Collaborative Education

Over the past few months I’ve been having discussions with a couple of people in the education field. The concept of “open education” came up and seemed to be great idea that could allow institutions, teachers, pupils and the community to share and start discussing their thoughts & challenges. The concept was to allow schools to use online tools (possible wiki concept) as a means to start sharing their syllabi and best practices. The natural challenge is to first get a school to buy into the concept… I was successful in convincing two principals in South Africa to buy into it, unfortunately my trip to SA came to end prior to having a chance to actually implement the idea. I’ve now got some friends on board, hopefully they can take it over and run with it… I’m sure this is already happening elsewhere in the world- need to do some serious research to find success cases…

A friend forwarded this link through to me, the “Social Media Classroom” – I haven’t had a chance to go through it in much detail, but the concept is fantastic. Seems like something def. worth having a play around with… Technology is always just a tool for us, and if used correctly it can really bring about constructive change.

The Social Media Classroom (we’ll call it SMC) includes a free and open-source (Drupal-based) web service that provides teachers and learners with an integrated set of social media that each course can use for its own purposes—integrated forum, blog, comment, wiki, chat, social bookmarking, RSS, microblogging, widgets , and video commenting are the first set of tools. The Classroom also includes curricular material: syllabi, lesson plans, resource repositories, screencasts and videos.