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Don't Believe Everything You Read... (particularly pithy quotes)

Don't Believe Everything You Read... (particularly pithy quotes) | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it

My first thought when I read this quote was "what a lovely font for a statement that is so simplistic as to be damaging."   Yes you can be both--although the some would argue that being over dressed or over educated is better than the being inappropriately dressed or under education.  Forgetting about outfits for a second, what are the ramifications of being 'overeducated'? In my opinion we should never stop learning--but whether or not that learning comes from what we understand as 'education' is a huge head-scratcher for me.  I have known some of the most well-read, thoughtful people....people who are kind, make a difference in their communities, read voraciously and think deeply...and their education level is not what we have started to consider the gold standard: the terminal degree.  On the other side, I have met pompous, full-of-themselves, mean-spirited, arrogant, condescending folks in my travels through higher education...and so many of these are people carry Ph.D. or Ed. D. after their names.   This is a generalization of course, but there is such a push for degree inflation that we are missing the point--we want our citizenry to be learned, deep-thinkers, problem-solvers and innovators.  And despite popular conception, you don't need a terminal degree to be any of these things,.  Yes, education is important...but how much is necessary to acquire critical thinking, acceptance of diversity, love of learning, etc. has never been proven.  So yes, Virginia, you can be overeducated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Community of Practice for the global workplace

Community of Practice for the global workplace | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
How to Harness Knowledge and Expertisee with Communitis of Practice: Can Communities of Practice still provide the silver bullet for the global workplace?
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

Communities of practice have always been the 'gold standard' in higher education...you bring a group together from across the institution, with a task(s) and they go to work on it like a mountain of army ants.   One thing that this article seems to overlook is that communities of practice organically happen all the time, but they are not recognized as such.  CoP have been in fashion for quite a while in education, but when applying the basic theoretical underpinnings to a more corporate or business model could be very powerful because often where CoP's often fall down in education is that they spiral in process and may emerge with a product.  If not, then the CoP members all walk away with experience, but the ripple affect is no there..

I would add one thing to this article it would be to take an environmental scan and see what ad hoc CoPs already exist in the organization.  If you can locate them, don't break them up, sit with them and find out what they bring to the organization and see if there might be a way to strategically add some people who may need to be at the table.

 

I believe in the power of the CoP, but I think there is a really key matter and that is that the leader should be chosen carefully and have an insclusive bent.  The leader of the CoP does not (perhaps should not) be manager or upper leadership, but instead someone respected from the ranks. 

 

Communities of Practice can be very powerful subgroups in the workforce--they can be innovative, brainstorming, problem-solving, implementation, or any other kind of group that might be needed.  They can also act as your organization's  'think tank' meeting regularly to just brain storm about strengths, weaknesses, future vision, etc. of the organization.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The intersection of information and learning.

The intersection of information and learning. | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

To me, the third caption would be the process of 'meaning making' that is almost impossible to see happen.  Sometimes, as teachers, you do get the reward of seeing an 'aha' moment when students not only see how information and knowledge connects, but also watch them relate it to something meaningful in their own lives and experiences.  As someone who has delivered teaching, training and professional development the making of meaning is the epitome of what it means to truly learn.   Would love to hear your opinion!

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The Worst Thing You Can Do to Your Brain

The Worst Thing You Can Do to Your Brain | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
(And Vice Versa)The brain hasn't ever been unimportant, but it has risen to new heights in an age where neuroscience and genetics are sharply focused on it. We are gaining so much insight into brain
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

Deepak Chopra, whether you follow him or not, has a really amazing grasp on how the brains works and how we can improve our own thinking.   This article was a quick read, but had some gems that we need to all consider when it comes to learning and teaching.  Chopra’s theory of ‘stuckness’ is really, from an epistemological point of view, is an example of an immature way of thinking that is all too popular in our schools and with our students. In the epistemology literature college freshman tend to report that they believe that knowledge has limits, comes from authority/experts and they are not able to able to create original or new theories.  These findings are aligned with Chopra’s theory of ‘stuckness’.  The most compelling part of ‘stuckness’, at  least to me, is the fact that we aren’t taught, often until well into college,  to question authority when it comes to we are being taught.  Asking the basic questions of ‘who, what, and why’ of what information we are being taught should start when we are really young and would be a huge help in avoiding the ‘stuckness’ or cognitive laziness that is rampant.  The other thing we aren’t taught is what pieces are missing from the information we’re learning.  Take history for example—did you have a history teacher who told you what’s contained in the history books is not the whole truth?  For many years we have learned from history textbooks, but rarely were we made aware that history is, in reality, a collection of stories told from particular points of view and there are things *not* being relayed in those stories.  Authors have agendas, editing constraints, and a host of other things that limit how much can be included, making the question of ‘what isn’t being included?’ that much more important.


