Connectivism investigates how connected technologies contribute to learning in the digital age.

Foundations of Connectivism

  • Learning is a continual, lifelong process
  • Technology is altering how we think and learn
  • Both individuals and organizations are learning systems, and we learn from our connections with each other

Learning is about connecting knowledge to the situation where it can be used. In the digital age, learning how to find and assess information is more valuable than memorizing facts.

How is technology "teaching" us?

  • Non-linear learning
  • Cognitive "off-loading"
  • Need to stay current

How are we "teaching" technology?

  • Personalisation, filters
  • “Error-provocative” design
  • Artificial intelligence

Massive open online course (MOOC)

Subject: The Connectivism and Connective Knowledge

First subject: students experience the principles of connectivism in practice, 2008

2.2K participants

  • autonomy
  • openness
  • connectedness
  • interactivity


  • asynchronous interaction
  • non-English speaking groups

Openness: free flow of information through the network, and encourages a culture of sharing and a focus on knowledge creation


Disruptive trolling behaviour

Sharing means trust

"I felt like some guidance would have helped."

Learner-to-Learner Interaction instead of Instructor-To-Learner

Embrace independent learning

Can everyone be an autonomous learner?


Mackness, J., Mak, S. F. J., & Williams, R. (2010). The Ideals and Reality of Participating in a MOOC. Proceedings of the 7th International Conference on Networked Learning 2010.

Robison, W. L. (2016). Ethics Within Engineering: An Introduction. Bloomsbury Academic: New York.

Siemens, G. (2005). Connectivism: A learning theory for the digital age. International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning, 2(1), 3-10.


Created with images by Robynne Hu - "untitled image" • ROBIN WORRALL - "I heard recently that the average person scrolls the height of Big Ben in a day. Whilst waiting for a delayed train in Bath I spotted this line of hands on phones – all endlessly scrolling." • Krzysztof Kowalik - "untitled image"