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Ubiquitous Learning

Ubiquitous Learning

Bill Cope
Mary Kalantzis
Copyright Date: 2009
Pages: 264
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  • Book Info
    Ubiquitous Learning
    Book Description:

    This collection seeks to define the emerging field of "ubiquitous learning," an educational paradigm made possible in part by the omnipresence of digital media, supporting new modes of knowledge creation, communication, and access. As new media empower practically anyone to produce and disseminate knowledge, learning can now occur at any time and any place. The essays in this volume present key concepts, contextual factors, and current practices in this new field._x000B__x000B_Contributors are Simon J. Appleford, Patrick Berry, Jack Brighton, Bertram C. Bruce, Amber Buck, Nicholas C. Burbules, Orville Vernon Burton, Timothy Cash, Bill Cope, Alan Craig, Elizabeth M. Delacruz, Lisa Bouillion Diaz, Steve Downey, Guy Garnett, Steven E. Gump, Gail E. Hawisher, Caroline Haythornthwaite, Cory Holding, Wenhao David Huang, Eric Jakobsson, Tristan E. Johnson, Mary Kalantzis, Samuel Kamin, Karrie G. Karahalios, Joycelyn Landrum-Brown, Hannah Lee, Faye L. Lesht, Maria Lovett, Cheryl McFadden, Robert E. McGrath, James D. Myers, Christa Olson, James Onderdonk, Michael A. Peters, Evangeline S. Pianfetti, Paul Prior, Fazal Rizvi, Mei-Li Shih, Janine Solberg, Joseph Squier, Kona Taylor, Sharon Tettegah, Michael Twidale, Edee Norman Wiziecki, and Hanna Zhong.

    eISBN: 978-0-252-09088-2
    Subjects: Education, Library Science

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-viii)
  3. INTRODUCTION: The Beginnings of an Idea
    (pp. ix-xiv)

    This book sets out to define an emerging field, a field that for the reasons we outline in the chapters that follow, we have chosen to call “ubiquitous learning.” Ubiquitous learning is a new educational paradigm made possible in part by the affordances of digital media. Throughout this book, we will explain what we mean by this claim and marshal evidence in its support.

    But first, who are we and how did we come to write this book? The starting point was a strategic initiative of the College of Education at the University of Illinois, the Ubiquitous Learning Institute, whose...

  4. Part A: Concepts

    • 1 Ubiquitous Learning: An Agenda for Educational Transformation
      (pp. 3-14)

      At first glance, it is the machines that make ubiquitous learning different from heritage classroom and book-oriented approaches to learning. These appearances, however, can deceive. Old learning can be done on new machines. Using new machines is not necessarily a sign that ubiquitous learning has arrived. And some features of ubiquitous learning are not new—as Chip Bruce highlights so clearly in his chapter, they have a proud place in the history of educational innovation, which stretches back well before the current wave of machines.

      But to focus on the machines for the moment, there is an obvious link between...

    • 2 Meanings of ″Ubiquitous Learning″
      (pp. 15-20)

      This collection invokes the term “ubiquitous learning.” Here I would like to examine the different meanings this expression might have—different kinds of ubiquity, and in relation to that, different ways in which we ought to rethink teaching and learning. The most ordinary meaning is captured in the expression “anytime, anywhere” learning. In contemporary markets, the instantaneous and highly customizable availability of services and information is becoming a standard branding device. This ranges from 24/7 customer service hotlines to being able to send and receive text messages from your cell phone. In education, online programs are frequently marketed around the...

    • 3 Ubiquitous Learning, Ubiquitous Computing, and Lived Experience
      (pp. 21-30)

      Ubiquitous learning is more than just the latest educational idea or method. At its core the term conveys a vision of learning that is connected across all the stages on which we play out our lives. Learning occurs not just in classrooms, but in the home, workplace, playground, library, museum, nature center, and in our daily interactions with others. Moreover, learning becomes part of doing; we do not learn in order to live more fully but rather learn as we live to the fullest. Learning happens through active engagement, and significantly, it is no longer identified with reading a text...

