Saturday, 18 July 2009

Trendy Terms Alert (2)

Here is my second L&D ‘Trendy Term’ alert. Each Trendy Term Alert (TTA) will consider whether the term has any mileage or whether it should be consigned to the trash can.

TTA: Web 2.0 – e-Learning 2.0 – Learning 2.0

By now millions of words must have been written about one or more of these ‘Trendy Terms’. It all started with Web 2.0, a clearly defined and meaningful concept, and this was then followed by e-Learning 2.0 and, fairly recently, Learning 2.0.

Web 2.0

According to Wikipedia, Web 2.0 refers "to what is perceived as a second generation of web development and web design. It is characterized as facilitating communication, information sharing, interoperability, user-centered design and collaboration on the World Wide Web. It has led to the development and evolution of web-based communities, hosted services, and web applications. Examples include social-networking sites, video-sharing sites, wikis, blogs, mashups and folksonomies.”. However, the WWW inventor, Tim Berners-Lee has called the term “a piece of jargon”!

Notwithstanding this, a lot of people understand what the term Web 2.0 stands for and its use. So, when someone says that they are using a Web 2.0 tool, such as I am here, then it’s quite clear to them what others mean.

e-Learning 2.0

This term was coined by those using e-Learning to specify the use of Web 2.0 tools. For some, including me, e-Learning has always encompassed the use of Web 2.0 tools but as the former is so often seen as re-versioned PowerPoint presentations or a modern day version of a computer-based training programme, then I can see why the term e-Learning 2.0 has come into being.

I don’t have a problem with either the term ‘e-Learning’ or ‘e-Learning 2.0’, just as I don’t with ‘face-to-face learning’, ‘action learning’, ‘distance learning’, etc. because they tell me how the learning provision is being delivered, which can be extremely useful.

Learning 2.0

I’m not at all sure what this term means because for me it means virtually nothing. I suspect that it has been invented by those who don’t like the term ‘e-Learning’ and who want it removed from the L&D vocabulary but why, especially given my previous comments?

If ‘Learning 2.0’ = ‘e-Learning 2.0’, as I suspect it does, then why confuse the issue because it doesn’t make any sense? Neither does it help others to know what the person using the term is talking about! If it going to be used on an on-going basis then what is ‘Learning 1.0’? The latter needs to be defined and quickly in my view, and good luck to anyone who decides to take this particular task on.


Web 2.0 =

e-Learning 2.0 =

Learning 2.0 =

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