Keeping the learning in learning objects

Mason, Robin and Rehak, D (2003). Keeping the learning in learning objects. In: Littlejohn, A ed. Reusing online resources: a sustainable approach to e-learning. London: Kogan Page, pp. 20–34.



Recognising the fact that learning objects are still a new concept, D. Rehak and R. Mason have tackled the significant issue of how to make learning objects work in practice in a very interesting and thorough manner. They clearly state that the topic of learning objects is rather new and in an experimental phase. There is an agreement about the attributes of a learning object (reusability, accessibility, interoperability-portability, duration) within the learning technology community. However, stakeholders see the usefulness of learning objects from different optical angles: on the one hand, the training sector tends to be engaged in reuse and just-in-time/on-demand content aggregation in order to augment their market share; on the other hand universities and the learning sector in general, consider the reuse and repurposing of learning material as a big opportunity to save resources as well as to offer new (more enhanced) learning experiences.
The authors analyse the concept of learning objects in five stages which are common for new concepts in any domain. Along the presentation of these stages (confusions, stakeholders, precedents, investigations of how to apply and exploit, acceptance), they pinpoint several crucial issues that need to be tackled in order that the learning process will take benefit of the notion of learning objects.

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