#ocTEL Week 3 Only One Thing

May 25, 2014 in Blog post, Reader

Take the perspective of a learner and spend some time using:

As usual, when I’m interested/motivated, I find it very difficult just to do one thing. It’s what one of my good friends and colleagues calls FOMS – Fear of Missing Something – or something like that. Anyway, it’s how I am and it seems to become even more so in open, online, resource-rich environments – very time-consuming or chronophage, as we say here in France !

Anyway, all that just to say that I found it hard to limit myself to one of each. Perhaps it’s just plain old greed ;-)

Kahn Academy – Art History – 1960-  Post-Colonialist :

I enjoyed the videos I watched and was engaged by the discussions. However, it didn’t feel much like a « class ». The idea of getting points did appeal to me (as the badge system here on ocTEL has). In the question forum there seemed to be a great mix of « levels » and the questions ranged from the very naive to a quite sophisticated level. I was also a bit thrown by the fact that most of the questions dated from almost two years ago and that, rightly or wrongly, got me questioning the relevance/appeal/ of the whole thing. I think I will quite possibly use this as a useful resource in the future for getting an overview of the subject.

The first thing I tried on the ElearningExamples site was : This turned out to be a bit of a waste of time as I couldn’t play as it needs a mouse with a scroll wheel and I was travelling and only had my little hybrid PC/tablet with me.

I tried a couple more that didn’t really go anywhere for me :

I couldn’t find where to try the game ! I just kept being sent back to an article and never found the way to play the thing.

This was quick, easy and fun and revealed what the world has known about me for years :


  • The next one I tried was an interesting little activity aimed at seeing what people know about the positions of the different presidential election candiates on certain ideas and seeing how closely you personally identify with those. It also allows people to get a bit more information on the stances of the candidates on these topics. Rather unsurprisingly, I did not agree with very much that Mitt Romney was touting. by USA Today – very much « grand public »The last thing I looked at was the iEthicS simulation:
  •  I really liked this and can see many, many applications, variations and adaptations of it. The first thing that grabbed me was the quality  of the videos, the « naturalness » of the actors and the general « authenticity » that seemed to surround the situation – I think here I’m probably  being very « naive » as I know next to nothing about the subject – that has advantages and disadvantages – but I was caught up right from the start in the situation and felt involved and wanted to find out what was going to happen. This kind of « critical incident » approach is exactly the kind of thing I can use in my own classes about intercultural communication and working in intercultural teams and I would love to be able to make videos of this quality based on the vignettes and case studies I have.
  • The different resources appealed to different learner levels and in different ways. I personally enjoyed learning some new things (Khan Academy), testing my knowledge about a specific subject area (the USA Today political policies game), learning things about myself (the 6 personas of creativity game) and then finally the iEthics simulation which was a rich, multi-level learning experience which I am still mulling over 24hrs later. What would be really interesting would be finding a way to blend all of the different elements into one learning activity. That’s an exciting challenge ;-)


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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