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I am now blogging at www.guillaumelerouge.com

Wikis are everywhere. Now that global media institutions have started embracing the phenomenon, wikis have become more than a buzzword. Wikis are at the leading edge of what tomorrow's internet will look like.
Want to start working with the future? This is the place.

2007/03/29

Wikis and e-learning



Thought to become a revolution in the way we teach and learn, e-learning has not yet achieved its full potential. This is due to a lack of understanding of the way people do actually learn. Using a wiki instead of traditional e-learning tools does make a difference. Not convinced yet?

How we do not learn

We (assuming that here "we" refers to us all human beings) do not learn by staring blankly at blackboards. We did not do at school, and we do not either while staring blankly at webpages. We do not learn either by reading ill-written content served in an ill-conceived fashion by a Flash applet. Last but not least, we do not learn while interacting with silly pre-programmed answers offered by a computer, however clever its programmer think they have been.

How we do learn


We learn through our active interaction with people and problems. We learn while we experience interest in the subject of which mastering we are pursuing. We learn when an emotional transfer occurs during the studying process. Which part of your physics 101 course do you remember today: the textbook readings or the fuzzy chemical reactions in the labs? This is what learning is all about: interest for the topic and self-involvement in the learning process.

Learning through a wiki

A wiki offers a platform for clever learning together. The interaction with other people (human beings, not machines) provides us with feedback and new insights. There is additional motivation too, created as a byproduct from the involvement within a community of peers and of area of interest. You do not feel the same emotional bonds for a computer than for other people (At the very least I assume most people do not). There is an acknowledgment of oneself as an human being worth of being talked, discussed and spent time with in the process too.

The core issue? The structure of contemporary e-learning does not match the way we do learn. Inversely, a wiki goes in the right direction since it promotes learning through interaction.


Want more ? Stay tuned.

© Guillaume Lerouge for WikiBC