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What might open learning mean in 2013?

January 7th, 2013 by Graham Attwell

A new year and it is time to return to the blog. I have been back in work for a week but bogged down with a project financial report. Anyway happy new year to everybody.

New year is traditionally the time bloggers make their predictions for the year ahead. There doesn’t appear to be anything startling in predictions for educational technology. As Stephen Downes says

I’m always thinking about the future of learning technology, even if I don’t write about it so much these days. This is partially because it has become a bit predictable. Learning will become more open and content cheaper and easier to produce – hence, the move to flips, MOOCs and son-of-flips-and-MOOCs will continue. Computer hardware will continue to outpace need, so we’ll see an increase in cloud and virtualization. Always-connected and mobile will continue to grow and increase capacity with LTE and processing power, so we’ll see always-on learning. And then of course there are the things that have happened in the past, which are the easiest to predict, things like 3D printing, gamification and analytics. All good. These are the easy predictions, and everyone is making them.

He goes on to make an interesting prediction that publishers will regain power from the move to HTML5 which is harder to use than previous mark up technologies. I am not so sure about this – there are a growing number of software development kits which may make HTML5 quite easy to use.

I also think the move towards open learning needs a bit of unpicking. Open could and should go way beyond higher education institutions offering MOOCs – be they of the c or x variant. Way more important for me is the potential for knowledge to be shared openly and to be applied in context. Always-connected and mobile moves learning out of the classroom and into the context in which both knowledge might be acquired practically and at the same time applied. And if learning analytics could be extended beyond its present institutional focus to look at real life learning there is the potential to merge learning and knowledge development as well as formal and informal learning and develop a whole new ecosystem of learning. That is my hope and my prediction for 2013.

One Response to “What might open learning mean in 2013?”

  1. Ray Lewis says:

    Blwyddyn Newydd Dda,
    Happy New Year Graham.

    I was browsing on the WWW ( teaching and learning) on the internet and curiousity got the better of me when I saw Pontydysgu on google. I am very impressed with your site however where have all your long curls gone?

    You may remember me from the days when Dyfed LEA was alive and well about twenty years ago. I now live in Tauranga in the Bay of Plenty in New Zealand.

    As you may recall Dyfed was reorganised in 1996 and I ended up in Pembrokeshire for a year while my little Empire was carved up. I went to Singapore on a two year contract and met some great colleagues. We went to New Zealand in December 1999 on a six month visit and liked the lifestyle and the weather so much that we decided to stay.

    The Minis Try Man is on Youtube not a website. I bought a MacBook back in 2009 when we were last in Wales and I had a go at a competition that HP were running the video was my attempt. Time has moved on and I spend much of my time coaching Cricket and Badminton at Bethlehem College because my son is very good at these sports.

    In 2013 we are visiting the UK around Easter and stopping off at Singapore. I plan to launch my site (Be Wise Exercise and Socialise) which is going to be the vehicle for promoting my ideas about skill based learning.

    Hope you have a successful 2013 and perhaps we can keep in touch.



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    Skills Panorama, they say,  turns labour market data and information into useful, accurate and timely intelligence that helps policy-makers decide on skills and jobs in Europe.

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    Talking about ‘European’ MOOCs

    The European EMMA project is launching a  webinar series. The first is on Tuesday 17 November 2015 from 14:00 – 15:00 CET.

    They say: “In this first webinar we will explore new trends in European MOOCs. Rosanna de Rosa, from UNINA, will present the philosophy and challenges behind the EMMA EU project and MOOC platform developed with the idea of accommodating diversity through multilingualism. Darco Jansen, from EADTU (European Association of Distance Teaching Universities), will talk about Europe’s response to MOOC opportunities. His presentation will highlight the main difference with the U.S. and discuss the consequences for didactical and pedagogical approaches regarding the different contexts.

    OER – update 2

    Open Education Europa has compiled and is releasing today as open data the analytical list of European Repositories of Open Educational Resources (OER).

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    • Collaborative OER production initiatives (LeMill, RVP.CZ Portal,, KlasCement”)

    OER – update 1

    From the Universidad a Distancia de Madrid (UDIMA) – Madrid Open University – we are pleased to present the European Research Network of Open Educational Resources (ERNOER), a collaborative space in which more than fifty internationally educational institutions and prestigious universities are involved which can be accessed through the following link:

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