Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Subjective-Learning Subjugated-Objectives Subversive-Subjunctives

Week 1 in #Rhizo15
We are asked: How do we design our own or others' learning when we don’t know where we are going? How does that free us up? What can we get done with subjectives that can’t be done with objectives?


As opposed to --Learning Objectives

"A statement of a learning objective contains a verb (an action) and an object (usually a noun).

  • The verb generally refers to [actions associated with] the intended cognitive process.
  • The object generally describes the knowledge students are expected to acquire or construct.
    (Anderson and Krathwohl, 2001, pp. 4–5)"
--tending or intending to subvert or overthrow, destroy, or undermine an established or existing system.

"The English subjunctive – that is, the subjunctive mood, is used to form sentences that do not describe known objective facts. These include statements about one's state of mind, such as opinion, belief, purpose, intention, or desire. The subjunctive mood is also used for statements that are contrary to fact, such as If I were a giraffe."

Essentially, all learning outcomes are subjectives. 
We can try to "design learning," and we are trained to "design learning," but how our "design" is experienced by any one learner is as unique as a fingerprint, and impeded upon by the scars we have collected throughout our coarses and courses and curses.
As Virginia Woolf said, "Biography is considered complete if it merely accounts for six or seven selves, whereas a person may well have as many thousand."
Our learning design is experienced in as many ways as we have learners.

Those who can meander freely through such a course as #rhizo15, whether it be maze-like or cloud-like or layers-deep or miles-wide, should consider this choice, this freedom, this perquisite of economy and culture and opportunity as an entryway into possibility.

This is not meant to be trite - because we never actually know where we are going when we design learning. We are trained to pretend to, and to actually believe it on some level.

This course acknowledges that this concept of subjectives is of value, not to be tamed, but to be ridden like a wild bronco while you laugh maniacally.
Or to be observed through periscoping binoculars, with a hummingbird in your periphery.
 Or to be subverted exponentially until all that is left is a kaleidoscope of shards to be thrown like pixie sticks.
How would one truly subvert this #rhizo15? Perhaps by mapping out the curriculum with pretentious linear learning objectives while pretending they will have a happy ending?


  1. Excellent Susan. I hadn't thought about subjunctives. I never think about subversion. I love your kaleidoscope of shards to be thrown like pixie sticks image.

  2. Rich and loamy and so rhizomy. Considering.

  3. My notes as annotations ... you are helping me to understand this topic ...

    1. I see Susan's post with some phrases highlighted. Is there a way to add/retrieve comments as well?

    2. Kevin - I am also seeing highlights but wasn't sure if there were annotations attached....

  4. The idea of subverting #rhizo15 is a very good thought experiment. I think it would be like trying to kill grass. It requires smothering the entire lawn. Killing a tree is much simpler. Of course, cleaning up both is a big pain.

  5. Oh my! A person may have as many as a thousand selves?! #mindblown That changes the whole digital identity conversation, doesn't it? Who am I today? Kaleidoscope to see the digital me! :) Helen

  6. Love this! Oh wow i just put 2 and 2 together and got 4,000 coz if we have as many learning experiences as learners and each learner is multiple people (D&G agree with that one) then u never know which aspect of each learner will learn what when and how they"ll interact w each other

  7. Since all learning is idiosyncratic and subjective, wouldn't trying to make objectify (and quantify) it be the truly (Orwellian) subversion? Is writing about it subjectifying, objectifying or just being too academic?

  8. Am I subjective when I say that this post takes me a step closer to #rhizo15?