Monday, 13 July 2009

Bypassing webfiltering made easy by FaceBook group.

Every since I started teaching back in March 1989, I quickly realised that teachers and learners will not waste time discussing/arguing against situations that they are unlikely to alter. Teachers and learners will generally find a way around it, if a satisfactory reason is not given (even if it in a policy).

In the case of Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL), teachers and learners will either just accept the situation and not use the technology that they are aware of OR wait until they get home to use the Internet and other learning and teaching solutions they are unable to use at their learning institution.

One important aspect of corporate/education networks is the use of website filtering systems. The function is to block unsuitable websites. This situation is acceptable if the reasons for the blockage to a website is explained and a system is put in place to easily unblock the site if a teacher considers it to be acceptable viewing for their course. In most cases this system works fine, although many teachers are not fully aware that they are able to have a site released.

It is unlikely that many educations give the same provision to learners which started me thinking... I wondered how the learners might get around this lack of ‘learner voice’. As an experiment I decided to find out if I can get pass a website filtering system. After 5 minutes on Google I was pointed to a FaceBook group that actively pass information to learners on how to get pass the network restrictions. I have joined and subscribed and I now get regular updates on how to get passed the website filtering system.

Clearly, I will not post the information here but if any teacher (I will need to prove your identify) wishes to have the links and email subscription details then contact me on this blog or twitter . Of course, you could just spend a few minutes on Google and find the information yourself... just like I expect many learners do.