Digital Pedagogy, Play, and Mass Collaboration

Digital Pedagogy, Play, and Mass Collaboration
Monday, November 12, 2012 - 1:30pm to 3:00pm

Co-sponsored by GreaterThanGames and the PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge

Please join us for an event on MOOCs (Massively Open Online Courses) and play in education with Pete Rorabaugh (English, Georgia State University; @allistelling) and Jesse Stommel (English & Digital Humanities, Marylhurst University; @jessifer), editors of the journal Hybrid Pedagogy. Adeline Koh (Literature, Richard Stockton College & 2012-13 Humanities Writ Large Visiting Faculty Fellow) will moderate.  We’ll be livestreaming the event on the FHI Youtube channel, and everyone is encouraged to watch and take part via the Twitterstream: hashtag #dukehp.
This summer Hybrid Pedagogy ran the experimental course, MOOC MOOC, a mini-MOOC, a meta-MOOC, a MOOC about MOOCs. The course was announced in the Hybrid Pedagogy article, “The March of the MOOCs: Monstrous Open Online Courses,” in which Jesse argues, “Content and learning are two separate things, often at odds…  Most content is finite and contained; whereas, learning is chaotic and indeterminate. It’s relatively easy to create technological infrastructures to deliver content, harder to build relationships and learning communities to help mediate, inflect, and disrupt that content.”While institutions ponder how to make excursions into new media more efficient and profitable, the pedagogues at the digital table must push the other side of the envelope. We should be creating critical and reflective sandboxes that invite learners to set their own goals, make mistakes, collaborate, and improvise.
In Deep Play, Diane Ackerman writes, “We may think of play as optional, a casual activity. But play is fundamental to evolution” (4). George Dennison offers a similar account of play in The Lives of Children, in which he describes “children’s natural play” as “expansive and diverse, alternately intense and gay,” whereas more formal play (games with umpires, rules, etc.) becomes “strained and silent,” “serious,” and “uncomfortable” (195-196).
An attachment to outcomes discourages experimentation. In “Organic Writing and Digital Media: Seeds and Organs,” Pete argues that “process takes precedence over the product.” This talk will emphasize the ways that play can function not as a methodological approach toward a set of outcomes but as the outcome in and of itself. We will open a conversation about how social media and digital space make learning voracious and lively by inviting new (and often wild) modes of interaction.

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