Week 4 – A3 – Synchronous tutorial

As already refered to for other Elluminate sessions, its very interesting to notice the different type of  participants involved in the discussion. V actively involved through speech, actively involved through texting, observants etc.


1. What makes an activity ‘authentic’?


In the paper by Brown et al, authentic activity is defined as ‘the ordinary practices of the culture’.  School activity is regarded as inauthentic as what students do is different what authentic practitioners do.  In our Elluminate discussion some participants emphasised that “if you are doing something you are learning something”. A simulation of an activity is still not authentic. It is ditached from the real life situation (out of context).


2. What is the problem with making everything explicit in learning?


Creating rigidity in the learning process. Not everything is explicit /


Implicit learning is also vital in the learning process as tacit knowledge can be seen as uncoded knowledge which to be learned, needs interaction with others.





3. Do you think the divide between school and authentic activity can be bridged?


In the discussion, it was said that this divide cannot be bridged.  On the other hand I believe that to some extent, yes, school can to a certian degree close the gap with authentic activity.


It  is more difficult to learn from un-natural activities, so the school environment needs to provide learning built on real situations. As Vygotsky’s concept of “zones of proximal development” suggests, we as educators, need to design authentic tasks that are more difficult than students may handle alone, but not so difficult that they can’t be resolved with the support of peers or teachers who model appropriate strategies.



On Schooling…Collins, Brown, & Newman (1990, p. 453)

“Even today, many complex and important skills, such as those required for language use and social interaction, are learned informally through apprenticeship-like methods–that is, methods not involving didactic teaching, but observation, coaching, and successive approximation.”



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