E-learning - the prism effect

June 16, 2014 by Alastair Creelman   Comments (0)

After last week's EDEN conference in Zagreb I had an interesting discussion with a colleague that got me thinking. She had not been to so many conferences in the field of e-learning and although we agreed that this conference had been rewarding she found the lack of focus rather disconcerting. The problem was that most academic conferences focus clearly on a specific discipline or more likely a specialised area of a particular discipline. If you go to a conference in pedagogy you can safely assume that the participants will be professionals in that field and will have common reference points. However in the field of e-learning we tend to gather people from many disciplines who have a common interest in e-learning but who otherwise have few common points of reference. In most e-learning conferences you will meet specialists in pedagogy, IT, management, psychology, policy, administration and others. The result is that the sessions contain a wide range of disciplines and it is hard to see where the focus lies. A session that seems to deal with pedagogical questions can be lead by specialists in other areas and this can seem very messy for those accustomed to mainstream academic conferences.

Read the rest of this post (including a nice photo!) on my blog at http://acreelman.blogspot.se/2014/06/e-learning-prism-effect.html

I've also posted a report from our workshop on learning arenas: Arenas for learning, workshop at EDEN 2014.