Social Media and Learning

We are witnessing the emergence of something profound: humans, historically divided by geography, culture and creed, are beginning to connect and collaborate on a scale never seen before. The driving force behind this creative wave are digital tools and networks that allow new forms of collaboration and knowledge creation.

What starts out as social networking is evolving into social production.  We’ve witnessed how self-organizing groups, leveraging social media such as Twitter, Facebook and Wikipedia, have launched revolutions throughout the Arab world and created the most importance reference work in the English language in less than 10 years.

The opening paragraphs from my latest PBS article on the case for using social media in education.



The iPad is helping to launch a revolution in learning and education. While the portability and long battery life are great features, the real benefits are in the touchscreen interface and software. The App Store provides a broad spectrum of applications that appeal to a wide range of learners. We all have idiosyncratic ways of learning, organizing, and demonstrating what we’ve learned. And the iPad is one of the most powerful tools we have in creating a customized learning experience. Historically, there has been a standardized way of learning, organizing, and demonstrating skills and knowledge. As a result, the diversity of human thought and expression was filtered through an educational sieve. While this may have been appropriate for the past, there is increasing evidence that this won’t be tenable for the future. Our digitally networked society is requiring people to apply their idiosyncratic forms of creativity, problem-solving and collaboration to the challenges of our times. The iPad is emerging as one of the most powerful tools we have for learning about and shaping the world we live in.