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Monthly Archives: October 2010

My ultimate goal is to create virtual meeting places for all of my courses.

Students and teacher should be able to:

  • get there from any computer (device) in and out of school
  • see all materials from the course (syllabus, calendars, notes, presentations, etc.)
  • post or privately send their assignments
  • follow their progress (confidently)
  • communicate in real time
  • deliver instructions over internet to groups or individuals (instructor to students and student to student, )
  • perform assessment (online tests, quizzes, projects)
  • “strangers” have ability to “see but not touch”
  • And… If you have something else to add to this list, please do.

Help if you know any existing tool or combination of tools that can perform these tasks, or share links to similar projects.

Any help will be appreciated!!!

Last Tuesday we had Zoe’s presentation; Interesting and full of useful info. She is full of energy and ideas. Loved every minute of it.

Here are questions Alec gave us to think about.

  • What are your thoughts so far on open & networked learning?

Although this way of learning seems to be unintuitive to me, I like it. I acquire new skills, play with new tools and get in touch with colleagues from around the world, what more can I ask for?

I believe open type delivery courses will be used more and more often in high, undergraduate and graduate schools in the future. Effectiveness and affordability of existing tools and emergence of new ones will make it more attractive for institutions and students.

  • What are the pros and cons of this type of learning experience?

Pros:

We are lectured and counseled by top experts in their fields. It will be hard to achieve something like that with another type of course delivery.

Newly obtained skills are used for numerous tasks (we are scoring high according to Bloom’s taxonomy).

Cons:

Usually I dedicate time for specific tasks; it doesn’t work well in this class…

  • How can we improve this learning experience?

Honestly, I don’t have enough data to give any suggestions, yet.

  • Does any of this inform the way you teach or learn (or could/should teach and learn)?

I am using some of the discussed systems and planning to put into action “course meeting and exchange place” – Wiki-based and available to everyone.

How do you see future of courses like ours?

I am glad to read some of my course-mates’ posts about overwhelming enlightenment they experience. I can only report eagerness to understand and adopt ways and ideas of social media. Social Media’s technical skills are developed much faster than recognition of usefulness and moral benefits.

There are some exceptions: I do appreciate Google Reader, begin to adopt Delicious, LOVE reading my colleagues’ posts, and listen to lectures; somehow I fill connected to this network.

On another hand I can’t stand following people on the tweeter. Just does not make sense to check directionless internet digging, performed by dozens of people when I have great quality reading, four books, which are started and scream for extra time. ( If there are science teachers, what do you think about “Full history of everything” by Bill Bryson and if you are history teacher about “On killing” by Dave Grossman.

Every time tweeter gets opened, two or three hours are lost, producing very fresh but shallow and often contradictory information. This time should be subtracted (stolen) from planning, reading, hunting, fishing, sleeping… (that’s, pretty much it). I know it sounds like whining, but that’s how I feel.

Although,  idea that I can ask and get consultation or advice in real time shows potential.

I have read my post and recognized that everything except tweeter made perfect sense. May be, I am not that lost after all…`

Community

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

“In biological terms, a community is a group of interacting species sharing a populated environment. In human communities, intent, belief, resources, preferences, needs, risks, and a number of other conditions may be present and common, affecting the identity of the participants and their degree of cohesiveness.”

“Since the advent of the Internet, the concept of community no longer has geographical limitations, as people can now virtually gather in an online community and share common interests regardless of physical location.”

It is hard task to define what a Community is and what isn’t. Sometimes people live in the same building or the same flat but belong to different communities; on another hand some people live half-globe apart but belong to the same one. (I have seen doctors, scientist, and young anti-globalists from different countries talking about common subjects for hours without even knowing each other’s names.)

Internet represents groups and clusters of groups united by same ideas, goals, interests or even social deformities.

Internet and social media tools do not change what we are; it just simplifies communication and connects us.  Question is how simplicity and affordability can affect outcomes and influence of these communities?