EdTech 504 has strengthened my understanding of educational theory outside of the traditional three: behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism. While I am not sure that it has changed my style of teaching or professional practice, I can say with certainty that I have new knowledge of today’s educational climate. Evaluating the emerging theories opened my mind to how theory should and is changing with the needs of students. This understanding is probably the most significant thing that I learned. Connectivism, in general, expanded my understanding of technology usage in the classroom. It is still something that requires a great deal of brainstorming in terms of implementation; however, as our current technology-centered society continues, I believe that Connectivism will rise and gain more traction in the education world.
Connectivism was a real “a-ha” moment for me, and funnily enough, learning about it in this class has given me a “leg-up” in some of my other summer classes. My idea of a network and the definition of an expert totally changed after researching Connectivism. It really put into perspective how our students’ minds are working now and how, with guidance and scaffolding, we (teachers) can prepare them for their future. While I believe that the idea of Connectivism will arise more and more in education, I also believe that it will take some trial-and-error for teachers to fully embrace it and see it for its potential rather than its complete upheaval of the old system.
As mentioned, I am taking other classes this summer with BSU and learning about Connectivism in this first 7-weeks has helped me understand its discussion in my two 10-week classes. I think that the knowledge and research developed in this class has given me a “leg-up” as well as helped me to find better resources for my other classes. I am still unsure how Connectivism will play out in my current professional setting. My school is limited in its technology; however, I can definitely see how it would have positively impacted my online classes if I were still teaching in that format.
Upon reflection of my assignments and activities in this class and the AECT standards, I found that the standards most demonstrated in this class are 1 and 5. Particularly with my annotated bibliography assignment and the research assignment, AECT standard 5, as it relates to conducting research, using research methodologies, and applying those methodologies to a line of inquiry. The discussions we participated in seem to fit AECT standard 1, as we had to ethically and effectively collaborate with people using our Moodle learning environment. Also, defining Educational Technology itself demonstrated mastery of both AECT standards 1 and 5, as we utilized research and background knowledge to express understanding of the concept.