    Robots to help learning

    The TES reports on a project that uses robots to help children in hospital take part in lessons and return to school has received funding from the UK Department for Education.

    TES says “The robot-based project will be led by medical AP provider Hospital and Outreach Education, backed by £544,143 of government money.

    Under the scheme, 90 “tele-visual” robots will be placed in schools and AP providers around the country to allow virtual lessons.

    The robot, called AV1, acts as an avatar for children with long-term illnesses so they can take part in class and communicate with friends.

    Controlling the robot remotely via an iPad, the child can see and hear their teacher and classmates, rotating the robot’s head to get a 360-degree view of the class.

    It is hoped the scheme will help children in hospital to feel less isolated and return to school more smoothly.”


    Gutenburg

    According to developer Gary Pendergast, WordPress 5, Gutenberg, is nearing release.

    Pendergast says: “As the WordPress community, we have an extraordinary opportunity to shape the future of web development. By drawing on the past experiences of WordPress, the boundless variety and creativity found in the WordPress ecosystem, and modern practices that we can adopt from many different places in the wider software world, we can create a future defined by its simplicity, its user friendliness, and its diversity.”


    Adult Education in Wales

    Learning and Work Institute is organising this year’s adult learning conference in partnership with the Adult Learning Partnership Wales. It will take place on Wednesday, 16 May 2018 at the Cardiff City Stadium.

    They say “Changing demographics and a changing economy requires us to re-think our approach to the delivery of learning and skills for adults. What works and what needs to change in terms of policy and practice?

    The conference will seek to debate how can we respond to need, grow participation, improve and measure outcomes for citizens, and revitalise community education.”


    Other Pontydysgu Spaces

    • Pontydysgu on the Web

      pbwiki
      Our Wikispace for teaching and learning
      Sounds of the Bazaar Radio LIVE
      Join our Sounds of the Bazaar Facebook goup. Just click on the logo above.

      We will be at Online Educa Berlin 2015. See the info above. The stream URL to play in your application is Stream URL or go to our new stream webpage here SoB Stream Page.

  • Twitter

  • Call for papers: Theorising the university: critical perspectives on institutional research socialtheoryapplied.com/2018/… via @socialtheoryapp cc @britsoci @BERANews @BSABourdieuSG @Foucault_News @CoHigherEd @ResearchCGHE

    About 5 hours ago from Cristina Costa's Twitter via TweetDeck

  • Sounds of the Bazaar AudioBoo

  • Recent Posts

  • Archives

  • Meta

  • Upcoming Events

      There are no events.
  • Categories