ocTEL Week 3: Materials and platforms for learning technology – How can this help me with my CMALT Portfolio?

May 22, 2014 in CMALT, Course Information

In this blog post I’ll share my perspective on how this week’s topics might be used for your CMALT Portfolio, and my top tips on writing a successful portfolio. If you have experience of creating learning resources and using various technology platforms then you’ll have examples of practice you can use already.  And if you’re new to this area, then this week is an excellent starting point from which to expand and enhance your practice.

So how can ocTEL week 3 help me with my CMALT Portfolio?

This week we’ve been exploring digital learning resources and how these fit with our learners needs.  Examples of this sort of practice are perfect for including in CMALT area 2 b) An understanding of your target learners. For example, I really liked the way that Glenn from LearnPoint responded to this week’s ‘If you only do one thing…’ about the learner perspective.  He reviewed three different online resources from three different learning platforms, reflected on the pros and cons of each and how they might work for different learners.  He then went on to suggest ways these resources could be improved to make them more suitable for his learners.  This is exactly the style you should adopt when writing the reflective part in each section of your CMALT portfolio; omitting reflection is often where portfolios fail, so make sure to include it! Activity 3.1 this week got us looking at different tools and considered their application in our own context.  Examples of practice in this area can be included in 1 a) An understanding of the constraints and benefits of different technology.  Jim Kerr* posed some excellent questions to encourage reflection around this topic and would be a good basis for framing your thoughts when writing that section of your portfolio. *Published on Jim’s behalf by Martin Hawksey This activity also encouraged us to create some new resources using a variety of tools. Moira Sarsfield from Imperial College used Screencast-O-Matic to convert a PowerPoint into an animated video (embedded below) and shared it through the forum.  Sharing authentic examples of work is exactly the type of evidence CMALT assessors like to see in a portfolio so don’t be afraid of linking to websites which showcase your work; it makes for a strong piece of evidence:

This week has also highlighted the broad range of digital materials available online, and issues around determining the quality and effectiveness of these resources.  And we’ve looked at legal and ethical aspects we need to consider when providing materials online, to ensure inclusion and accessibility for all.  These topics relate to CMALT area 3Understanding and engaging with legislation, policies and standards, especially in relation to plagiarism and intellectual property rights, and also could be used as part of area 5, your specialist area, if you’ve chosen a topic in the area of creating learning materials, OER, managing or sourcing content.

My top tips for writing a successful CMALT Portfolio

A CMALT assessor is looking for evidence of your engagement with each of the five core areas of work set out in the CMALT Framework Using a set pattern to complete each area can help you to structure your portfolio and make it really easy for the assessor to find what they are looking for:

  • Describe the activity that you have undertaken, making clear your role in this.
  • Include supporting evidence e.g. real examples of work, a screenshot, a certificate, some feedback you received.
  • Reflection on the work you described:  what have you learned from it? What might you do differently next time? What was the impact of your work?

Anna Armstrong
CMALT Assessor Senior Digital Practice Advisor at Nottingham Trent University

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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