Control and Constraint in E-Learning: Choosing When to Choose

Control and Constraint in E-Learning: Choosing When to Choose

Jon Dron (University of Brighton, UK)
Indexed In: SCOPUS View 1 More Indices
Release Date: March, 2007|Copyright: © 2007 |Pages: 366|DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-390-6
ISBN13: 9781599043906|ISBN10: 1599043904|EISBN13: 9781599043920|ISBN13 Softcover: 9781616927714


Every learner is on a trajectory, an individual path that involves choices about what to do next in order to learn, choices that are bounded by intrinsic and extrinsic constraints. In some cases the learner controls those choices, sometimes they are made by someone or something else, sometimes control is negotiated, or it emerges from complex interactions of many agents. Control and Constraint in E-Learning: Choosing When to Choose pulls apart that simple dynamic, examines it in detail, and explores its consequences to provide a new, theoretically grounded approach to the design of e-learning systems, to the benefit of teachers, programmers, researchers and instructional designers alike. In addition to shedding new light on traditional e-learning systems, it demonstrates that the social technologies underpinning Web 2.0 are fundamentally different in their dynamics of control and, consequently, when designed and used with care, offer benefits that significantly exceed the promise of their forebears.

Reviews and Testimonials

"Jon Dron has made a major contribution to our understanding of learning in the networked era. This book will likely do what writing by Alex Romiszowski in the 1980s, and Tony Bates did for scholars and distance education practitioners in the 90s."

– Terry Anderson, Canada Research Chair in Distance Education and Editor, Canada

"Dron considers the way that individuals learn and specifically how an online learning environment can affect the learning path. He describes how networked learning environments should be constructed to give control to learners, and synthesizes theories about learner control, autonomy, self-direction, adult learning, and other concepts into a single theory of transactional control from a systems perspective."

– Book News (November 2007)

"This is a happy hunting ground for anyone looking to argue against over-enthusiasm for institutional virtual learning environments."

– British Journal of Educational Technology, Vol.39, No. 6 (2008)

Table of Contents and List of Contributors

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Author(s)/Editor(s) Biography

Jon Dron is a principal lecturer in the School of Computing, Mathematical & Information Sciences, at the University of Brighton, UK. As well as teaching a range of subjects, he is currently the head of learning environments for his school. His Ph.D. thesis was on self-organization in networked learning environments, and he holds a Postgraduate Certificate in teaching and learning in higher education, a Master's Degree in information systems and a BA in philosophy. He is a National Teaching Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, UK. He has published over 40 refereed articles on the subject of e-learning, and written several well-known e-learning applications.