The video below was created in April 2010 as part of an MA ICT in Education module I was studying looking at how images could be used to represent ideas/concepts. It was also an exercise in using lo-fi equipment and production techniques to produce video content to support learning, which explains the less than Spielberg-esque production values.The video was shot using a digital stills camera, edited in Windows Movie Maker and hosted within YouTube. Cheap, cheerful and something that can be done by anyone.
This video was a light-hearted production aimed at prompting members of the Learning Technology team to choose images they felt represented the concept of a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) and to discuss them. The subsequent video was then used to stimulate debate among the members of my class around the place of VLEs in education. It proved to be very entertaining and provoked a lot of discussion. It is for this reason that I am now making the video available to readers of this blog. We want to hear your opinions and how you feel about those presented in the video. What image would you choose to represent the concept a VLE? Let us know and post any images that you might have.
The subject of VLEs can be a polemic one and despite the odd ICT guru telling us they’re not, VLEs are still a very relevant part of the educational landscape. The mere mention of the abbreviation VLE is enough to send some into a frenzy of rage, while it prompts others to enthuse profusely about their value as a educational tool. For me, I don’t think it’s ever a black and white issue and my opinions regarding the efficacy of such platforms change from time to time. It very often depends on what they are being used for and whether that suits what they have been designed for. I can see their value, but I’m also mindful that they are limited in what they can do and shouldn’t be seen as a one-size-fits-all solution when using technology to support learning and teaching.
Hopefully, my colleagues who appeared in the video will revisit it to reflect on their opinions in order to see if they differ from those they gave in April 2010. Let us know what you think and where you stand on the subject of VLEs in education.