ICS Colloquium

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Published on January 6, 2009

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Computer Mediation of Collaborative Learning: A Research Agenda : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 1 Computer Mediation of Collaborative Learning: A Research Agenda by Gerry Stahl Researcher at ICS, L3D, CS November 20, 1998 Computer Mediation of Collaborative Learning : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 2 Computer Mediation of Collaborative Learning A. Mediation of cognition by tool & word: Vygotsky B. Collaborative learning in communities of practice: Lave C. Enhancing cognition with external memories: Donald D. Enhanced cognition with computer mediation: a research hypothesis E. The research community of practice: collaborative on-line hermeneutics F. Supporting subjective divergence & social convergence: perspectives & negotiation G. The “guide on the (Internet) side”: WebGuide H. Conclusions & pointers A. Mediation of Cognition by Tool & Word: Vygotsky : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 3 A. Mediation of Cognition by Tool & Word: Vygotsky “The use of artificial means [tool and symbolic artifact], the transition to mediated activity, fundamentally changes all psychological operations just as the use of tools limitlessly broadens the range of activities within which the new psychological functions may operate. In this context, we can use the term higher psychological function, or higher [truly human] behavior as referring to the combination of tool and sign in psychological activity.” (Vygotsky, 1930/1978, p.55) Slide 4: ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 4 Vygotsky compares a 4-5 year old child to W. Köhler’s apes: ape can use tool to get bait if both appear in visual field together. child uses words to plan the use of a tool to achieve goal of getting a target. This use of words can tie together tool & target -- create future goals & sense of time. Self-monitoring. nature ape tool truly human cognition young child others self nature others self nature others self symbol tool symbol plan, time, monitor, subgoals unmediated mediated cognition dialectical mediation Slide 5: ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 5 “Although practical intelligence [tool use] and sign use [language] can operate independently of each other in young children, the dialectical unity of these systems in the human adult is the very essence of complex human behavior [cognition]. Our analysis accords symbolic activity a specific organizing function that penetrates the process of tool use and produces fundamentally new forms of behavior.” (p.24) Slide 6: ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 6 “The history of the process of the internalization of social speech is also the history of the socialization of children’s practical intellect.” (p.27) Speech as communication with others Egocentric speech verbalized to self Silent rehearsal, planning, thought Language transforms the nature of memory & thought; allows planning & subgoals. As language is internalized, it transforms relations to nature, others, self. (interpersonal, social) Mediation in history & development (intrapersonal, subjective) B. Collaborative Learning in Communities of Practice: Lave : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 7 B. Collaborative Learning in Communities of Practice: Lave “I propose to consider learning not as a process of socially shared cognition that results in the end in the internalization of knowledge by individuals, but as a process of becoming a member of a sustained community of practice. Developing an identity as a member of a community and becoming knowledgeably skillful are part of the same process, with the former motivating, shaping, and giving meaning to the later, which it subsumes.” (Lave, 1991, p.65) Slide 8: ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 8 “Schools and workplaces accord knowledgeable skill a reified existence, turning it into something to be ‘acquired’ and its transmission into an institutional motive.” (p. 79) Vygotsky: Lave: internalization individual cognition social cognition (reproduces, evolves) schooling: individuals learn community develops (knowledge, practices) breaks the mediation of community & individual alienation of learning (degrees) commodification of knowledge (facts) Slide 9: ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 9 “The theoretical view I will call situated social practice emphasizes the relational interdependence of agent and world, activity, meaning, cognition, learning, and knowing. It emphasizes the inherently socially negotiated quality of meaning and . . . also claims that learning, thinking, and knowing are relations among people engaged in, with, and arising from the socially and culturally structured world.” (p. 67) a theory of learning to analyze & critique alienation emphasizes: relational interdependence of individual & social groups (vs. alienated agent) socially