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Have learners gone feral?

ANU Research Skills and Training

Thursday, 20 March 2014 from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm (AEDT)

Have learners gone feral?

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Have learners gone feral? Accessing and accrediting learning at the edges of educational space

Learners have been teaching themselves for many centuries. However in our highly connected time learning practices have truly gone feral. Twitter drips out 140 character learning bites around the clock. Google Scholar gives you, on demand, as many resources as you need. Scoop.It lets you connect with experts in your field who are curating the best and most recent information on any topic you are interested in. Don’t know how to make that widget? Search YouTube or, better yet, join a maker community.

According to Pew Research the age of ‘binge learning’ in linear courses might be coming to an end: we can now all “graze on information” anytime, anywhere. So how are people organising these platforms and information streams to maximize their learning? Is it possible, or desirable, for formal higher education providers to engage with these independent learners and add value?

More importantly, if learning is feral and happening everywhere, how can we assess and accredit the learning that is happening in existing higher education settings, but not as part of formal course work? A conventional degree testamur is a ‘mute’ object that actually tells us very little about the richness of the learning that is taking place, especially around the edges of formal coursework. It looks like Mozilla’s Open Badges may be an important piece of the puzzle, a way of making learning more legible to others, and to the learner themselves.

In this lecture Joyce Seitzinger will discuss the concept and potential of Mozilla’s Open Badges movement against the background of these feral learning practices and sketches out what this new development might mean for our universities.


Joyce Seitzinger has worked in eLearning for 15 years, including 8 years in higher education in New Zealand and Australia. Since 2007 she has become a strong advocate of networked learning in education and organisational learning. Her consulting service Academic Tribe helps individuals and organisations build networked communities and practices in education that suit lifelong learning needs in the 21st century. Joyce is one of the founders of the newly established OBANZ (Open Badges Australia and New Zealand) community. She is an active Twitterer, follow her at to see what she’s working on.

Refreshments will be provided.

This project is funded through an Office of Learning and Teaching seed grant.

Have questions about Have learners gone feral?? Contact ANU Research Skills and Training

When & Where

Sparke Helmore Theatre 1, Building 6
Fellows Road
The Australian National University
Canberra, ACT 2601

Thursday, 20 March 2014 from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm (AEDT)

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ANU Research Skills and Training

The ANU Research Skills and Training team run university-wide programs for all Higher Degree by Research (HDR) Candidates at ANU. Our workshops are designed to support HDR candidates in their work, drawing on expertise from the broader ANU research community. All events are open to all HDR candidates, supervisors and early career researchers. The events are multi-disciplinary and help you develop transferable skills and knowledge that will be useful to your future career.

All ANU HDR candidates are sent notice of upcoming research-related news, events, and opportunities in the monthly edition of the ANU HDR Update.

All our workshops count towards the Science, Health and Medicine Career development Framework program

In addition to the events and workshops program, ANU Research Skills & Training run a number of programs where HDR candidates can meet and interact with other candidates on campus including the ANU Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition and Thesis Boot Camps.

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