Saturday, February 2, 2013

Hermeneutical Challenges in Unstructured Learning Environments

You are looking at a screen. This screen is not the absolute of your life, there are other things going on behind that screen and behind your head. You may be aware of this issue. So what does this have to do with GEDI? Simple, you are judging this blog, the author/publisher, and all elements related to the dissemination of the said author/publisher's thought. But how are you judging this post? Is it a good post? What if the diction read differently. Are you one to hate mispellings and grammar, errors? What about the use of specific words? I know I hate the word "guts," it literally makes me feel queasy. If I read a blog that has that word, I get sick. How do you think that hypothetical author's work is going to be judged by me? How about we go even further. What screen are you looking at? Is it one of those expensive screens that says droid when it lights up? Or are you broke and looking at this in the library? How do you think that is going to affect the review of the material? Richy, with a three grand phone is probably going to have different objective standards than the person who ate cat food for lunch. What is the weather like when you are reading this blog? Do you hear anything? Are you racist? Do you have a driver's license? When is the last time you bought shoes? Do people even read blogs the same as they do, say a magazine? Most student papers can be assumed to be black ink on a piece of papyrus that is about 8.5 by 11 inches. This is a screen. The "newness" of blogs is alluring, but it seems to me that they present to much unknown for everyone involved, leading to potential student troubles related to questionable posts and end of semester grades. This is my problem with having free range learning with limited structure and the item of blogs in particular. Review, at least the bureaucratic sort we force students to go through at Virginia Tech, requires placing students in categories of merit. We wax about how the goal is for students to learn and that failure is ok, but that is false. The student may be taking out huge sums of money for an education. Failure represents a monetary loss for the student. Without a guaranteed plan for success, the investment potential from the class is diminished or completely non-existent. As the university is a corporation, it probably wants its endeavors to be economically feasible (at least for Virginia Tech). With no way to guarantee future results for the student, even heightening the students financial risk, the course becomes less marketable in the long term. Why would the University want to keep the program on payroll. You have probably gone back to facebook stalking.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! This presents an interesting perspective- one's learning and opinions are based on so many geo-socio-economic factors. It is great that you also brought forth the issue of economic dagger that hangs over heads of most students, and how economic considerations often restrict the decisions and efforts of a university.
    Now, here is where blogging might help everyone out. It is light- both on economy and freedom for mind. With new connections developing on blogsphere, and super-fast exchange of ideas - blogging might very well become part of 'guaranteed plan of success'.