negotiated meaning (vs. reified facts) learning as relations among people engaged in activity (vs. commodified grades & degrees) C. Enhancing Cognition with External Memories: after Merlin Donald (1991) : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 10 C. Enhancing Cognition with External Memories: after Merlin Donald (1991) Slide 11: ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 11 D. Enhanced Cognition with Computer Mediation: a Research Hypothesis : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 12 D. Enhanced Cognition with Computer Mediation: a Research Hypothesis If young children transform their cognition through mediation by tool & symbol (Vygotsky), then adults can further transform their cognition through mediation by computational symbolic tools! If learning is a process between individuals and their communities (Lave), then this process can be facilitated by software that supports the interplay between groups & their members! If the power of cognition is driven by mediation through external memory (Donald), then effective web-based group memories can be designed based on an understanding of mediated cognition! E. The Research Community of Practice: Collaborative On-line Hermeneutics : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 13 E. The Research Community of Practice: Collaborative On-line Hermeneutics 1. Form a research community with expertise to study issues in the research hypothesis. 2. Interpret texts like Vygotsky & Lave thru close textual interpretation. 3. Analyze terms like mediation, alienation, commodification, external memory, tool, symbol. 4. Evolve the community, so individual knowledge, skills, & perspectives are shared by the group. a. Provide computational symbolic tools for mediating cognition -- e.g., to make discussions persistent. b. Provide tools for negotiating among individual & group perspectives. c. Design uses of the latest web technology to support cognitive needs of the community -- self-reflective, participatory design. F. Supporting Subjective Divergence & Social Convergence: Perspectives & Negotiation : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 14 F. Supporting Subjective Divergence & Social Convergence: Perspectives & Negotiation Last year’s CSCL seminar (Koschmann) found 2 problems (dePaula, 1998): 1. Lack of continuity of on-line discussions. 2. Lack of convergence toward explicit group consensus summary statements Readings in Cog Sci will address these problems: 1. The new research community will be guided by: a central research hypothesis an attempt to define key terms analysis of texts that reference each other a series of research questions addressed repeatedly 2. The software will structure the discussion so that divergent individual comments can be compared, negotiated, & consolidated in subgroup & group perspectives. G. The Guide on the (Internet) Side: WebGuide : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 15 G. The Guide on the (Internet) Side: WebGuide Readings CSCI P8 CSCI comp Readings comparison EDUC PSYC PHIL LING P9 P7 P6 P5 P4 P3 P1 P2 P10 P11 P12 P13 P14 P15 LING comp PHIL comp PSYC comp EDUC comp Slide 16: ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 16 Participants divide into subgroups -- possibly based on discipline perspectives Questions may be introduced at level of Readings or subgroups Individuals formulate ideas in personal perspectives Questions & ideas are inherited thru to comparison perspectives Members comment, edit, delete, consolidate, negotiate in comparison perspectives without interfering in personal perspectives Consensus positions, evolved in comparison perspectives, can be promoted up to group perspectives, where they will be inherited down the hierarchy Slide 17: ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 17 A view of WebGuide currently used at the Logan School for Creative Learning to explore and negotiate perspectives on an ecology issue: acid mine drainage. H. Conclusions : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 18 H. Conclusions Course will be an experiment in designing web software and collaborative learning practices to enhance group cognition. Group will evolve by sharing expertise & text analysis. External memory will capture discussion history & make it persistent for group self-reflection. Tool (WebGuide), language (group’s discourse vocabulary), goal (the hypothesis), group (social roles) & participants (as knowledgeably skilled group members) will evolve together (dialectical mediation). Web Pointers : ICS Colloquium -- Gerry Stahl 19 Web Pointers Readings in Cog Sci course site: http://www.cs.colorado.edu/~gerry/Readings WebGuide publications: http://www.cs.colorado.edu/~gerry/WebGuide/publications WebGuide demo: http://hpcc1.ngdc.noaa.gov/~depaula/WebGuideDemo WebGuide site: http://www.cs.colorado.edu/~gerry/WebGuide my homepage: http://www.cs.colorado.edu/~gerry evolution of external memory: http://www.cs.colorado.edu/~gerry/evolve/rapid.html

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