Punks In Education

Despite the fact that administrations and society in general already assume the presence of technology in classrooms as something natural and necessary, initiatives in this regard are still proportionally scarce, when comparing education with other socio-economic sectors. Little by little, digital whiteboards and computers are being acquired for educational use, in what seems to be the beginning of a process of modernization of education systems. However, the forefront of techno-pedagogical research is light years away from timid institutional innovative efforts, illuminating such suggestive concepts as Edupunk and Invisible Learning.

Punks In Education

Fundación Telefónica has just published the volume “Edupunk applied. Learning to undertake ”, which directed by Professor Alejandro Piscitelli is a continuation of the work “ The Facebook project and post-university. Social operating systems and open learning environments”

The term Edupunk was coined in 2008 by Jim Groom, an educational technology specialist at the University of Mary Washington, and has quickly spread throughout the American higher education arena. The name establishes an explicit homage and a parallel with punk, the musical movement of the second half of the seventies since it shares with him the reaction against the established, the philosophy “Do It Yourself (DIY) / Hazlo Tú Same ” and hatred towards what is considered commercial.

Edupunk starts from the rejection of traditional training methods and advocates collective learning, for example through virtual communities, through free open-source online tools and avoiding corporate packaged software, promoting creative teaching and student self-development.

A great example of this innovative educational paradigm is the “Murder, Madness and Mayhem” wikiproject, carried out by Professor John Beasly-Murray from the University of British Columbia with his students from the Latin American literature course. Murray suggested to his students that they write articles for Wikipedia Latin American narrative related to dictators, with the aim of obtaining the maximum possible number of outstanding articles (on Wikipedia they are articles that readers have considered of exceptional quality and are marked with a brown star). The results were excellent: three articles considered outstanding and eight more classified as good. Throughout the process, Murray’s students collaborated and were assisted by the Wikipedia user community, thus adding a collaborative dimension to the initiative.

An attempt to inject the principles of Edupunk into traditional training systems is the Invisible Learning project of professors John Moravec and Cristóbal Cobo Romani, which starts from the basis that for the current student, who grows within a digital society, the technology it is invisible, it is only a means to carry out different tasks, but not an end in itself. In this scenario, the challenge for educational systems is to develop the technical knowledge of teachers so that they can use ICT in the design of their pedagogical strategies and in their day-to-day life in the classroom.

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