CTSS Conference May 2007 Learning Objects -Reusability versus Pedagogy Bill Tait COLMSCT Associate Teaching Fellow
Learning Objects Learning Objects are online learning resources that are reusable and replaceable course modules. They are less expensive than custom designed material and widely available, discoverable in repositories, easily updated and maintained, include multimedia …
Reusability Abstraction – learning objective that plugs into the course. Encapsulation – independent of the course context. Implementation – learning methods, content, and style.
Abstraction Pedagogy Entry requirements defined by objectives of earlier units. Otherwise planned sequence of knowledge construction is lost. But helps reflective consolidation after all topics studied.
Encapsulation Pedagogy Objects can’t see internal contents of other components. Can’t extend practical examples to form authentic progression. Need to develop each from start or use set of chained objects.
Implementation Pedagogy How learning is achieved – teaching method, content, style. Learners have to construct superfluous knowledge. But may be authentic preparation for lifelong learning.
Internet Learning Free range learning from Internet repository objects with support by email, forums, blogs and wikis. Most objects are not pedagogically compatible with the local study context. But inexpensive option, useful for revision and lifelong learning since it provides multiple views.
Guided Internet Learning The tutor guides students to objects as part of a learning programme and provides support. The work needs to be based on a task and associated with a motivating factor. But a heavy load for the tutor to build the programme and monitor its suitability and persistence.
Intranet Learning Uses custom designed software for a specific institutional intranet. Easily meets the requirements of abstraction and implementation but encapsulation may be a problem. But it is the expensive option requiring in-house expertise in suitable technologies.
eXtensible Learning Objects Use XML (eXtensible Markup Language) to separate content from the presentation container. XLO allow the tutor to edit content and adapt it for a local context, down to a single tutor group. Or create new objects with an empty container and text, images or audio/video clips.
Mobile Learning Objects Or, with XML, you can use the same content in different containers. Deliver to different systems such as PCs, PDF documents … and mobile devices using large scrolling text or voice overlay instead.
Conclusion Reusability and pedagogy have conflicting requirements and some compromise is required. Internet learning is inexpensive to create expensive to use, fits pedagogy to technology. GIL is an option. Intranet learning is expensive to create inexpensive to use, fits technology to pedagogy. XLO is an option.