According to Chopra there are daily practices that can increase our epistemological maturity and keep our thinking flexible.  Interestingly these bullets have some seminal tenets that they share, including self-awareness of our own prejudices, negative/ingrained beliefs; seeking out opinions, communication and points of views from the widest circle of people possible; and to never forget that learning is a lifelong process that happens daily.  Even when we believe we reached ‘expert’ status in an area, there are still new things to be learned.


Chopra goes on to say that when we give in to the laziness/stuckness, we are compromising the quality of our future learning experiences.  Simply put the future of our life experiences depend the commitment we make to practice vigilance in our thinking today.


Thanks to Deepak Chopra and Linked In for the Scoop!

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diane gusa's comment, May 17, 2014 10:03 AM
woW Lynne I can now benefit hearing your insights here too!
diane gusa's curator insight, May 17, 2014 10:09 AM

"When you are stuck, the following results build up over time:

You act thoughtlessly.You become blind to new input.You accept old output without question.Your brain keeps imprinting its old wiring deeper and deeper.You lose self-awareness."
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Lost Pinup - Timeline Photos

Lost Pinup - Timeline Photos | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it

Thanks Contextualposts.com

Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

While this quote can be taken many different ways, I'm going to choose to go literal...bear with me.   I was having coffee the other day with a colleague from @innovatorsink and we were talking about the fact that many of the really interesting, cool, fascinating things that are happening in the area of STEM, particularly technology, won't make it into the average textbook.  It is becoming imperative that educators look for ways to educate AWAY from the textbook and instead mindfully curate from the internet, use local resources (such as young entrepreneurs and startups) to bring the newest, most exciting ideas to our young students.   Most girls will begin to lose their interest in the sciences, math and technology by middle school, but boys are at risk, too.   I implore educators to look around--look at the universities near you doing cutting edge work, look to startup accelerators and small business incubators and leverage the knowledge that is being created in your communities--you may be surprised at the willingness you will find to help keep the STEM curriculum alive and engaging.  Here in Troy, NY we are lucky--years ago 'Tech Valley' was born and we have resources everywhere.   If you are in an area that doesn't, please contact me and I will be more than happy to help you locate some options that educators have to keep your students on the cutting edge....after all, it's where we ALL need to be.   Thanks to Smartkidsny, innovators ink, Troy's Center of Gravity and the RPI Entrepreneurs in Residence program for helping me to see what has been in my own backyard for years.

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Private college in upstate New York offers buyout package amid budget concerns - Albany Business Review

Private college in upstate New York offers buyout package amid budget concerns - Albany Business Review | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
Retirement buyouts offered to faculty in school's College of Arts and Sciences and School of Education, a move that could affect around 45 professors.
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

There is a certain writing on the wall for traditional college campuses--this article is beginning to tell a piece of the story.  One of the biggest issues, from my experience in higher education, is that campuses of all kinds still follow a lot of the same rules and rituals as they did 50, 70, 100+ years ago.  Right now the feeling is that, in time, the only traditional schools that will be left standing in their 'glory' will be the ivy leagues (because apparently no one puts Harvard, Princeton or Baby in the corner) and most other ones are being left with a choice: authentically innovate or move out of the way.   Innovation on most college campuses tends to be little more than putting a new coat of a paint on something they've already tried before--often it falls to the marketing department to tout the innovations in a way so that they sound new and different to everyone...but sadly most are not.  This article talks about consolidation of spaces and campuses...that's the first step. In the next few years you will begin to see things that formerly would have seemed sacrosanct--like the blending of schools and jettisoning of instructors from their already tenuous positions, as well as tenured professors.. 

To truly innovate, higher education needs to open it's doors WIDE to industry, young entrepreneurs, the techies (not trekkies, necessarily!) and find ways to break the surly, self-important bonds that keep them pinned to a model that is slowly, painfully, dying.  Within 15-years--we need about a generation and a half that come up through the rather antiquated system to affect real change--higher education will be significantly different.  Physical spaces will shrink, with any luck some of the ineffective bureaucracy will crumble, and education will become inextricably linked to the industry that is driving this country forward.  Research that now lays on a shelf will be dusted off and handed to someone who can enact it, enliven it and eventually capitalize on it. 

 

The system we have now is breaking; the question of the value of a higher education is out there in universal rhetoric and very few can answer the question satisfactorily.  The seminal question, for me, is  "what campuses will  heed the writing on their hallowed walls and find ways to play nice in the sandbox with the other big kids' and which will, out of a sense of duty, or arrogance, begin the process of closing their doors?"  It is important to understanding that higher education, whether it seems so or not, has been a closed system for most of its history; this call-to-action is a very uncomfortable for some, untenable to others and tends to flummox most of the dinosaurs who run our institutions.  It's well past time for a new leadership model--one that comes from this decade and if that's not possible, one from this century might be nice.