    • 4 Participatory Transformations
      (pp. 31-48)

      Learning, in its many forms, from the classroom to independent study, is being transformed by new practices emerging around Internet use. “Conversation,” “participation,” and “community” have become watchwords for the processes of learning promised by the Internet and accomplished via technologies such as bulletin boards; wikis; blogs; social software; shared Internet-based repositories; devices such as laptops, PDAs, cell phones, and digital cameras; and infrastructures of Internet connection—telephone, wireless, and broadband. Early discussion of the Internet extolled its transformative potential for democracy, perhaps best demonstrated by the U.S. presidential nomination campaign that developed around Howard Dean in 2000 and contemporary...

    • 5 Ubiquitous Media and the Revival of Participatory Culture
      (pp. 49-61)

      Mass media technologies historically have been controlled by elite minorities. Not surprisingly, the products, authorship, and distribution patterns of media have largely served the interests of their masters. To be sure, many efforts have been made to establish models of public service media in pursuit of the “public interest, convenience, or necessity” (McChesney 1993, 18). But domination of media control by political and corporate elites, made possible by the demands of existing media technologies and economies, has largely tipped the balance in favor of private, commercial, and political interests.

      The emergence of broadcasting brought consolidation of media control to a...

    • 6 Notes toward a Political Economy of Ubiquitous Learning
      (pp. 62-71)

      Substantial claims are currently being made for ubiquitous learning (UL). It is seen as an emergent new set of revolutionary learning technologies that is to be distinguished from conventional IT-aided learning, e-learning, and distance learning, through its utilization of new mobile technologies for the construction of collaborative, distributed, often peer-to-peer learning platforms. Thus, for instance, Ellen D. Wagner (2005, 40) inEDUCAUSE Reviewclaims: “The mobile revolution is finally here. Wherever one looks, the evidence of mobile penetration and adoption is irrefutable. PDAs (personal digital assistants), MP3 players, portable game devices, handhelds, tablets, and laptops abound. No demographic is immune...

    • 7 From Ubiquitous Computing to Ubiquitous Learning
      (pp. 72-90)

      This chapter examines the research area of ubiquitous computing for indications of productive lines of analysis and synthesis in ubiquitous learning. As such it views the rich set of issues related to ubiquitous learning through a single lens, albeit one that allows me to focus on a certain set of key concerns. In taking this approach, the aim is to complement the work of other chapters that address the concept of ubiquitous learning from other very different and frequently richer perspectives. The main argument is that ubiquitous computing has generated a set of concepts about ubiquity, inherent learning issues, and...

  5. Part B: Contexts

    • 8 Ubiquitous Learning: Educating Generation I
      (pp. 93-99)

      Technology has the power to inspire us to transform the way we live, the way we teach, and the way we learn. It is the impact of technology on every facet of our lives, known or unknown, that defines its ubiquity. And yet, as we look at the majority of classrooms, the way we teach and the way we learn have not changed over the past several hundred years. The basic principles and tenets that are followed still define a standard for what it means to be educated. For example, teachers still aim to ensure that children can read, write,...

    • 9 Ubiquitous Learning with Geospatial Technologies: Negotiating Youth and Adult Roles
      (pp. 100-108)

      As elaborated by Bertram Bruce and others in this volume, ubiquitous, or “anytime, anywhere,” learning is a concept that has a long intellectual history within education. The question before us is how ubiquitous computing and digital media afford new opportunities for implementing and supporting the social practices associated with that learning paradigm. Geographic information systems and related geospatial tools are a compelling example of how technology has become a pervasive presence in our lives. Historically designed for workplace applications such as city planning, programs like Google Maps have introduced GIS to a broader public as an everyday tool for planning...

