Well, last day was full of surprises! A great speed dating session brought to our attention matters of creativity in regard to sustainability and economic efficiency while designing an online course (Keith Hampson) and the role of the educator in the formation of today’s society (Alan Bruce) as the refugee crisis reaches an unprecedented reality. Seamus O Tuama, head of adult learning at the University College Cork in Ireland (and a great companion throughout the Conference) spoke of Cork and how it has embraced the initiative to become a life long learning community. Events such as the life long learning Festival every March along with free access to University lectures and group sessions promote the idea of inter community practices that in turn promote collaboration and open up to great potential in terms of economic growth. Once again, it is not about setting the rules, what it is about is nurturing a milieu where good ideas can come into being.
Last and not least, I would like to thank the two ladies with whom I collaborated at the last workshop organized by OU and Tom Olney, Katherine (Canada) and Delphine (Belgium) on a quest to identify who the online learners really are. I am always impressed by the persistence of the English people to control the unexpected. I am however for personalized learning, meaning that whatever the analytics tell me, customizing a course deprives the students of their right to design it for themselves, so, even if I get to know who the learners are, I´d rather ignore it and let them be.
I have some time left to enjoy this city that has changed so much since my last visit in the late 80’s. I will return on issues raised by the discussions in the conference with more details in the future. #eden16
(Image is mine and is taken from the museum of applied arts)
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