Sunday, August 31, 2008

Mind Over Matter – How Technology Matters

Mind Over Matter – How Technology Matters
The Science of learning when technology matters
Presenter - Professor Martin Westwell
26 August 2008 - UNSW

How do we turn information into knowledge? It’s the interconnecting of the information which makes it knowledge - GCSE Coursework, essays and projects for a small membership fee.

Impact of Information Technology = Question Rich/Answer Poor has moved to Question Poor/Answer Rich

Socialisation rather an information gathering is the primary use of the internet.

Online Society – more social, reinforce social links, extrovert, ‘happy’, versus: withdrawn, break social ties, isolated, depressed.

Technology – it’s not the technology that changes the way you think – it’s about you and what you do with it – access to extremes of behaviour – it’s what you do with the technology which makes the difference.

A particular technology can not change the way that we think – it’s what we do with the technology which will change a behaviour – if you are surrounded by violence then you are more likely to be violent – it’s a ‘survival’ technique – to protect yourself against the violence.

Sheese & Graziano 2005, Psychological Science – Changing young minds
Sheese, B. E., & Graziano, W. G. (2005). Deciding to defect: The effects of video game violence on cooperative and competitive behavior. Psychological Science. 16(5), 391-396 - Interesting research about the whether the internet has an effect on children’s daily lives.

Developing Skills – Hybrid laparoscopy training system (video & real) Rosse et al 2007, Archives of Surgery – single biggest factor was their ‘video game skill’ – how well they played video games like ‘Super Monkey Ball 2. The virtual space of a video game is very similar to that of laparoscopy.

When video games have a high demand capacity for attention it develops attentional capacity. This can also cause children to be more ‘distractable’ as they pick up on the distractables.

Manipulating the environment: executive functions – is absolutely crucial in how we function – the measure of a 10 year old’s executive functions are a better indication of their earning capacity at 30 years old, then their numeracy score. The ability to be process focused rather then output/product focused is far more beneficial.

Executive Function Development – by changing the ‘environment’ you can change genetic defects ie ‘use it or lose it’ re an enriched environment to stimulate the brain can prolong genetic defects like Huntington’s Disease – multi-sensory environment – relevant – emotional content – interpersonal interaction: interdependent learning, parental engagement – exercise – nutrition/hydration – blue light (natural light esp in the morning and late-night TV) – enriched environments

“Executive FunctionA cluster of high-order capacities, which include selective attention, behavioural planning and response inhibition, the manipulation of information in problem-solving tasks, and the regulation of behaviour.”

Neuromyths – Visual/Auditory/Kinetic learning styles vs how the information is distributed around the brain;

What is education for? Light a candle vs fill a bucket – we can over-enrich an environment

FutureLab Report 2006 – Modern education is experiencing unprecedented levels of change and has been for some time.

Dealing with the complexity of change – specialized proficiency, multi-disciplinary teams, communication – we don’t want all educators to know everything

Limitation through categorization.

Entity vs Incremental intelligence – and how this effects people’s views of their own intelligence

Project Implicit: Educational resource and research site for investigations in implicit social cognition. Includes online tests for implicit preferences for racial groups …

How ‘Brainology’ can make your children ambigious -

Executive Functions – the way we control our thoughts / actions - decision making, planning, attention, working memory, inhibition, introspection, shifting – Automatic human processes vs controlled/consciences human processes – we are ‘wired’ in a way which allows us to control what we do and how we do it.

Educational domains – creativity, learning to learn, early years, gifted and talented, adolescent, digital tech attention …. And executive functions.

Tools of the Mind – The Vygotshkian Approach to Early Childhood Experiences – to help young children develop their executive functioning skills

Shift towards character/value education around the planet – breakdown of social values through a range of different circumstances means that we need to focus more explicitly on our Executive Functions.

Explicitly incorporating executive functions will provide a ‘double whammy’ – through the ‘primary’ and ‘secondary’ messages.

Mind over Matters – the Science of work when technology matters

Preparation for now – preparation for the future = capabilities and capacities – duality of purpose of education – preparing people for today, but also preparing people for the unpredictable future.

What do we value in our workforce? What skills do we currently have? Where are the opportunities for development?

Artisanal knowledge – ‘expertise’

Our decision making is affected by our environmental experiences – and sometimes we have no control over these decision and the environmental influences.

Virtual distances: physical distance, operational distance, affinity distance – Managing the Virtual Workforce.