    • 10 Digital Divide and Higher Education in Sub-Saharan Africa
      (pp. 109-118)

      The Commonwealth of Nations is a most curious international organization. It is a voluntary association of more than fifty independent sovereign states, most of which were once British colonies, but which now hold strong postcolonial aspirations. It has lofty goals, which include the promotion of democracy, human rights, and good governance, but little wealth in common with which to pay for its ambitious plans. The interests of the richer Commonwealth countries, such as Australia, Canada, and Britain, seem to lie elsewhere—with the more influential international groups, such as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development—while its poorer members...

    • 11 Cyberenvironments: Ubiquitous Research and Learning
      (pp. 119-130)

      Over the past fifteen years, the World Wide Web has evolved from a tool created to support scientific research to a ubiquitous social infrastructure. The Web has had an enormous impact on society in terms of changes in practices and culture, in the emergence of new businesses and career paths, and in the extent to which our lifestyles have become dependent on its existence. Yet a mechanistic description of it—that it greatly simplifies sharing of text and multimedia information and enables links between documents—provides no more than a hint of its transformative power. Nonetheless, the Web has revolutionized...

    • 12 Immersive Environments for Massive, Multiperson, Online Learning
      (pp. 131-143)

      The majority of instruction offered via the Internet to date is Web-based and largely asynchronous in nature; immersive technologies, on the other hand, present new opportunities for shared, collaborative, and synchronous educational experiences. Furthermore, as these physically immersive environments and technologies evolve, the line increasingly blurs between what is physical versus what is virtual. As a result, there is an ever-increasing opportunity for delivering engaging situated learning and promoting increased interaction between learners, teachers, the content, and each other. This chapter discusses how massive, multiperson, online learning environments extend the concept of ubiquitous learning and can change the very nature...

    • 13 Let′s Get Serious about E-games: A Design Research Approach toward an Emerging Perspective
      (pp. 144-155)

      Ubiquitous learning, as described in previous chapters, is the most recent interpretation of how we can and should learn in the era of knowledge economy. Learning can be experienced anywhere, anytime, and via any media. Advancement of technology has made information and knowledge more accessible to the population at large; thus educators today are trying to figure out the best way to take advantage of technology in order to enhance the creation, transition, transformation, and utilization of knowledge. But so far the outcome is not as good as anticipated. This seems to be a case of déjà vu if one...

    • 14 Access Grid Technology: An Exploration in Educators′ Dialogue
      (pp. 156-172)

      Human–computer interaction and networking technologies such as video conferencing tools have prompted many research studies in multiple fields (computer science, communication, psychology, and education) to investigate the use of media technology as collaborative tools. Most literature in the area focuses on either point-to-point video collaboration tools or e-mail and e-mail list software as communication tools, with little attention paid to multipoint collaboration tools. Recent “research in education suggests there are many advantages in using multipoint collaborative tools and Web-based technologies” (Tettegah 2005, 273), especially in the realm of ubiquitous learning. Multipoint collaborative tools combine oral, auditory, and visual stimuli...

    • 15 Physical Embodiment of Virtual Presence
      (pp. 173-188)

      Mark Weiser’s seminal paper (1991) that introduces ubiquitous computing describes an environment where people collaborated and communicated using tabletlike interfaces of various scale. Large screens were used by groups of people, whereas smaller screens were used for more intimate or private work. These screens were scattered throughout the surroundings and were connected via a network. The form and rectilinear screens of these tablets dictated how they should be used—often as one would use a software application on a computer. Although their location might suggest function (a large screen in a public space could be used by a large group...

    • 16 Administrative Implications of Ubiquitous Learning for Nonprofit Colleges and Universities
      (pp. 189-194)

      This volume provides insights into the emerging field of ubiquitous learning. At the heart of the matter is how to best use the burgeoning number of technologies in meaningful ways to facilitate high-quality learning experiences throughout our lives. A critical aspect of nurturing the potential of ubiquitous learning is to take seriously the caution offered by Kalantzis and Cope in this book’s introduction, that “it will be quite some time before the vision of ubiquitous learning is realized if we find progress blocked by forces of institutional inertia and heritage senses of what education should be like.”

