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Home Group 4

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Roger Mills
14 September 2011

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Roger Mills
5:49pm 14 September 2011

Home Group Leader: JEAN MITCHELL

Elsebeth Korsgaard Sorensen
8:40am 26 September 2011

We - in homegrooup 4, lead by Jean Mitchell - managed to collect 9 out of 16 member this first day of the conference.

Elsebeth Korsgaard Sorensen
8:46am 26 September 2011


Reflections of Alan Davis, President Empire State College

Surprising that big institutions do not have a global strategy

The keynote underplayed the digital divide issue.

“Low voltage” not a good metaphor. It is still not available to all people. Not many have the money for investing. The mobile is widespread, but what is it used for? Quantity of message? Now…age divide…..institution divide….gender divide…. 

Expensive to download stuff with the mobile

Power can be the problem

Teachers may be the problem

Thailand has television

US presidents (Clinton and Bush) spoke about digital divide….. Alan did not?

What kind of “social justice” are we talking about?

And, thus, what international strategy?

Utilization of technology….a complex task….an ethical stand (also ethical motives and equity) is necessary:

Touch upon pedagogy models

Touch upon teacher roles

Educate students to become researchers….collect data with the mobile…

 Ethical issues & motives cannot be separated

Elsebeth Korsgaard Sorensen
9:36am 26 September 2011

Reflections of Dr. Stamenka, Uvallic-Trumbic, UNESCO

 (7 out of 16 members present)

1. Is there a limit to the ability of ODL and ICTs to satisfy demands?



Students support package

Decreasing office hours – but conferencing does not work ?

The separation of roles between teachers and students? Learning together in a shared endeavor?

Learning for the future- rather than the past?

Institutions pushing more and more of the cost to students


2. Will the private sector prove to be better than public ODL institutions?

 Cost is involved

Scientific quality of content?

Private institutions twice as expensive as public (Thailand)

Ranking is a complex issue


3. Are OER just another education technology fad?

They are definitely useful (New Zeeland)

Yes, they are used (Thailand)

OER should be used as any other resources…..the meta-knowledge of knowing haw to critically approach/apply, THAT is the thing to be learned.

OER can help scaling, searches, etc…..

Elsebeth Korsgaard Sorensen
9:42am 27 September 2011

Reflections of Professor Narend Baijnath, Pro Vice-Chancellor, the University of South Africa, UNISA

 (8 out of 16 members present)

1. Is the traditional notion of the university as a public good (with the ideals of academic freedom and institutional autonomy) in danger of being marginalized in the face of the massifciation and commodification of higher education? Are distance learning institutions mere instruments in the mass production of skilled person  power? Or do they have a role to play in the preservation of the ideals of a university?

It is difficult to imagine….

Australian UNESA ….. student everywhere….the decision was taken in AU, that ….education is not a public good, it is a private commodity….

Also in UK it will become a private commodity

Thailand: developing countries….their financial problem is also the problem of their country. The government subsidises… Thai government has been very resistant to English programs to get into the country

“Skills”…what enterprises need…..a commodity to be obtained

It is both a public and a private good ….UNISA:  can be viewed as a public good that they don’t charge foreign students.

Students come to UNISA….there is no entrance exams.

If social justice = equality, then everyone in the UK is now being punished.

But social justice = equity

 Globalization IS for the public good, because we are going towards more social justice.


2. How can we promote social justice and development through greater "brain circulation" between the developed and the developing world, and between well-endowed and less endowed institutions in the global distance learning fraternity?

Stronger and more democratic systems, supporting the development of more healthy systems, educating learners and teachers with more ethical and interhuman/intercultural awareness

To minimize IN-JUSTICE


3. How can the commercial aims of most cross border delivery be married defensibly and sustainably to a developmental agenda?

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