The richness of digital media increases the effectiveness of social interaction in a virtual environment - the process by which two people are communicating achieves a shared sense of understanding, particularly in conversation.

Hewlett Packard are starting to develop a physical-virtual you to reduce the virtual distance between people

More assessment of the learning process is required in our educational systems, rather than just the output/product….

Our natural response to avoid ambiguity can inhibit innovation and leadership

Creativity = imagination which is meaningful, and when we do something about it/make it a reality = innovation

The important thing in science is not so much to obtain new facts as to discover new ways of thinking about them – William Henry Bragg 1862 -1942

Sir Ken Robinson: Do Schools kill creativity:

Dr Paul Howard Jones – Fostering Creative Thinking –

Literacy, identity, culture in a web 3.0 world?

Presenter - Victoria Carrington
22/08/08 - UniSA

We live in a ‘beta’ culture – everything is still in progress and its messy.

Crisis creates change.

Web 3.0 - Ubiquitous connectivity, semantics, ‘beta’ culture.

Mentoring and scaffolding – informal learning – collaborating.

Web 2.0 / 3.0 is allowing ‘online’ Community of Practice.

This is stuff people have always done – it’s just that they can share it now online.

Web 2.0 allows people to construct and rehearse their identity

Virtual Worlds – as a part of the Web 3.0 – it’s about being ‘together’.

Virtual Worlds for young people
10 and under - Neopets, BarbieGirls (branded), WebKinz, Club Penguin
20 and under – WeeWorld (mirror of actual world), Habbo, Gaia, Club Penguin, Whyville (educational)

Second Life (role play)

Virtual Worlds allow endless customization – consumption/consumer activity

DIY virtual worlds: Cyworld (South Korea) – like social networking sites – powerful pedagogic work

Participatory culture – play, performance, simulation, appropriation, multitasking, distributed cognition, collective intelligence, judgement, networking, negotiation (Jenkins et al 2006)

In order to function effectively you need to be able to engage in a range of ‘text’ – we are a text based culture – you need to be able to learn digital literacy skills in the actual digital world – education needs to engage with the digital environment to be effectively teaching these skills

Participatory predatory – model of literacy – participatory culture

Skills Recognition - Small Business Solutions

Presenter - John Tucker
Qld State Manager, Small Business Solutions
13/08/08 – Pavilion on the Park
SA Workplace Assessors Network Relaunch Breakfast

What is the role and purpose or a modern VET practitioner?
How is it different to a traditional teacher?
Is your RTO business currently driven by a demand model or a supply model?

TAFEs are operating in a supply model – this is what we offer – but needs to move to a demand model – offer what’s needed in the training market – this will take a significant shift.

Do you need to speak English to complete a skills recognition process in a VET Business Qualification?

Is it possible to recognize competencies and coach, mentor or help a client at the same time? That is, to do two things at once?

A change in focus from RTOs:
- Courses for Sale to Job Solutions
- Fixed Product List to Tailored Solutions
- Supply Driven to Demand Driven

Small Business Solutions is a product mixing business mentoring to support small business owners with a seamless qualification outcome – present two products together to small business – offer them a way of improving their business – and at the same time provide a qualification – seamlessly.

Business Owners want:
- one on one mentoring – someone to come to them
- real tangible benefits to the business
- small business means small budget

Small Business Solutions mentors are real life small business experts with whom small business owners can identify with. Credibility of the business mentor is paramount. Mentors with English as a Second Language is beneficial to deal with businesses from different cultural backgrounds. Business mentors also have an ‘assessor’s’ hat whilst they are mentoring the business owners. The mentoring solution must also need to be able to offer skills gap training. This system recognizes that this skills gap training is not always formal training – offer a range of small business training options through other a ‘training events’ calendar of their website.

Challenges faced by Small Business Solutions:
- Commercially focused mentors need to be skilled in assessment
- Clients are not qualifications focused particularly at the start
- Finding the right funding model

Offering recognition processes for a Certificate IV in Small Business Management

Skilling Solutions offer training vouchers which can be used to partly pay for the process.

Features of this model
- Mentors are the assessors
- Educational quality is the responsibility of the educational facilitators in conjunction with the assessor
- Tailored to the individual’s need

This system offers a great way of interacting with industry.

The initial profiling of the small business owner helps determine whether they will be able to gain recognition – if not – directed into training.

This service is customer centric.

Skills First RPL Resources
Skills First RPL Assessor Kits