Learning cultures in online education

Goodfellow, Robin; Hewling, Anne and Macfadyen, Leah (2008). Learning cultures in online education. In: Sixth International Conference on Networked Learning 2008, 5-6 May 2008, Halkidiki, Greece.

URL: http://www.networkedlearningconference.org.uk/past...


This paper introduces the theme of culture in online learning and reviews some of the research in this field to date. It identifies and critiques a tendency to view culture solely as an attribute of individuals inherited from national characteristics, and the problem for online learning solely as one of appropriate design for cultural difference. A forthcoming collection of research is described, which problematises the essentialist view of culture and explores issues around the negotiation of 'learning cultures' specific to online environments. Two directions for future research are proposed: one involves the switching of attention away from the generalised characteristics of local consumers of global online learning products, and on to their possibilities for re-purposing these products; the other involves the investigation of learners' uses of the social web and the attitudes to learning that this is becoming associated with.

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