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Transforming Education with New Media

Participatory Pedagogy, Interactive Learning, and Web 2.0


Peter DePietro

The possibilities that online platforms and new media technologies provide, in terms of human connection and the dissemination of information, are seemingly endless. With Web 2.0 there is an exchange of messages, visions, facts, fictions, contemplations, and declarations buzzing around a network of computers that connects students to the world – fast. Theoretically this digital connectivity, and the availability of information that it provides, is beneficial to curriculum development in higher education. Education is easily available, democratic, and immersive. But is it worthwhile? Is the kind of education one can get from new media platforms and social media resources, with their click-on videos, rollover animations, and unfiltered content, of sufficient quality that educators should integrate these tools into teaching? This book examines the use of new media in pedagogy, as it presents case studies of the integration of technology, tools, and devices in an undergraduate curriculum taught by the author, at an urban research university in the United States.
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12. Mobile Education




With mobility, learning does not have to be site or time specific. Instructors can teach 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and students can learn wherever and whenever they want—at two o’clock in the afternoon or two o’clock in the morning. They just have to turn on their tablet computers, download course assignments, and learn. But what kind of learning is it? It is not conventional learning in the age of chalkboards, where students had to physically be present in the classroom and take notes with paper and pen, before the wipe of an erasure cleaned the notes away. But it is conventional learning in the age of technology.

It is accepted in higher education that e-learning systems, online platforms, and handheld devices are conduits between teacher and student and that information delivered by teachers and received by students on these systems, platforms, and devices will move fast and be available easily. It can be, because the information is electronic. It is digital. It travels around networks at impressive speeds, and it can be stored on computers for very long periods of time. It is malleable and transferable. Because of this, there is an expectation that digital content accessed on mobile devices is good for education.

One objective of educating with technology is to provide students with the tools they need to learn in a digital environment that is screen-based and interactive, as well as the...

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