This is a diary of my involvement in a project on collaborative learning in the psychology department at the University of South Africa. Most recent posts below and links to previous posts on the left.
Students and lecturers are more familiar with a knowledge-transmission model of education and don't always understand what is expected of us in a more constructionist environment.
We have too little information about lecturers' and students' backgrounds, networks and skills - so often we don't realise that there is somebody in the group who could teach the rest of us a lot about some aspect of what we're studying.
No or very limited mechanisms for students to talk back to the lecturer and (especially) to talk to one another.
Inadequate 'course memory'. Lecturers often are the only bridge for this year's students to the knowledge created by last year's group - students don't get to see what last year's group did. There is no mechanism for students who want to stay in the group after the course is officially over (and who could be a useful resource for next year's students) to do so.
Pithamber Polsani (2003) has published a useful paper "Use and Abuse of Reusable Learning Objects" in the Journal of Digital Information. His focus is mainly on pointing out what is wrong with existing understandings of what a learning object is and on suggesting better approaches. I'm not sure that he really has the problem solved, but he is very good at pointing out what is wrong with current (non)-definitions, e.g.:
Existing content repositories arbitrarily classify and categorize digital content as Reusable Learning Objects (RLOs). For example, the Center for International Education at the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee (http://www.uw-igs.org/search/index.asp) classifies interactive maps, lectures, a population clock, course modules, and other objects, all under the category of Global Studies Learning Objects. The Campus Alberta Repository of Educational Objects (http://www.careo.org/) lists a video clip of a person lifting weights with voice-over narration, an oriental porcelain statue, and the Final Declaration of Participants in a seminar on land mines, as Educational Objects.