Old habits die hard

A desk with lots of paperI’m constantly surprised by how old-school my learning habits are. When I started my MSc in digital education last year I thought I’d be reading and sharing articles entirely online, perhaps using some kind of futuristic tablet-cum-hoverboard.

So how come my desk is creaking under the weight of several hundred pages of printouts, with highlighter pen and handwritten notes all over them? I also have a little notebook (the low-tech version – ask your parents, kids) where I draw lots of diagrams and tables to get things straight in my head.

(I find that very strong coffee and instrumental music – particularly Mogwai’s Rave Tapes – help too.)

I’m not a complete luddite, by the way. I’m creating video and audio, using blogs and wikis, finding articles online and putting course materials together in Moodle and iTunesU. Meanwhile Dropbox saves my bacon on a regular basis. But when it comes to getting to grips with new concepts it looks like I’m still a print-and-scrawl guy.

That’s my third MSc module (course design) done. It’s been a demanding, intriguing and satisfying 12 weeks. My brain is looking forward to a complete rest before I tackle research methods in the spring.

I might have to ask Santa for a new highlighter pen, though.


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