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The World Is Open: How Web Technology Is Revolutionizing Education Paperback – June 21, 2011

28 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1118013816 ISBN-10: 1118013816 Edition: 1st

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Editorial Reviews


"A hefty tome that nevertheless provides valuable, wide-ranging examples of the changes taking place in education worldwide." (School Library Journal, February 2010)

"Technology is changing higher education in more ways than can be counted. Distance education has become common. Curtis J. Bonk, a professor of instructional systems technology at Indiana University, surveys this landscape in The World Is Open: How Web Technology is Revolutionizing Education (Jossey-Bass)." (Inside Higher Ed, August 25, 2009) --This text refers to the Unknown Binding edition.

From the Inside Flap

Whether you are a scientist on a ship in Antarctic waters or a young girl in a Philippine village, you can learn whenever and whatever you want from whomever you are interested in learning it from.

As technologies have become more available, even in the most remote reaches of the world, and as more people contribute a wealth of online resources, the education world has become open to anyone anywhere. In The World Is Open, education technology guru Curtis Bonk explores ten key trends that together make up the "WE-ALL-LEARN" framework for understanding the potential of technology's impact on learning in the 21st century:

  • Web Searching in the World of e-Books
  • E-Learning and Blended Learning

  • Availability of Open Source and Free Software

  • Leveraged Resources and OpenCourseWare

  • Learning Object Repositories and Portals

  • Learner Participation in Open Information Communities

  • Electronic Collaboration

  • Alternate Reality Learning

  • Real-Time Mobility and Portability

  • Networks of Personalized Learning

In addition, this important resource contains compelling interviews that capture the diverse global nature of the open educational world from those who are creating new learning technologies as well as those who are using them to learn and teach in new ways. Using the dynamic "WE-ALL-LEARN" model, learners, educators, executives, administrators, instructors, and parents can tap into the power of Web technology and unleash a world of information. --This text refers to the Unknown Binding edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (June 21, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118013816
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118013816
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #376,296 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

After five uninspiring years as a corporate controller and CPA, Curt Bonk received his master's and PhD degrees in educational psychology from the University of Wisconsin. He is now Professor at Indiana University (IU) teaching psychology and technology courses and adjunct in the School of Informatics. Curt is also a founding member of the Center for Research on Learning and Technology (CRLT) at IU which opened in the late 1990s. Drawing on his background as a corporate controller, CPA, educational psychologist, and instructional technologist, Bonk offers unique insights into the intersection of business, education, psychology, and technology. Curt has received the CyberStar Award from the Indiana Information Technology Association, the Most Outstanding Achievement Award from the U.S. Distance Learning Association, and the Most Innovative Teaching in a Distance Education Program Award from the State of Indiana. In 2003, Curt founded SurveyShare, which he sold in 2010. More recently, he was selected as one of 24 presenters for a special NSF Cyberlearning Research Summit on "Transforming Education" held at National Geographic in Washington, DC. From 2012 to 2015, Bonk has been annually listed by Education Next and Education Week among the top contributors to the public debate about education from more than 20,000 university-based academics. In August 2014, he was named the recipient of the Mildred B. and Charles A. Wedemeyer Award for Outstanding Practitioner in Distance Education at the 30th annual Wisconsin Distance Teaching and Learning Conference in Madison, Wisconsin, while a few months later, he received an award for Outstanding Contribution to Education from the Global Learn Tech Conference in Mumbai, India. A well-known authority on emerging technologies for learning, Curt has given over 1,400 talks around the globe related to online teaching and learning. In addition, he has over 300 publications on topics such as online and blended learning, massive open online courses (MOOCs), massive multiplayer online gaming, wikibooks, blogging, open source software, collaborative technologies, and synchronous and asynchronous computer conferencing. Curt taught a MOOC on online teaching in the spring of 2012 to nearly 4,000 people that was hosted by Blackboard in CourseSites. Curt Bonk is author of the Handbook of Blended Learning: Global Perspectives, Local Designs (2006) as well as Empowering Online Learning: 100+ Activities for Reading, Reflecting, Displaying, and Doing (2008), and The World Is Open: How Web Technology Is Revolutionizing Education (2009). His recent book, Adding Some TEC-VARIETY: 100+ Activities for Motivating and Retaining Learners Online (2014), is freely available to download as an eBook at in Chinese as well as English. And his latest book with Routledge, MOOCs and Open Education Around the World, as well as a special issue of the International Journal on E-Learning on the same topic both came out in July 2015. All of his recent keynote talks and myriad Web resources are posted at and (see See homepage:; and email:

