I was involved in a podcast the other week, debating the role (and future) of the formal VLE within education. What was interesting about this podcast was that on the panel involved there was a range of views on the topic, which should have made it interesting listening materials.
I agree with Steve Wheeler’s views that the VLEs available are not meeting the needs of advanced users (like he and I) however I think strategically, using a VLE is a phase that people and institutions have to go through, and the fact that many institutions have spent thousands (some millions) of pounds implementing them now is not the right time to stop using them.
Saying that though I have recently connected on facebook with an old friend from uni who is a maths teacher, and he made this comment…
we’re using FROG across the local authority for our VLE, the biggest advantage I can see for me right now is being able access school files from home…saves me using laptops/memory sticks etc.
Within the school sectors, many are now embracing VLEs but there doesn’t seem to be an integrated approach to training staff in how to use them. The end result, a huge investment in a system that allows a tutor to access files at home!
Anyway – to access the podcast – go to http://elearningstuff.wordpress.com/2008/11/30/e-learning-stuff-podcast-009-the-vle-debate/