Learning theory or pedegogical approach? I personally think it’s a discussion of semantics. Group B states that connectivism is not a learning theory because it not possible to show how students learn or what process they use to gain knowledge. In the past, mastery of a topic was assessed by what the student could regurgitate from the information given to them by the teacher. That doesn’t work in today’s world of “just in time” knowledge. Maybe we need to move away from the term “mastery” and look harder at growth. Growth CAN be assessed. It doesn’t matter how that growth occurs. What matters is that there IS growth in knowledge.
Group B also says that learning that takes place outside the classroom is difficult to assess. Learning has always taken place outside the classroom. Let’s think about all those papers that were written via information from encyclopedias, newspapers, or other printed sources of information. That information was accessed outside of the classroom and was beyond what the teacher taught. The only difference between that and information gathering today is that it is contained in huge databases that are easily searched and and easily accessed. There is still learning taking place!