The Web & Education

Thursday, April 19th, 2:00-3-30 pm

Moderator: Eric Sanchez

« I will discuss the result of an empirical work:. Students from France and Canada are involved in a online multiplayer game. They collaborate, compete to design innovative solutions to implement green energies into their cities. Therefore, they learn how to deal with non deterministic situations and to solve ill structured problems. The results of the study show that the game permits to open the classroom to the world »

Emerging Web technologies make information accessible and offer new learning opportunities by sharing knowledge through the participation to online networks. The ubiquity of digital technologies such as smartphones and digital tablets make possible to learn anywhere and anytime. Therefore; schools are not anymore the only places to make knowledge accessible to all citizens and informalisation (informal learning) driven by emerging Web technologies will probably be at the core of learning in the future.

The panel discussion will address the question of the consequences of informalisation on the future of learning. The following topics/questions could be discussed by participants:

  • What school for the future?
  • What competences for teachers (to teach to XXIst century citizens)
  • New learning strategies for students
  • Attracting non-traditional learners, extending and broadening learning opportunities
  • Lifelong Learning, Life-wide learning Converting professional experiences and personal skills into formally recognised qualifications and competences that are relevant for new job profiles (recognition of informal learning, certification)
  • Does it still make sense to distinguish learning (at school) and real life experiences (practice, training) when mobile devices and wireless connection make possible to stay connected inside and outside school, when the walls of the classroom become transparent?


Stefan Dietze

« I would like to bring a more technical perspective into the discussion and would be interested to discuss how education could benefit from the vast amount of educational data, particularly Linked Data on the Web (OER metadata, Linked Data from universities such as, domain-specific datasets, cross-domain reference data…). Of importance are explititly educational data sources (such as OER metadata) as well as data of implicit educational relevance (eg formalised domain knowledge). I would briefly introduce some of the particularly relevant data sources and some applications making use of them and raise some questions to open a further discussion/input from a more educational perspective about the requirements, needs and impact from an educational perspective. »

Marcel Lebrun

« My main point of interest is the search of impacts of ICT (especially hybrid environments around LMS platforms or WEB tools) on learning and teaching. I just finished an european study (Hy-SUP) about these impacts.

In this panel, I will particularly focus on learning and teaching in hybrid configurations considering that an important impact of ICT in education is the opportunity to reconsider these learning-teaching dimensions in a revisited space-time environment. As an example, I will discuss the now well-known concept of “Flipped Classrooms” which is well described by the sentence : Lectures at home and Homework in class. This idea is interesting because : (1) It seems to be a reachable progressive evolution for teachers keeping them an important role of “learning drivers”. (2) The pedagogical environment developed are consistent with a more learner-centered approach closer to the necessity to develop lifelong learning competencies like critical thinking, active and interactive ways of learning, communication … (3) These methods (ranging from studying by lectures videos and discussing in classrooms to preparing short and dedicated presentations for analysis and questioning during school time) refer and utilize more contextualized resources ranging from scientific papers to personal blogs …

These ways or doing are not “new” (I already got this kind of teaching with an old book years ago when I was student) but they require new mindset about learning and teaching and this is far beyond tools considerations. »

Preetha Ram
(Distance talk)

: « Digital millenials globally are spending more time than ever in cyberspace, demonstrating both motivation and engagement. Open Social Learning has the potential to channel this engagement towards learning, with a concomitant increase in motivation and interest. OpenStudy, a free and open platform for learning, and a global study hall, has demonstrated the impact of open social learning on informal learning. In this testbed, thousands of users gather to ask for help in topics like Math, help one another and remain engaged at a level that would make most classroom teachers envious. They come from 160 countries, 2000 schools, and all age and grade levels. Though they come from different educational systems and languages, they are able to find common ground in their quest for knowledge and their willingness to help. Through their shared time, they embark on a learning journey of their own free will, not imposed by an external authority.

Communities of practice have evolved on the system where over and above learning help, users advice, counsel and mentor one another. I will discuss the system, the informal learning that develops not only skills of the mind (math, science etc) but also skills of the heart (helpfulness, courtesy etc). Finally I will introduce our crowd sourced credentialling system for reporting on a user’s soft skills that are not captured by grades. »