concept maps

This concept map is entirely different from the first I tried and published. This time I’ve focused on an issue that has intrigued me for a while and I’ll try to relate it to the connectivism concepts we’ve covered in the last few months. In any case it was very enjoyable going back to cMaps a second time and leveraging off some of the concept maps I’ve seen in various CCK08 posts.

In my work I get to introduce a lot of on-line methodologies and technologies to teachers. Too often the sessions happen in isolation and out of context. For example, I do a lot of workshops on finding digital resources via our corporate portal and search engine. The question then remains “So What? I’ve found this stuff – what do I do with it?” The context is so much bigger than the scope of the individual sessions. It’s often a real Catch 22 situation where it is hard to know where to start. The connections and sense making are not always made.


This concept map is my attempt to provide a framework to assist teachers to better understand the cycle of decisions needed when deciding whether or not to use online resources as part of their practice. In making these decisions a range of concepts related to Connectivism (CCK08) are invoked, for example:

  • in the pedagogy area – teachers will need to make decisions about knowledge, skills and attitudes as well as the approach eg teacher led? learner directed? or a combination of many methods to suit the circumstances. These decisions match the concepts of connectivism, the nature of knowledge and the issues of power & authority.
  • in the resources area – what connections does the teacher make with their colleagues? with corporate systems? with their students? Does the teacher supply all of the resources for students to “learn” or does the teacher create a space eg a wiki, for a group of students to co-create a resource which answers a problem and then becomes available to the rest of the cohort? Could peer assessment be part of the process?
  • in the repositories area – which networks are tapped into to give access to required resources? Or is it open slather and the students learn to sift what is important?
  • in the deployment area – how open will the deployment be? Will the resources be of the CCK08 experiment type or locked behind usernames and passwords for only invitees to use?

One of the overriding questions I’ve talked about throughout this course and also mentioned by George in his Wk 11 summary is: will these new educational technologies transform the way we teach or will they be tools to augment the existing paradigm?  One simple answer is that teachers now have more tools available to them to make a greater range of choices and depending on the context, decide on what’s best for their students, themselves and their colleagues.

I first tried to create with CMap but got too caught up in the technology and not quite “getting it” – it wasn’t intuitive for me.

Downloaded “The Brain” and it was a breeze. Found it really easy and thought how closely aligned it’s principles are to the key ideas of how I currently understand Connectivism.

As a left handed Taurean wonder whether the more effective concept maps for me are simple to look at with an ordered arrangement such as Lisa Lane’s in her CCK08 blog or showing the full complexities as in Bradley Shoebottom’s – see “The Daily” post of September 23.

Clearly there are no simple answers but perhaps the concept is often more useful to the author than a reader. I’m also leaning more to the visual simplicity as espoused by Garr Reynolds in his work through Presentation Zen.

Still struggling with which way to go with my own concept. Maybe I write one for myself and one for others to comment upon.

Here is version #1 – the brainstorming unprocessed version.

Grant's Concept map v1

Grant's Concept map v1