In the article, Connectivism: Its Place in Theory-Informed Research and Innovation in Technology-Enabled Learning,Frances Bell states that connectivism is a successor to behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructvism because of their limitation and failure to address the learning that is located within technology and organizations, along with their lack of contribution to the value judgements that need to be made in knowledge-rich environments. There are multiple principles of connectivism, which include:
• Learning and knowledge rests in diversity of opinions
• Learning is a process of connecting specialized nodes or information sources
• Learning may reside in non-human appliances
• Capacity to know more is more critical than what is currently known
• Nurturing and maintaining connections is needed to facilitate continual learning
• Ability to see connections between fields, ideas, and concepts is a core skill
• Currency )accurate, up-to-date knowledge) is the intent of all connectivist learning activities
• Decision-making is itself a learning process. Choosing what to learn and the meaning of incoming information is seen through the lens of the shifting reality. While there is a right answer now it may be wrong tomorrow due to alterations in the information climate affecting the decision (Siemens, 2004).

Why use it

As technology continues to advance, connectivism comes into play because it is considered a learning theory for the digital age (Siemens, 2004). Unlike behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism, connectivism can address the learning that is located within technology.

Examples of application

In the article, Connectivism and the Use of Technology/Media in Collaborative Teaching and Learning, Neena Thota looks at “Places to Go: Connectivism & Connective Knowledge, “ a course designed by George Siemens and Stephen Downes. This was the first course that followed the principles of connectivism. The course was online and utilized wiki, videoconferences, Moodle, email, Twitter, and Google Groups. This online course helped students take initiative of their learning and the resources available to them.


Schalkwyk, G. J., D'Amato, R. C., & Thota, N. (2015). Connectivism and the Use of Technology/Media in Collaborative Teaching and Learning. New Directions For Teaching And Learning, (142), 81. doi:10.1002/tl.20131/abstract

Bell, F. (2011). Connectivism: Its place in Theory-informed research and innovation in technology-enabled learning. International Review Of Research In Open And Distance Learning, 12(3), 98-118.

Siemens, G. (2004). Connectivism: Learning as a network-creation. ASTD Learning News, 10(1). Retrieved from