I have been doing a few seminars for homeschoolers over the past couple of months, and they have been well received. Under the umbrella of the Scholarship of Learning, there are homeschoolers in Alberta who are now changing their teaching to become more attuned to how their children actually learn, as opposed to how educators teach children. I have enjoyed doing this, but have felt that I am betraying what I know about learning by teaching in this way. As a result, I am going to reintroduce the Science of Learning under the umbrella of the Scholarship of Learning.
I know that there were a number of you who have learned this way in the past, and you were excited about the opportunity to do it again. When the University decided that my proposal would be difficult to work with when I wasn’t going to physically present, I felt gutted, and couldn’t see how I could ever do this without them. The intervening months have helped me reorient myself, and I now realise what many of you were saying when you were encouraging me to do this in the first place. It isn’t about accreditation, it is about learning. Many of you have (or are working on) postgraduate (MSc, MA, PhD) degrees, and yet, you still yearn for the real learning that we did together in the Science of Education. I think that I lost faith in myself (even if you didn’t). I now realise that I don’t need a University standing behind me to hold my hand. You can, and will learn, even if there is nothing more than a Scholarship of Learning certificate for you when you complete the basic modular requirements.
For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about, I will still be offering seminars to people who want to know how people really learn, but the main learning activity will be taking place online. While I was at Bangor University, I decided to design a class about how people really learn that would be offered to senior undergraduates and students taking masters degrees. I designed the class around the principles of how people learn. It was completely different from anything else I had ever been involved with, and it was a scary prospect the first time I ran it.
The Science of Learning class was successful, beyond my wildest dreams. Not only did the students learn much more than I could have imagined, but their feedback for the class was overwhelming (read what they have said in the links in the sidebar). They knew that they were learning, and had loved what I had done. Over the years, there has been pressure for me to go beyond the classroom enrolment model because many of the students who had graduated and moved on really wanted to become a part of that real learning experience again. Last spring, I proposed to the University to open it up as a free class that people could take from wherever they lived. It never happened because the University decided it would be complicated.
Over the past few months, I have met with a number of people who want to know how people really learn. I have decided that what people really want from me is the expertise that I have acquired over the past 20 years studying this very topic at a prestigious university.
The bottom line is that I am going to resurrect my module as The Scholarship of Learning on a subscription basis ($50 or £35 per month – I have to make a living), which should be affordable, even for those of you who are still doing postgraduate degrees (I almost called it learning). To launch, I need a commitment from about 20 of you, and I’ll work out the details of how it is going to run then. I think we can begin the class in January, if I can get your commitments. Let me know what you think, and those of you who have done this before, please let others know – both in your own networks, and through comments on this post (or in the Scholarship of Learning Facebook group).