Before we leave content behind (Irwin Devries, Norm Friesen)
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16 October 2012
At first glance, the meaning of the term "content" could not be more obvious. It is the stuff we share, study, watch, create and mashup on the Web. However, a closer look at content as substance, as educational, as opposed to form, and even --deposed or enthroned on the Web-- as king, raises many more questions. What is the ³educational² nature of content and how does it relate to its (re)usability? How does form (e.g. learning designs, management systems) relate to content? And what makes it valuable or valueless? This presentation
will both raise and explore these questions, in the form of a dialogue between the two presenters -one that will gradually expand to include the audience as well. This dialogue will tap in to ideas of curriculum as an overall structure that both enables and limits the coherence of educational ³contents,² contexts and purposes. It will also look at the issue of specificity and irreplaceability that is implied in the notion of content as substance and
materiality -as something that is actually specific to a place and time, rather than ubiquitous and (theoretically) endlessly adaptable. Our point, in short, will be to show that content is something to understand more fully before we leave it behind.