Thursday, November 29, 2007

Shorter Stephen Downes

I do not believe in a distinction between "educational resources" and everything else, therefore I do not support your declaration on "open educational resources."

7 comments:

Downes said...

Wow, that manages to elide the whole discussion about institutions, instructor-led pedagogy, commercialism, and everything, without changing the meaning a bit!

Tom Hoffman said...

That's a much less painful rejoinder than I was expecting.

Downes said...

Yeah, it's the newer, nicer Stephen.

Tom Hoffman said...

Seriously though, if you don't accept that distinction, the rest of the discussion is pointless, isn't it?

Gnuosphere said...

Pointless to Stephen, perhaps.

Downes said...

Well no, because the whole discussion isn't simply about resources.

The points I have to make about the roles of 'teacher' and 'student', I think, are applicable whatever you think about educational resources.

Ditto the points I have to make about commercialism (note that both examples I link to are from outside the field of educational resources).

Arguments from outside the field ought to inform debate inside the field. This, always, has been the sticking point in educational theory and practice.

Tom Hoffman said...

For what its worth, it is not that the other points aren't important points by themselves, they're just kind of extraneous if you don't care about the distinction.

For some reason it took me 12 hours to think of the obvious parallels. I've always thought talking about "edupatents" was ridiculous, so I haven't talked about them at all, but if I did, I'd say "there is no reason to talk about this separate from patent policy in general." I'd feel similarly about "free educational software."