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My Second Paper (NoT™)

November 6, 2008

This non-credit paper will not make use of references. A reader may Google the following if required:   connectivism, connectionism, eliminative materialism, materialsim, Karl Popper, Maverick Philosopher blog, behaviourism, operant conditioning, Churchland, Dennett, learning theory, pedagogy etc. 


This paper will discuss the role of educators in the current age (Aquarius). In order to properly position the role, it is instructive to consider the context in which we are placed. This context considers the rise of conflicting world-views, and perhaps confusion over the perceived emergence of new learning theories. It is imperative to link the role of educators with learning theory and pedagogy.

The following observation is adopted as the basis for discussing educators roles: 

C = (c + OC).  where

C = Connectivism, c = connectionism, OC = Operant Conditioning.

This mindmap displays the connections between these items and behaviourism, which is oberved to be the both the system from which C has emerged, and the learning theory under which C is placed.  C then, is a pedagogy, a method by which to achieve learning outcomes.

Learning outcomes within the pedagogy of C demand the creation and expansion of networks, as knowledge is contained within the connections made through this process, according to this pedagogy. In an educational system, a primary desire is to increase, share and evaluate knowledge. The role then of an educator, when utilizing the pedagogy of C (also known as the Tao of Connectivisim – ToC) is to guide the learner towards the learning outcome of network creation, expansion and management. Network management is akin to knowledge management, as knowledge resides in the network connections, according to the principles of C.

Network creation and expansion relies on the linkages from nodes to nodes. These linkages can be characterized as the pipe. The pipe is analogous to the ability to make connections of nodes; it may be thought of as the ether or wiring than exists between and enables the connections to take place. Knowledge, in the C tradition, occurs in the connections that have been established between nodes through the ether or wiring enabler. Flow refers to the connections occuring within the pipe.

Included within this role are these fundamental requirements (curriculum)

1.  Pipe handling, access and mechanics

It is critical that the learner understand the function, utility and capability of the pipe, along with learning the skill of connecting via the pipe. Moving up Blooms taxonomy, it will become valuable for learners to use creativity in pipe handling. The educators role in this is to ensure this understanding occurs, while ensuring that he/she not interfere excessively with the flow. 

2. Pipe care and maintenance

It is critical that the learner understand and follow the principles of good pipe maintenance – e.g. the care and handling of the pipe. Included in this context would be such items as:  

  • pipe size (size matters)
  • pipe troubleshooting
  • dysfunctional pipe remedies

3. Flow Dynamics

Traditional education has been concerned with content delivery, where content is somewhat synonymous with knowledge. In C, knowledge is in the connections of nodes, and content is no longer a consideration. Since flow is the connections within the pipe, i.e. knowledge in motion, it is critical that educators and institutions focus on teaching pipe mechanics and stay out of the flow.

From → Uncategorized

  1. Hi Ken!

    Good! I wish I could get rid of the citations and references which so far hinder my possibilities to write the 2nd paper. I had to laugh with the subsequent cough attack while reading, it was worth. 🙂

    You seem to enjoy equations! Could you explain to me, whenever you have time please, why size is important while our beloved C claims that the pipe is not important? I wish I had more online academic background to understand things better.

    Thanks for your comment in my blog!

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