 

There is a saying I love "A bend in the road isn't the end of the road, unless you fail to make the turn."   So who is going to make the turn?

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Learning Channels for the 21st Century--where does meaning-making fit?

Learning Channels for the 21st Century--where does meaning-making fit? | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
What is 21st century learning, and how do networks and technology function within it?
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:
I think that these 'channels' have always been important, although some have been 'raised' in importance in the age of technology.  I would have a few additions and changes to this graphic, if it were mine, for instance: 1. Expand Media Literacy - I would replace Media Literacy with Digital Literacy which is broader in scope to the traditional notion of media literacy. Digital literacy, to me, would include how to discern information sources, as well as the information being communicated itself. Some digital outlets are more trusted sources than others. As has always been true, but again has been raised to level of more critical importance is understanding what is factual, from what it is shaped to sound factual, to what is clearly opinion and to what is, frankly, garbage.   Learners need to understand that there are things, like the aforementioned data discernment  that hasn't changed in importance, but they have become more difficult. Another related practice,  is  the process of taking literature and statistics and using them to push a particular agenda or side of a story.  This practice is as not new, but having so many media outlets can add credence simply by the amount of people who are able to receive information and repeat it: data swarms towards us through devices, but also people carrying the information.  It is like a giant game of telephone, no pun intended, and how the information gets translated after going through the many filters means that we have to be extra vigilant in how we treat information and data. Given all the data out there, having learners go back and question some of the things we've come to accept as truths can be a very powerful way of uncovering some of the myths or misperceptions that we've all carried with us for so long (e.g. 4 out of 5 dentists surveys recommend Trident for patients who chew gum...who was the fifth guy and what did he have to say?"  People who each breakfast lose more weight than those who don't.  We accept this, yet in actuality there is very little data to support this supposition and the original research done was not extensively rigorous (check out: http://www.fastcoexist.com/3017539/why-youre-fat/skipping-breakfast-isnt-why-youre-fat?utm_source=facebook). These are a few things that we have heard forever and haven't questioned much--we have the tools now to research these and find out what that fifth dentist was thinking! :-) 2.  Retain the things we know are important - I would retain things such as self-direction, creativity, the ability to think not just abstractly, but also to see connections between knowledge bases (particularly those that don't' seem to have a lot of immediate connections-i.e. Music and Mathematics) and the importance of being able to learn from group interaction and dialogue have always been critical to the learning process.  3. Add Meaning-Making - again, if this were my graphic (which it isn't!), I would add an oval for 'Meaning Making" that would synthesize some of the concepts here, but stresses the crucial nature of finding a way to take new learning and making personal connections to what you have learned in the past.  The making of meaning is a step that is often glossed over or considered  a "nice" part of learning if you have time to do it'.  Yet pressing a learner to articulate connections and meaning and then communicate those thoughts enlivens the cognitive process of building connections, but also opens up the learner to the challenge of finding both the overt connections, but also the more subtle nuances of what they have learned.   This is a particularly important task in adult learning where adults look for the relationship and relevance of what they are learning to their lives, goals, etc.  Making meaning may sound, again, like a nicety and perhaps doesn't seem to contain the rigor of other learning tasks, but it is actually one of the most important of the things we ask learners to do.  In my opinion, if I were to update Bloom's famous taxonomy, I would place meaning making along with synthesis or above it....making meaning is a form of synthesis that requires the learner to think more deeply about the content being communicated.   This graphic is not a great representation of 'learning channels', but I give the author credit for trying to create an infographic that could help educators see all of the parts of learning that need to be attended to as part of the learning process. 

I'm interested in your thoughts and comments!

Thank you te@chthought.com http://www.teachthought.com/learning/6-channels-of-21st-century-learning/) for the Scoop :-)
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12 Valuable Wordle...Word Clouds in Education Series: Part 1

12 Valuable Wordle...Word Clouds in Education Series: Part 1 | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
Welcome to a series of posts devoted to the use of Word Clouds. I know you will find new information… whether you are a seasoned user of word clouds, or brand new. I enjoy working with teachers and...
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

Related to my earlier scoop where I talked about making meaning, I think word clouds can be a powerful tool in helping students to see connections within disciplines, as well as between them.  Consider how you can use word clouds both with students individually and in groups--they may not be as 'vogue' or hot as they used to be, but there is a reason word clouds made a splash when they first emerged.  I think they still have a ton of potential when really trying to push students to see the connections *and* make meaning.

