About virtual education and systems intelligence

I’ve been fascinated by the idea of combining the characteristics of eLearning (“teaching and learning in virtual environment”) and the idea of systems intelligence. There’s been a lot of talk about the challenges in e.g. recognizing, understanding, managing and supervising activities in eLearning  – this is in most cases explained due the “disjointedness”, complexity, novel habits of interaction and low visibility of the “new system” we try to cope with?

However, I think that it can be considered as a system anyway? I wonder if it’s worth of effort to try understand eLearning using the theories and aspects of systems intelligence? An approach to analyze and explain the activities using the framework of a systems thinking? Getting more intelligent in the system developing the activities (teaching, learning, supervising, etc.) better? I dunno. But we can try.

In Saarinen & Hämäläinen group, there’s been research about the relationship of teaching and systems intelligence, like Accelerated Learning, Teaching and Systems Intelligence (Sajaniemi, et al. 2004),  “Systems intelligent teacher in a systemic class”, (Systeemiälykäs opettaja systeemisessä luokassa, in Finnish, Salaspuro-Selänne, Soini. 2004), Oppiva ja systeemiälykäs koulu – tarua vai totta (in Finnish, Sajaniemi et al. 2005, Systeemiäly – valmistavan luokan opettajan kompassi (in Finnish, Pöyhönen, Sutela-Sallinen, 2004) and Valaistuksia systeemiälykkääseen opettamiseen (in Finnish, Sajaniemi, et al. 2004). Still, I would eagerly like to hear more about the research and experiences in this field – especially in the context of virtual education.

Is systems intelligence able to give us a new, fruitful framework to approach and analyze activities like learning or guidance in virtual environments? Could it somehow help us to “see inside” the system: structures, processes, dynamics, problematics? Is it possible to consider “learnining” as some kind of systems intelligent activity – by developing it we can increase the “quality” of learning? And such.