Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Twenty Minutes Not Wasted: How to Teach the Big Picture

Super great TED talk just up:




Now, I know you are going to think I am excited at the technological possibilities mentioned at the end--the ones for integrating many peoples into an Open Education experience. Or maybe you think I am worked up about the continuing relevance and power of LECTURE, even in the largest of groups. And, yes, that did totally work me up. BUT more hot than that was the wonderful teachable moment which shows to our students the relevance (that word again) of anthropology. It is so easy to add Anthropology into the mix here. Or add this into a course on Anthropology. Fundamentally, we want students to understand that the people's of the world are our window into viewing the different possibilities of the essence of an idea. What is marriage? How are differing views of its essence reckoned by the full spectrum of humanity? Way cool and, totally, usable for Distantly Learning.

Oh, and check out Michael Sandel's website at www.justiceharvard.org. He has a talk on cannibalism http://www.justiceharvard.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=11&Itemid=8which I am off to watch. You know how we Anthropologists love a good cannibalism lecture (stereotype alert).

3 comments:

stayforaspell said...

After this past week I see "relevance" that is very implementable through current platforms on the internet. I am a distance learner at the undergrad level(residing in Europe) and am still hopeful that DL can be more personal, more engaging, and more financially approachable than it already is. I am impressed with the possibilities on academia.edu, foremost for the open sharing of questions and research papers that are free (no journal fees) and completely relevant. Is this academic freedom? Can lecturers use networking platforms like academia.edu to have live (or asynchronous) debates with students like myself, not expecting something in return? My academic contribution is thus far nil (although I am sincerely trying as an ANTH major) and I continue to wonder about the basic motivations that influence the decisions teachers make. Certainly "respect" is not enough and even Aristotle had perks? Thoughts?

larry c wilson said...

And in what language would this global class be conducted?

stayforaspell said...

Classes would be in the language of the individual lecturer. If a teacher can work in 3 languages, then they would be adding to the cultural diversity of the environment. If a student is monolingual, then (s)he would be able to choose from lectures in only that language. This is where it pays off to have several languages in your bag of tricks. Of course, the site could be localized for each language, but then I am not sure if politics would be able to stay the hell away from it all. Still thinking about the "how to pay the teachers?" part...