I missed attending the first CCK09 Elluminate session on Tuesday evening (past my bedtime here!) and only just caught up with it today.
I picked up on the short discussion on lurking, views on which hosts George Siemens and Stephen Downes seemed to differ slightly. As it appears this year’s students include a few self-confessed lurkers from CCK08 (who seem resolved to participate more this time), it might be interesting to hear their views. But when does a lurker stop becoming a lurker? Through participation yes, but how do we quantify participation and who measures it? George and Stephen? The individual student? Or is it collectively determined somehow by all the students within the course?
Lave and Wenger’s notion of a linear trajectory from the ‘periphery’ to the ‘centre’ of a community (of practice, if you like) through increased participation and identity formation is one way of conceptualizing this. My PhD is partly concerned with how increasingly distributed learner-centred networks may be challenging such community-based concepts of learning. Wenger recognizes most of us engage in (often overlapping) multi-membership, but when the networks of participation and discourse we create become so numerous, complex and disparate, do models such as communities of practice still hold true?
Whilst encouraging individual tool selection and distributed communication, it strikes me that the proposed CCK09 processes of identity tagging and aggregation also reinforce Wenger’s community-based principles of mutual engagement, joint enterprise and shared repertoire.
The next seminar is at the more Eurozone-friendly time of 4pm CST on Thursday September 17.
Lave, J., & Wenger, E. (1991). Situated learning: Legitimate peripheral participation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
Wenger, E. (1999). Communities of Practice: Learning, meaning and identity, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.