Artifacts on: a participatory learning culture

5. Check out this SlideShare Presentation: on Participatory Learning Culture
6View application of participatory learning through a collaborative team project for course HMLC5303, Learning Communities and Social pedagogical Networks on Integrating Technology7.  Another product of collaborative effort for course HMID5003: Principles and Practices of Instructional Design: Personal Learning Environment  
Reflections: The above presentation and team projects provide evidence on the value of participatory learning, aptly stated through the notion that: 'people learn better by sharing information.'  Such a view is well-supported by opener 6 discussed by Bonk (2009), The World is Open. The opener addresses an important issue for us in developing countries, that of co-constructing knowledge to share with the world rather than consuming knowledge developed elsewhere.The presentation is a synthesis of Chapter 7, drawing upon current trends, issues, themes and debates raised, then presented in the form of slides uploaded into Slideshare.

Upon reflection, my deeply held views on educational issues were challenged during team projects, which was 'painful' at the time until later I appreciated the benefits of cultural diversity in the approach of learning design. Such challenges have yielded positive results in terms of accommodating multiple views which in the end helps to enhance the quality of the learning process and products. 
Presentation Outline: is based on Instructional Design (ID) principle of identifying my target audience as educators looking into integrating technology into teaching and learning. To motivate them to be keen to follow this presentation, I designed overarching questions that will guide the presentation as shown in Slide 2.
In the next slides, the key issue is the benefit of collective intelligence (or some kind of cross-fertilization of ideas), as evidenced by Collectives and Networks such as Wikipedia, YouTube, TeacherTube, Slashdot, Digg and Scribd.
Overarching Lessons: The main lesson for me has been to appreciate the power of the participatory learning culture that hinges on active learner participation in Open Information Communities, as contributors of knowledge, which is quite unusual in my context. This has changed the way I learn as well as the way I approach the design of learning materials for distance education students at the University of Swaziland, where I work.

I now value team work not only among the course team members but perhaps most importantly in ensuring that a rather more emergent design is followed to allow for learners to also co-construct their learning activities.

Perhaps the most critical lesson is to learn 'how to learn with others', rather than only from independent learning, while also benefitting from collaborative learning within a personalised learning environment. Therefore I concur with Hodgson (2005) that much as  reaching consensus is valuable through collaborative learning, we should also accommodate differences within our multiple communities.