Life, learning and technology: this week on the open course

May 10, 2014 in Commentary, Course Information

Life in the forums this week has been full of, well, life. Some of the activities for week 1 involved reflecting on a learning situation and consider the teaching method. Rose Heaney and James Kerr wrote a nice reply to Gary Vear’s post on central learning, directing us to transactional distance theory, explained by James here and there is an interesting post about assessment in vocational subjects by  ilearninguk here. Moira Sarsfield also described a positive interactive experience on a EdX MOOC which we’re sure some people will find interesting.
Everybody on Twitter seemed to like the blog post by Hybrid Pedagogy on Best Practices: Thoughts on a Flash Mob Mentality detailing how to ‘mix up’ learning situations, including turning the lights off!!
So we all progress into Week 2 starting on Monday, “Understanding learners and learning”, led by Keith Smyth, and this segues nicely from our reflections on the dimensions of the learning situation. As has been pointed out several times in the forums, learners themselves are a key dimension and what works with one cohort may not necessarily work with another.
Finally we saw this link retweeted here asking what Socrates would think about MOOCs which is very entertaining and made us smile – “Think again about our supposedly ideal model: master and student, sitting together, talking. It’s not as perfect as it seems. Even the smartest person in the world knows far less than what he doesn’t know.”
Elsewhere on ocTEL, this week’s webinar with nearly 100 participants and presentations from Kyriaki Anagnostopoulou, University of Bath and James Little, we explored different contexts for strategies including involving staff, engaging senior management and working in partnership with learners. If you missed this session recordings are available.
So, after the orientation of week 0, this week was all about your practice – and your strategy. Since the start of the course we have issued over 1,000 badges across different categories, with 40 participants earning explorer badges. Next week is about understanding learners needs and learning and there will be more activities to engage in, blogs to write and badges to earn.
As a participant, we hope that you have started making some useful connections and keep on tweeting, blogging and sharing #ocTEL
Phil and Maren

1 response to The open course you cannot fail…

  1. Dear Maren

    “Lurkers” vs “Silent participants”?

    Here are a few other terms that could be used:

    vicarious learners?
    silent participants?
    Non-public user?
    legitimate peripheral participator?
    virtual participant?
    marginal participant?
    passive observer?
    cognitive apprentices?
    potential member?
    proximate member?
    tacit member?

    See Let’s get more positive about the term ‘lurker’

    Which term best reflects the degree/ style/ of learning? If you read a book, but never talk about it, have you learned any less?

    Best wishes


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