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Pedagogical Trends

Innovations in pedagogy (andragogy is the correct term for adult learning) are moving towards learner-centred models. Some of these trends are outlined in the NMC Horizon report (2014), and others are covered in a report prepared by the Open University Innovating Pedagogy. For example, "Seamless Learning" - "when a person experiences a continuity of learning across a combination of locations, times, technologies or social settings" (Sharples et al., 2012, p. 4). Originally, this was associated with mobile learning, and is now extended to "learning projects that can be accessed on multiple devices, flow across boundaries between formal and informal settings, and continue over life transitions such as school to university [or polytechnic] and workplace" (Sharples et al., 2012, p. 4).

Personalized learning is also a developing area, and students are mentored rather than taught and encouraged to engage in inquiry and set learning goals as part of learning agreements. Social networked learning has been around since the 19th Century and is now associated with interacting using the Internet. This form of learning mainly occurs informally and there are now dozens of social networking websites where people interact with each other.

Another innovation involves the recognition of prior learning, and this is now commonplace in most institutions in New Zealand enabling students to gain qualifications without coming to class. At CapableNZ (Otago Polytechnic), for example, a facilitated process is used to help candidates to develop a portfolio of evidence based on their work experience and any previous study they have done.

According to the Innovating Pedagogy report, trends such as curating learners in the use of media and openness have implications for educators. If teachers are to support learners in the new educational paradigms such as online, open, hybrid and collaborative learning, they need confidence in using a variety of teaching methods and technologies. They also need to change the way they regard informal learning, and in some cases this form of learning is being recognised and rewarded through the use of open badge systems, e.g., Mozilla badges.

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  • View the presentation: Navigating Digital landscapes by Grainne Conole (2013).
  • Familiarise yourself with the executive summaries of the 2014 Horizon report, and the 2012 Innovating pedagogy report.
  • Explore resources about mobile learning on Thom Cochrane's web page.
  • Choose one trend technology and pedagogy and design a learning activity based on this.
  • Describe or demonstrate the learning activity to the class via your blog.
    • Make sure that you indicate how the technology used in the activity is likely to encourage flexible learning.