Here are a few ideas about how to move closer to the goal of smoothly integrating web 2.0 with education:
- We need to reach a point where students don’t separate “academic” and “social” – the most powerful results will come from making education a social experience. If we can get students to really collaborate and engage themselves with others, without physical boundaries, they will have a much richer experience. (see Part1 below) Stutzman’s results are telling us something: we need a solid model for how we can fit these two worlds together seamlessly.
- We should approach a class full of learners as a community – sometimes this is obvious, in the case of small classes with intimate discussions, but even a lecture hall with 200 students has the potential to function as a collaborative effort.
- We need to use web 2.0 tools as they’re meant to be used – if you put an application on course management on Facebook, it might feel like “school” rather than socializing, and it might fail. If, instead, you put a community-building application up there, you may create a community of learners.
- Ideally, more educators will give this a shot, like Fred Stutzman. And, hopefully, they will be sharing their results. If we can work together (ahhh…web 2.0) to find a model where we get the results we’re looking for, we can harness the potential of these tools to revolutionize the way that our students learn and the skills and knowledge that they acquire over the course of their education.