      In this chapter,...

  6. Part C: Practices

    • 17 History: The Role of Technology in the Democratization of Learning
      (pp. 197-205)

      The twenty-first century is witnessing a blurring of traditional divisions between the domains of learning, teaching, and research. This change has been spurred, to a large extent, by advances in information technology, which have had far-reaching implications for hardware, software, new pedagogy, access, accessibility, and the collection, application, and distribution of data. The collaborative promise of new technologies and the so-called Semantic Web are uniquely positioned to liberate information, making it available to all citizens and creating a culture of what is coming to be known as ubiquitous learning.

      Underpinning this emerging culture are the huge challenges and the enormous...

    • 18 Computer Science: Pen-Enabled Computers for the ″Ubiquitous Teacher″
      (pp. 206-215)

      The deepest and most difficult kinds of learning require a teacher who understands the student’s struggle to learn. The teacher engages with the student in a beneficial feedback loop, continually probing the student’s progress and adjusting her teaching to the student’s needs. While computers and the Internet make information ubiquitous, they cannot do the same for teachers—there are not enough of them to go around. Making learning truly ubiquitous requires that wemake teachers ubiquitous. The research of my student, Chad Peiper, and I is aimed at using two technologies—pen-enabled computers (specifically, tablet PCs) and computer networks—to...

    • 19 Biology: Using a Ubiquitous Knowledge Environment to Integrate Teaching, Learning, and Research in Biology and Chemistry
      (pp. 216-229)

      Many people wear emblems signifying a belief or set of beliefs, such as a flag lapel pin or a cross on a necklace. For most of my life I have not done so. Like many academics, I felt that things were too complex to be captured in a symbol that encompassed the essence of how I viewed life. Lately however, I have taken to wearing a pin that looks like the one in figure 19.1.

      The fish with limbs, of course, expresses the relatedness, through the evolutionary process, of organisms that live in water and on land. The crescent wrench...

    • 20 Visual Arts: Technology Pedagogy as Cultural Citizenship
      (pp. 230-241)

      Art education in the twenty-first century is an eclectic profession composed of diverse and competing fields of inquiry, a hybridization of studio art practice, critical inquiry, and public engagement, layered with overlapping interests in aesthetic and media literacy; visual, material, and multi-culture; cognitive, emotional, and creative development; school and community relations; and technology. Of particular recent interest to K–12 visual arts educators are the ascent of electronic media in everyday life, the technology behaviors of young people, and questions about how to design visual arts programs of study in a technology-saturated world. Art educators well understand that for the...

    • 21 Writing (1): Writing with Video
      (pp. 242-253)

      The printing press democratized print literacy and in the process gave rise to the modern university; it promoted an expanded universe of knowledge and discourse that could extend beyond medieval monasteries and into the secular world. The availability of printed texts drove the ascension of alphabetic literacy to the point that, until very recently, the common assumption was that to be literate meant the ability to read words on a page. Of course, by the end of the twentieth century it was evident that contemporary literacy was becoming increasingly multimodal and hybridized. Today’s communication landscape is characterized by forms that...

    • 22 Writing (2): Ubiquitous Writing and Learning: Digital Media as Tools for Reflection and Research on Literate Activity
      (pp. 254-264)

      Whether in sociocultural notions of mediated activity and agency (Scollon 2001; Wertsch 1991), the flat dynamic assemblages of actor-network theory (Latour 2005), Hutchins’s (1995) notion of functional systems, or Lave and Wenger’s (1991) account of situated learning, recent theory and research have foregrounded the ubiquitous character of social practice, that is, the ways situated activity inevitably spreads out across time and space. Independently and with colleagues, we have been involved in studying what Prior (1998, 138) termed “literate activity,” that is, activity “not located in acts of reading and writing, but as cultural forms of life saturated with textuality.” Examining...

  7. About the Contributors
    (pp. 265-276)
  8. Index
    (pp. 277-279)
  9. Back Matter
    (pp. 280-282)