Everything is Blended Learning
Prof. Michalis Xenos University of Patras, Greece
In this keynote presentation we will look at the statement that Everything is Blended Learning, where we will discuss recent research by the speaker and others about educational technologies. To then argue that the modern educational technologies have blurred the distinction between campus-based and distance learning to the extent that formal education today is, in most cases, blended learning. We will discuss educational technologies from early tools to today’s innovations including, inter alia, Personal Learning Environments, Social Learning Networks, Game Based and Enhanced Learning, Virtual Learning Environments, Virtual Classrooms, LMSs and MOOCs. And to further discuss best practices and we will present challenges for future research in educational technologies.
Education is too Important to still Teach like we’re in the Middle Ages
Carlos Delgado Kloos, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Spain
Education is key to prosperity and welfare; however, we are not exploiting the full power of the tools available. Where other industries have embraced the most recent technologies and changed dramatically, education is somewhat stuck in the past. The MOOC movement has given an attention call of what is possible marrying technology and education. However, MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) and SPOCs (Small Private Online Courses) are not the end, but the beginning of a route to redefining education by changing all possible parameters. It is time to get rid of prejudices and established structures and advance towards a more efficient and meaningful education with the help of technology.
Learning Affordances of Virtual Reality
Dr.Anastasios (Tassos) Mikropoulos The Educational Approaches to Virtual Reality Lab, University of Ioannina, Greece
Virtual Reality (VR) contributes to the instructional and learning processes because of the unique affordances and their subsequent learning affordances they offer. These learning affordances imply certain actions namely instructional and learning activities. The affordances of VR are assembled as multisensory intuitive and real time interaction; immersion; presence; autonomy; natural semantics for the representation of objects inside the virtual environments and worlds; users’ representation through avatars; first-person user point of view; first-order experiences; size in space and time; transduction and reification. These imply the learning affordances of free navigation, creation, modeling and simulation, multichannel communication, collaboration and cooperation and content presentation and delivery. This work presents the learning affordances of VR and proposes the general learning activities’ types coming from them. These are content creation, content exploration and interaction with content, social interaction, gaming, participation in representations of real life events and situations and indicate the potential uses of VR in education.