Chris Noessel > Masters Project: Free Range Learning Support> Conclusion
Introduction  |  Process  |  The Service  |  Experience Prototypes  |  Conclusion  |  Appendices


Would the service reawaken and encourage the spirit of inquiry in adult learners?

I believe so. My primary reason is not because of my arguments, though I believe they are sound. It is not in the persuasiveness of my description, though it seems engaging. It is not even the subjective feedback from the users of my experience prototypes, though it was mostly positive.

Rather, the reason I believe that the service would be a success in this regard is that I have witnessed the idea take hold in my peers. Admittedly, this is a skewed and statistically insignificant test group. But we are in a critical context at this institute, and they have had the most direct experience with the idea. Throughout the year I developed these ideas and arguments in presentations and in casual conversations, and my classmates were always part of the discussions. Once they got the idea, and especially after I developed the functioning experience prototypes, I noticed the emergence of a certain response. When in casual conversations during meals, or walking about the city, if someone ran across a question they couldn't answer, or a word they wanted translated, or an interest they wanted to capture, they would turn to me, jokingly, make cell-phone key-entry motions with their fingers, and describe it as a "free range learning moment." They wanted to capture their interest, to act on it. One member of the institute's staff reported that when she and a friend toured a nearby city, they caught themselves standing in a grand monastery and wondering why they didn't have the service right then.

If the mere idea of being able to engage the world in this way has had a positive effect on the spirit of inquiry, I am confident that the real thing would encourage it much more so.

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