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Robert David STEELE Vivas HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on August 19, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I've seen educators struggle to herd their faculty cats, hire staff under industrial-era rules, and strive to accommodate students that know more than their professors about anything outside the "teach to test" topic. This is one of three books that I have digested these past ten days, along with Making Learning Whole: How Seven Principles of Teaching Can Transform Education and (in galley form) Reflexive Practice: Professional Thinking for a Turbulent World. All three are 6 STAR books, and since I have only given this grade to 99 books out of the 1636, so at 6% of the total, this is saying a lot IMHO. These three books together, along with Don't Bother Me Mom--I'm Learning!, The Emerging Worldwide Electronic University: Information Age Global Higher Education (Praeger Studi) and my favorite deep books, Philosophy and the Social Problem: The Annotated Edition and Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge, comprise a basic library for anyone wishing to develop global strategies for taking any university into the future. Of course there are other great books, but in my limited experience, these are a foundation.Read more ›
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By J. Kaye Oldner on September 5, 2009
Format: Hardcover
"The World is Open", by Curtis J. Bonk, PhD, is tremendously filled with new ideas and innovations for education. From the causal, on-demand learner to elementary schools and college students, this book identifies the latest trends and resources in learning. This book has so much; it took me a long while to finish. Every few pages I would get on the internet and look at the sites. Wow! Something in this book impacts everyone who is reading this review.

If you are reading this, then you have learned how to blog, or a t least how to surf the internet. Maybe even how to use Twitter or Facebook. This is an example on on-demand, on-line, blended learning. For The Flat classroom project has students from Westwood Schools in Camillia, Ga., collaborating with students and schools in Doha, Qatar and Dhaka, Bangladesh for project-oriented activities judged by judges in China, United Kingdom, Australia and Canada. MIT has the open course project has their class curriculum on-line and free to use. Since 2006, Michigan requires high school students to complete at least 20 hours of meaningful online learning to graduate and Florida has an on-line high school.

Dr. Bonk's book illustrates current trends and technologies of using Web 2.0 in learning of all types, not just education. It really brings home the how the world will be taught in the upcoming years. What is evident from Japan, China, Africa, South America, and Canada, is those countries are investing and using the new technology to educate and train their people, and if the U.S. does not change its educational delivery, then it will fall behind.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Jason B. Huett PhD on August 31, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Dr. Curtis Bonk begins his book "The World is Open" with a bold statement: "Anyone can now learn anything from anyone at anytime (p.7)." This seems like a simple idea in theory, but it is a radical concept in application. Bonk challenges the reader to imagine a world where free and open are fundamental rights. Deep-rooted educational systems, rife with self-interested reasons to perpetuate the status quo, refuse to acknowledge that our learning landscape has been fundamentally altered. However, Bonk shows us that transformative change is coming, and it won't be stopped. He explains that technology, openness, and unprecedented access to knowledge are removing control of the learning process from institutions and placing it into the hands of the individual. This change is nothing short of revolutionary.
A riveting narrative, "The World is Open" will undoubtedly draw comparison to Friedman's seminal work "The World is Flat," but this book is perhaps more important. Where Friedman's book addressed the broad spectrum of globalization in business, industry, and education, Bonk focuses in on the intersection of education and technology where he deftly documents and defines the ground-breaking changes taking place. He also provides practical approaches that help the reader navigate the open educational world and that allow learners to surf the coming wave of change in one the most thrilling times for education in human history. This book made me more enthusiastic and excited about the future of education than any other I can recall. It is a must read for life-long learners, educators, parents, or anyone interested in how changing technology is revolutionizing the learning landscape.
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