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Conor McManus

Full Time Student, Belfast Metropolitan College

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What are the opinions on the view of moving away from lecturing to facilitating shared learning in a more creative environment?

Recently I have looked a lot at shared learning, this is centred around the idea of peers helping each other learn through creative thinking. With the vast knowledge available through the internet and companies such as Ted, twitter, you tube a student can learn so much on their own from industry leaders. Does this mean a change in how we learn is needed moving away from lectures to sessions which encourage shared learning from peer to peer. The idea of facilitating is still quite new but a conversation and a dialogue should begin now about how this can be incorporated into education to make it more useful, relevant and up to date.


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    May 18 2011: We learn from our peers constantly, and anybody can search for anything online that they want, but I go to school to be taught by teachers, people trained to educate and who have a solid grasp and expertise of the subject. I have had many classes that focus on class discussion and group projects, and to an extent these are useful learning techniques, but I have been in classes that have been hijacked by students who think their opinions and ideas are more valid and worthwhile than the experts who ideally know much more than the students. I just finished a class that was called critical thinking that was largely student run. Not a thing was taught about critical thinking. Students would be asked to research a topic or read some articles and come back and present information and 99% of the class showed up not having done any of the requested readings or research and instead had only asinine uniformed opinions to offer and used the class as a platform to rant about their misguided beliefs. The teacher did what she could to keep things civil but that was about all she could do. It was a waste of my time, money and effort. I have also had other classes in which class discussion was the focus and it worked out well, but these were all honors classes with students that always went the extra mile and were eager overachievers, these types of students are rare in my experience.
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      May 27 2011: Meher, I think that if it is done properly and facilitated correctly the shared learning experience can be controlled and delivered correctly, your opinion on people is narrow minded but I do know this type exists, but it needs to be facilitated correctly and it may have been the teachers fault it was not managed correctly. I in my time have taken part in many groups experiences and with the right motivation I believe everyone are eager overachievers.

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