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Open Courses, Informal, Social Learning and Mobile Photography

, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand

IJMBL Volume 8, Number 4, ISSN 1941-8647 Publisher: IGI Global


This paper provides an overview of MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) and contextualizes them within the broader trends of open, informal and mobile learning. It then discuss Phonar Nation, a free, open, non-credit five-week photography course that was offered twice in 2014 using mobile media to reach youth from 12-18 years of age. The author argues that Phonar Nation highlights several related developments that are leading to positive innovations in education. Firstly, it is not only open access but also uses and produces Creative Commons-licensed content that is open to be shared. Secondly, it is collaborative in the way that it is taught and in the way that participants are encouraged to engage with one another through social media sites. Thirdly, Phonar Nation exemplifies an approach that advocates call “Connected Learning”, which is socially embedded, driven by personal interests, and oriented to further educational and economic opportunities.


McGuire, M. (2016). Open Courses, Informal, Social Learning and Mobile Photography. International Journal of Mobile and Blended Learning, 8(4), 17-33. IGI Global. Retrieved March 26, 2023 from .