Seamless learning

Current thinking in learning design 1 Comment

Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas any more.”  [Dorothy has just arrived in Oz, looking around and awed at the beauty and splendor]. Source

Professor Mike Keppell Executive Director and Professor Australian Digital Futures Institute, Research and Innovation Division at the University of Southern Queensland has written a paper on Personalised Learning Strategies for Higher Education

Professor Keppell writes a great piece about personalized learning, however it was the item on “seamless learning”, that grabbed my attention.

Kuh (1996) coined the term seamless learning and suggested that “the word seamless suggests that what was once believed to be separate, distinct parts (e.g., in-class and out-of-class, academic and non academic, curricular and co-curricular, or on-campus and off-campus experiences) are now of one piece, bound together so as to appear whole or continuous” (p.136).

Seamless learning is about “connecting learning across settings, technologies and activities” (Sharples et al, 2012). Think of continuity, fluidity across settings or spaces whether physical, virtual or blended spaces (Sharples et al, 2012; Keppell & Riddle, 2012). Think of the transition from primary to secondary school, to university and to the workplace (Keppell, 2014).

The idea of seamless learning in a digital world makes even more sense. Is there a reason why students can’t move through their learning environments where technology is supported throughout? Where all the work completed from primary school to secondary school, to university, to the workplace and beyond has been captured and transfers across boundaries and into lifelong learning? Many questions but not enough answers yet.

Seeking that seamless transition even between university and the workplace has been a challenge for many. Professor Keppell writes a compelling piece about seamless learning across universities, across campuses, across the world. Definitely worth a read.

Image source: Ruby slippers by Chris Evans on Wikimedia Commons  (CC BY 2.0)

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Leigh Blackall

I recognise the Cities of Learning project as one that proposes an infrastructure of seamless learning.