Teaching & Learning | News
4 Core Principles of Connected Learning
Connected learning — education that uses digital media to engage students and
encourage communication, collaboration and critical thinking — is the key to
student success in the information age, according to a new report from the
Alliance for Excellent Education.
The 4 Principles
The report, "Connected
Learning: Harnessing the Information Age to Make Learning More Powerful,"
identifies four key components of a connected approach to learning.
- Make learners the focus. This involves helping students
become lifelong learners and develop the skills and knowledge they need to
succeed in the 21st century.
- Help students make the connection between their
own interests and their academic studies and also connect with inspiring mentors
and peers to improve student engagement.
- Learning is continuous. Continuous learning involves
linking learning to school, home and the community, so it can happen in any
- Finally, Help learners become makers and producers
by teaching them to experiment, create, produce and design.
According to the report, by incorporating these four principles into
education, schools can improve student engagement and, consequently, increase the
number of students who graduate from high school prepared for future success in
college or the workforce.
A Fourth 'R'
The report identified relevance as the fourth "R," after
reading, writing and arithmetic, and each of the four keys to connected learning
relate to making education relevant to students as a way to help them succeed.
“In today’s digital age and global economy, students need skills that cannot
be learned by highlighting facts in a textbook or filling in blanks on a
worksheet. Connected learning leverages students’ interests to master core
academic concepts and deeper learning skills, while equipping them with a
lifelong interest in learning,” said Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for
Excellent Education, in a prepared statement.
The full report, "Connected Learning: Harnessing the Information Age to Make
Learning More Powerful," is available as a free PDF download from the
Excellent Education's site.
Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at [email protected].