Category Archives: Identity

Crowdsourcing to retain language

Looking back at my previous post Apps To Retain Language another way people are attempting to retain their language is via crowdsourcing. Live and Tell is a language website which allows anyone to contribute translations and stories to save and learn languages such as Navajo. As brilliant as that initiative is some people such as Maurice Claypole make the accurate observation that errors and inaccuracies can be made and thus learnt and repeated – that is not successful learning. Claypole argues only when professionals donate their time to help with such crowdsourcing as translations, will inaccuracies be reduced. Then again time is precious; so how many professionals can afford to give up this valuable commodity?

Facebook Page Crowdsourcing in Education
Live and Tell
Guardian Article
Liberate Media


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Filed under Crowdsourcing, Identity, Online Learning

Online Learning and Privacy

Its never too late to learn and with the ever increasing presence of online learning courses and unpredictable recession more and more adults are turning to the internet to learn a skill and/or advance their cv. Looking at my previous post – Online Learning Infographic – the results for a demand in online courses are evident with institutes reporting a 73% increase in applications for online learning courses. The Open University is one such online source offering a myriad of courses ranging from Arts and Humanities to Social Sciences; it has something to appeal to almost anyone. Providing options to study in a postgraduate program, towards a degree or an introductory module and with over 22,000 students in the postgraduate program alone – The Open University is incredibly popular.

I spoke to Nikki – who is studying Spanish and French with The Open University – about her experiences with the online learning service which she referred to as “sometimes DIY”. Nikki continued to reveal that the Open University were very flexible with assignments and tutor’s are helpful via providing appropriate feedback. Moving on I wanted to discuss the notion of privacy; the Open University stores highly personal details of each student such as their date of birth, address, even income and bank details. I asked Nikki if she had any concerns of her private details being stored on the Open University’s database “not really, just type your name into google – 15 seconds of fame!” was Nikki’s reply. This relaxed attitude is very common. But, when it comes to your privacy and identity is there cause for concern when enrolling with an online learning source? It is noteworthy to explain in regards of privacy this article will refer to the storing and retaining of personal details on a website database. After all, there are some very easy ways to steal one’s identity. Professor and software developer Herbert H. Thompson conducted an experiment in 2008 to see how easy it was to steal one’s identity – the results were shocking. The average internet user is (in my opinion) completely unaware of how little privacy they really get when they put any information on the internet. As is evident from Herbert H. Thompson’s article, all you need is a few details about a person to access their bank account. In the words of Steve Rambam private investigator specialising in internet privacy “privacy is dead – get over it”. As petrifying as this is, I doubt there will be a decrease in people enrolling for online courses, however, I wonder if an increase in identity theft and loss of privacy will result in this? Only time will tell………

New York Times
Privacy Issues Online PDF File
Open University
Digital Fingerprint

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Filed under Identity, Online Learning

Apps To Retain Language

A special iPod and iPad app has been created for the language of Senconten (from the Salish language family). Used as audio dictionaries, they come with a definition and an audio example of each word accompanied by a picture of video for the word. Creating this application is a fantastic idea and will allow the Salish language to thrive and continue via the wonderful world of digital media. Working with the younger generation (who very often identify themselves as avid mobile users) via these apps will no doubt prove a success and with (according to research by Nevada University) 85.5% of young people in education owning a mobile, the creation of this app will no doubt prove successful – best of all its free!

Salish mobile app
Mobile statistics

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Filed under Digital Platforms, Identity

Salish Program

Another video from Kalispel Tribal Language Program – towards the end of the video several people reveal how reconnecting with the Salish language has reaffirmed their identity.



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Our Language Is Our Identity

Our language (whether we realise it or not) is part of our identity, but how many of us take this for granted? My first language is Danish and I have never imagined it becoming endangered, however, after doing research for this weeks post I have learnt to appreciate my language as part of my identity. But, what happens when your language is endangered? Does part of your identity become endangered? After watching the video below I have come to the conclusion, that yes, for some cultures and groups, language and identity are intertwined. The video below explains how the Kalispel Tribal Language Program have tried to retain their language in the classroom and highlights the potential devastation of losing a language. In addition the Kalispel Tribal Language Program are also appealing to the younger generation via learning programs online and creating a downloadable Salish font/keyboard package to allow typing in English and all Southern Interior Salish languages.


Kalispel Tribal Language
Stanford Paper – What is identity?


Filed under Digital Platforms, Identity