I've just been reading this interesting publication from the Brookings institution titled How Blogs, Social Media, and Video Games Improve Education.
At the beginning of the report there is a quote from Alan Daly, at the University of California at San Diego, who predicts that
"Education innovation will shift away from experts and capacity building to focus on networks… We have to start thinking about the expertise that resides in the system, and we have to be connected in order to make use of it. [Education] is moving away from large-scale prescriptive approaches to more individualized, tailored, differentiated approaches.”
This is a concept that is dear to my heart – the transformation of our current school system and its focus on the individual 'schoolhouse, into a networked schooling system, with its emphasis on the inherent strength of the network, on collaboration, sharing, synergy etc.
Thus this monograph is less about the specific technologies and their particular uses in education, and more about their affordances as instruments of this transformation. The emphasis is less on how these technologies can be used as vehicles to 'deliver' the curriculum and improve student performance and more on how, in and of themselves, they are changing the very nature of the teaching and learning experience by enabling new ways for participation, engagement, and collaboration to take place.