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Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The Oracle of Devlin ;-)


I wish that just once Keith Devlin would write a blog post that I could yawn at and didn't feel obligated to refer my readers to. But the man just seems incapable of writing anything mundane or trite or ordinary. His latest thoughtful offering, on MOOCs and "quantitative reasoning," here:

http://devlinsangle.blogspot.com/2013/12/moqr-anyone-learning-by-evaluating.html

I love watching Dr. Devlin's experience with MOOC-building evolve over time, and his openness/honesty in letting us observe as he rides the roller-coaster of hope/doubt/optimism/pessimism/confidence/uncertainty that seem to coincide with the development of MOOCs (if not education change/reform in general!!)
He will be substituting something he calls "Test Flight" in place of a final exam in the next iteration (beginning Feb. 3) of his own mathematical-thinking MOOC, and watching to see if it succeeds or 'crashes and burns.'

He winds down this particular piece with these contemplative words:
"The more people learn to view failure as an essential constituent of good learning, the better life will become for all. As a world society, we need to relearn that innate childhood willingness to try and to fail. A society that does not celebrate the many individual and local failures that are an inevitable consequence of trying something new, is one destined to fail globally in the long term."

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