We are living in a digitally focused world that is in a constant state of flux. New technologies are being introduced in unprecedented speed. Before we could take in the instant transformations ushered in by Facebook, YouTube was introduced followed by Twitter; three major social media platforms that have forever changed the human life on this planet.
It is a truism now that during the first two decades of this millenium, the digital landscape witnessed the birth of a wide variety of web technologies that together have reshaped the way we go about doing our life, business and education. For us in the field of education, we have seen first hand the great things (and the bad things) technology has brought tothe sector and how, especially after the pandemic, we have grown to be quasi if not totally dependent on its services.
For instance, during the lockdown, online and remote education was the sole possible way to teach and learn. Teachers PD, workshops, and conferences e-migrated to the virtual world thus creating a new playing field that, for some of us, is utterly new.
With the increasing virtualization of education, there appeared (or re-surfaced) a wide range learning and teaching concepts. Heutagogy, cybergogy, andragogy, and peeragogy are all examples of concepts that have become increasingly relevant in today’s digitally focused pedagogies. I have already covered these learning concepts in a previous post here in educatorstechnology.com, and today I want to introduce you to the concept of peeragogy.
Peeragogy is a theory focused on collaborative and peer-to peer teaching and learning. It is premised on the assumption that learning is a socially constructive act that involves an ongoing interaction among different actors including individuals, groups of persons, surrounding environment, among others. At the core of peeragogical thinking is the ability to co-construct knowledge.
seeks to empower the worldwide population of self-motivated learners who use digital media to connect with each other, to co-construct knowledge, to co-learn. Co-learning is ancient; the capacity for learning by imitation and more, to teach others what we know, is the essence of human culture. We are human because we learn together. Today, however, the advent of digital production media and distribution/communication networks has raised the power and potential of co-learning to a new level. If you want to learn how to fix a pipe, solve a partial differential equation, write software, you are seconds away from know-how via YouTube, Wikipedia and search engines. Access to technology and access to knowledge, however, isn’t enough. Learning is a social, active, and ongoing process.
Check out this resource from Wikibooks for a quick overview of the peeragogy handbook. Also, watch this short video of Howard Rheingold explaining what Peeragogy is all about:
1- Corneli, J. and Danoff, C.J. (2011), Paragogy: Synergizing individual and organizational learning. (Published on Wikiversity.)
2- Knowles, M. S. (1980). The modern practice of adult education: From pedagogy to andragogy. Chicago: Follett.
3- Toward Peeragogy, by Arenastudies