Finals, And What Comes After

Here at BYU, we are firmly in the middle of Finals week.  I’m not too worried, mine aren’t that bad, except for the fact that I had one scheduled at 7:00 am this morning.  but I was done by 8:30, so it’s not all bad.  And I only have two other finals, the rest of my classes just had us turn in papers on the last day of classes that counted as our finals.   I have a take-home German linguistics final, that should actually be fun (I told you I was a nerd!), and my final for this class for which I created a research blog: Shakespeare.

As the professor explains, this final will be very different from anything I’ve ever done before.  It will be sort of a group discussion of what we have learned and experienced this year.  We will discuss our individual learning plans and how we have met the learning outcomes of the course.  It seems like we’ll also have a chance to discuss the progress and the product of other blogs in the class.

I am excited for this,  I am looking forward to an opportunity to expand the conversation and the discussion about Shakespeare and my interests in Hamlet and Germany.  This has been a very interesting class, exploring the future of academia, by creating research blogs that can connect with scholars and students across the world. This social learning has been fascinating to observe, as students become friends and help each other with research and ideas via comments in class and on the blog.

I have long been amazed at the concept of Knowledge Management and Knowledge Centered Support, which are usually applied only to businesses or IT departments.  The basic idea is that knowledge is an asset and needs to be managed and used in order to be a benefit for the company.  Knowledge is key, and access to knowledge should be easier and better.  I am a big believer in Collective Knowledge and Open Source, especially Open Source Education (thus the title of this blog), where knowledge is free and freely shared with anyone who wants it.  For me, it all comes down to this: I don’t know everything, you don’t know everything, but if we add what you know to what I know, and add that to what everybody else knows, then collectively we do know everything.

And so, with Shakespeare, these ideas, for me, have meant that I have documented my thought process and my findings, my research and my ideas for anyone who cares.  My blog exists and will continue to exist, and I will add to it when I have new things to say pertaining to Shakespeare, teaching, Germany or Hamlet.  I have welcomed the comments made on this blog, and I have made comments on other blogs.  I have collected and cited sources, both traditionally academic sources as well as web resources.

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