‘All Your Own Work’ in a Web 2.0 World

I attended an a full day seminar organised by ALSANSW looking at the issue of Plagiarism in light of the NSW Board of Studies unit “Working with Others” soon to be compulsory for testing in Year 10. My task was to provide a context for thinking about plagiarism which included an understanding of the Web 2.0 world of students and teachers.

Apart form ‘showcasing’ Web 2.0 my aim was to encourage teachers and teacher-librarians to re-examine what it means to create a community of enquiry for themselves and for their students…by participating in new forms of information organization and sharing…..like social bookmarking, wiki, and blogs. We have to recognize the level of social networking that kids engage in more and more, and the fact that information seeking will sometimes take place via instant messenger, myspace or other social ways.

With Web 2.0 the purpose and function of learning as defined by teachers needs revision. Maybe……..

The purpose of learning should…

  • Be informed by connections and communication
  • Promote open sharing of knowledge
  • Allow for individuals making decisions on their own

The function of learning should be….

  • About being a member of the community of practice
  • Recognize that all spaces are learning places

Perhaps Web 2.0 learning is defined by three things:

Focus

  • On identity
  • Who we are in society

Framework

  • Multitasking multi-modal environment
  • Virtual learning mode

Future

  • Personal integrity and social contribution
  • Individuality and creativity

A very interesting day, with some curious interactions and comments afterwards. The one that made me chuckle was “we are never going to use these [Web2.0] technologies”.

Hmm, a bit like the network meeting I organised back in Term 4, 1995. Some ‘system’ representatives came along – because I had organised a chap who brought his own computer, and who could access Ozemail at $5.00 hr and show us ‘THE INTERNET’. Yes, these visitors said to me “Judy, you shouldn’t have organised this – this internet business will never happen in schools!”.

OOPS! How about Web 2.0 then??

 

5 thoughts on “‘All Your Own Work’ in a Web 2.0 World

  1. Graham, I actually talked about some of your work in my presentation – particularly your post about discussing ethical usage with the kids mp3 players etc. Now I see that you are exploring further, and find it fascinating that you and others are pushing the boundaries, and trying things out, first for yourself and then also with the kids. Of course, the context of the seminar was for Years 10-12, but the foundations of all this are well and truely laid in the junior years. Get it right then, and understanding will be embedded later on.
    “Research skills in the constantly shifting landscape” – a great title for an article and think tank around this all. Something to tackle I think!

  2. I tried to post this yesterday but your blog didn’ like me and bounced me off! Judy, you’ve got to love those hold-outs who believe that denial is the way to cope with change! Here’s the thoughts that popped into my brain as I read your post particularly in relation to plagiarism which I think is a really tough concept to teach to kids of the primary years. I contrasted in my mind how I’m conducting my action research for my ICT Grant (don’t laugh – I know you’ve got a sizeable academic background) with how I expect my students to conduct their research on their own “personal project” at the moment. I’m using a wiki as the base where I’m listing my questions and directions, using GoogleNotebook to clip key paragraphs and segments of relevant webpages and reflecting on my blog about what I notice as I go along. A student in my class however has a work booklet to record questions in, gathers information in note form or dot points either in the booklet with a pen or in a Word document and has to record sources on a Bibliography page – classic resource based learning methodology. So I really should be getting my students to use the same Web 2.0 tools that I’m accessing to make their research smoother. For example instead of cutting and pasting URL’s like my students, Google NoteBook automatically creates a citation everytime I put something into it. Instead of keeping track of a pile of papers and printouts, I house it all or link from my wiki. The big danger could be teaching these kids research skills that have no relevance in the constantly shifting information landscape. The scary bit? I’m very aware (of Web 2.0 implications) and feeling like I’m straining to keep up – what hope for those educators in denial or ignorance?
    BTW, I downloaded, read and thoroughly enjoyed your SCAN article – I gave a dead tree copy to my teacher-librarian here and I’ll be keen to hear her reactions – especially now Book Week is over!

  3. Marita,
    What great feedback, and thanks for the tip on the podcast. I have captured it already, and will listen to it all – just captured a bit for now.
    It really is amazing, but amazing or not, because it is happening we have to think more about this. What I am even more amazed at is that there are actually people making a living I believe in SecondLife!! as you said. Fancy scripting objects and clothes for people to buy. A virtual fur coat? Wow!
    Judy

  4. Judy, you’ve got to love those hold-outs who believe that denial is the way to cope with change! Here’s the thoughts that popped into my brain as I read your post particularly in relation to plagiarism which I think is a really tough concept to teach to kids of the primary years. I contrasted in my mind how I’m conducting my action research for my ICT Grant (don’t laugh – I know you’ve got a sizeable academic background) with how I expect my students to conduct their research on their own “personal project” at the moment. I’m using a wiki as the base where I’m listing my questions and directions, using GoogleNotebook to clip key paragraphs and segments of relevant webpages and reflecting on my blog about what I notice as I go along. A student in my class however has a work booklet to record questions in, gathers information in note form or dot points either in the booklet with a pen or in a Word document and has to record sources on a Bibliography page – classic resource based learning methodology. So I really should be getting my students to use the same Web 2.0 tools that I’m accessing to make their research smoother. For example instead of cutting and pasting URL’s like my students, Google NoteBook automatically creates a citation everytime I put something into it. Instead of keeping track of a pile of papers and printouts, I house it all or link from my wiki. The big danger could be teaching these kids research skills that have no relevance in the constantly shifting information landscape. The scary bit? I’m very aware (of Web 2.0 implications) and feeling like I’m straining to keep up – what hope for those educators in denial or ignorance?
    BTW, I downloaded, read and thoroughly enjoyed your SCAN article – I gave a dead tree copy to my teacher-librarian here and I’ll be keen to hear her reactions – especially now Book Week is over!

  5. Judy, after hearing your presentation yesterday it was spooky to listen to Background Briefing this morning (Loot: real money in virtual worlds) which among many other interesting things, showed how people are prepared to buy ‘gold’ to use in online games because they don’t have time to acquire it themselves. Others are making a fortune developing property and other products in virtual worlds like Second Life. ‘Gold farmers’ in developing countries are playing games with the sole object of acquiring goods to sell. The game owners are threatening to sue as many of these acts contravene the agreements players tick when they join up, but it seems none have been game to try. What would happen if the courts decided the players were entitled to own their acquired objects? Really blurs the ethical area for teaching kids about plagiarism.
    You can listen to the program here:
    http://www.abc.net.au/rn/backgroundbriefing/stories/2006/1720891.htm (It will be podcast in a day or so)

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