 

Scoop from Michael Gorman's Blog, 21st Century Education Technology and Learning.  Thank you!

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Stories, not facts

Stories, not facts | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

....and learners will remember statistics and facts better when they are embedded in stories and anecdotes that are meaningful. 

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Welcome! | LinkedIn

Welcome! | LinkedIn | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

Ben Franklin knew this before Constructivism ever became THE theory!

 

Thanks Lina Papillo for the Scoop!

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10 Reasons You Don't Sound Like a Leader

10 Reasons You Don't Sound Like a Leader | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
If you’ve worked hard and have been rewarded with a leadership role, congratulations. Now, every time you open your mouth you can inspire, motivate, persuade and coach others. No pressure, right? It can be intimidating to think that your words …Read »
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

The author does a great job here of putting together a list of why people in leadership may not SOUND like leaders.  I would like to add a few of my own:
1. Forgetting (whether selective or for real) what you said and to whom you said it.

2. Hedging around issues so that you can look good to all parties involved

3. Changing your mind/direction without consulting the team or offering plausible reasons

4. Failing to speak up to those who lead you when it is necessary

5. Being threatened by your team in such a way that you fail to communicate how really amazing they are and you walk away with a lion's share of the kudos.

 

 

Thank you Anita Bruzzese for the Scoop!

 

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The disposable academic

The disposable academic | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
ON THE evening before All Saints' Day in 1517, Martin Luther nailed 95 theses to the door of a church in Wittenberg. In those days a thesis was simply a position...
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

I have spent many years in a PhD program and while I can tell you, under no uncertain terms, that I learned a great deal from my coursework, interaction with instructions and collaboration with my fellow students, the dissertation phase has proven to be an anticlimactic ending to a rather gratifying experience.  While I have a wonderful advisor, finding a topic and the various issues that followed have done very little for my desire to move forward.  Actually, I became aware in the middle of my dissertation process that I would really be better of pursuing an MBA if I were going to follow my true passion.  But the dissertation kept me stuck...as if a world of judgment would rain down on me if I didn't finish this big paper, which is much a ritual, as it is a useful piece research.  

Then, I had an epiphany recently, one that comes with age, experience, self-awareness and too many years being around PhDs. Many of those who finish their PhD degrees do so that they can judge those that don't.  Careful here, I'm not generalizing, but I will tell you that 20+ years in higher education and I can tell you that there are few places where a PhD seems to separate the haves from the 'have not’s, and that is in education--and almost education alone.   I am grateful for what I've learned during my PhD program, the connections I made, etc. but I have also come to the realization that wanting something different for my life doesn't take away from the fact that I may not, at least right now, finish my dissertation.  I do have to still deal with the people who were in it with me and who became attached to the idea that I would be Dr. Johns (like my mom), but letting go is the best thing I've done for myself in years.  I still get all the benefits of finishing all the other requirements, but I don't need a few more letters after my name to tell me that I can make important contributions and I certainly don't need to join an elite club where those who have it are somehow better than those who don't.  I would heartedly warn anyone who is thinking of a PhD program to consider 'why' -- if it's for the experiences, the course work, the debates, the collaboration--do it.  If it is for the end product--the letters, the silly regalia, or the ability to be taken serious by others with letters--think some more before diving in.  There is a lot to be said these days for other kinds of certifications following a Masters degree that will get you more money and open as many doors.  My only caveat is this, if you want to be an academic, a researcher, tenure track professor, than by all means, go for it.  But don't do it because it seems like the natural next step--I can tell you that it is rarely the 'natural' next step unless you have some very specific goals in mind.

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diane gusa's comment, May 17, 2014 10:13 AM
Interesting and I am glad you have come to your own place of knowing. Why did I work for those letters? None of the reasons you listed. I worked and completed my degree because I was inspired it would be my next step. I would have never written my dissertation and then have my thoughts (concepts) published in the Harvard Educational Review, if I hadn't taken the PhD journey. Yours is a different journey, no less valuable.
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Digital vs. Information Literacy

Digital vs. Information Literacy | Learning. Education. Know the difference. | Scoop.it
“ Have you ever wondered just what the difference is between digital and information literacy? Or how they are connected to each other? Those are important questions because for librarians, the conve…...
Lynne Constantine-Johns's insight:

Digitial Literacy has moved beyond the older construct of information literacy because it takes into account 1) an individual's agency in creating content and 2) the potential for groups to positively, powerfully collaborate.   Individuals and groups are creating new meaning and original ideas at a rate that has never been experienced in education.  Digital Literacy helps us to explain the phenomenon that we are experiencing as the connectivity of the internet continues to flourish.

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