Books

Teaching Crowds

2023: How Education Works: Teaching, Technology & Technique: Coming to AU Press in Spring ’23, this is a book about the nature of technology, and the nature of education viewed as a deeply distributed technological entanglement in which we are all co-participants, simultaneously teachers and learners. Because pedagogies are soft technologies, meaning that they mainly consist of gaps to be filled with individuals’ (many individuals’) techniques, the underlying message and conclusion of the book is that what matters most is not what you do, but how you do it.Β  Among many implications of the theory it presents are that reductive science, automation, and randomized controlled tests should play, at most, very minor bit-player roles in education and educational research; and that methods of teaching, media and tools are just components of an assembly, so what matters most is the enactment or performance of that assembly, not the parts. For an overview of the theory and a few more of its implications, see my paper, Educational technology: what it is and how it works.

2014:Β Teaching Crowds: Learning & Social Media (co-authored with Terry Anderson): an in-depth look at ways crowds can teach and how to teach crowds, from small groups to millions.

Control & Constraint in e-learning 2007: Control & Constraint in E-Learning: Choosing When to Choose (terrible title, important content). Explores the nature of control in online learning and is a sustained argument for social media that make use of collective intelligence to support learning.

 

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