A talk in Spanish

September 11th, 2014

This afternoon I am doing an online talk to Ibiza. I am going to attempt to do it in Spanish. Here is the transcript and a link to the slides. Let’s hope my Spanish isn’t too bad and that the audience understand me! I must be mad!

Gracias por la invitación . Voy a tratar de dar esta charla en español, pero algunos pueden estar en Inglés .  Soy irlandés , pero vivo en Inglaterra. Tengo un doctorado en Química y comencé a trabajar en e-learning hace más de twent años . Tengo dos hijas , tienen quince y diecinueve años. Soy un catedratica de aprender la innovación en la universidad de Leicester . Tres cosas sobre mí que no están en la internet . Odio las alturas , me encanta la pais Irán y no me gusta viajar.

Los temas de mi charla son:

·      La creciente importancia de las tecnologías
·      Una línea de tiempo e-learning
·      Tecnologías Emergentes
·      Diseño de Aprendizaje
·      Recursos Educativos Abiertos
·      Cursos Enlinea Masivos Abiertos

Así es que las tecnologías disruptivas o pedagogías ? Creo que es los dos . John Naughton en su libro enumera nueve características de Internet . Una es que disruptiva es una característica no una falla. Me gusta esta cita de Einstein . Tenemos que ir más allá de recordar el conocimiento , para permitir a los estudiantes a ser creativos , capaces de resolver problemas . Enlace de lista es un gran video corto por Ken Robinson , argumenta sistema educativo actual no está actualizado y tiene que ser cambiado radicalmente .

Este corto video es un ejemplo de tecnología disruptiva . Superficies sin costura y trabajar a través de dispositivos . Es evidente que esto tiene un enorme potencial para el aprendizaje.  ¿Entonces por qué está aprendiendo e- importante? Creo que hay dos razones . En primer lugar para el aprendizaje.

 

·      Apoyar la interacción , la comunicación y la colaboración

·      El desarrollo de habilidades de alfabetización digital

·      La promoción de diferentes enfoques pedagógicos

·      Fomentar la creatividad y la innovación

·      Para conectar a los estudiantes más allá de la clase formal 

 

Y más en general para equipar a los estudiantes para la vida y el trabajo en un contexto cambiante dinámica.

 

·      Para Preparar a los estudiantes para un futuro incierto

·      Para mejorar las oportunidades de empleabilidad

·      Debido a la importante función de la tecnología en la sociedad

 

Esta figura muestra una línea de tiempo de las intervenciones tecnológicas importantes de los últimos treinta años. Se inicia en los años ochenta con la aparición de herramientas para crear ricas , multimedia interactiva . La web surgió en el 93 , increíble pensar que es sólo 21 años de edad! No podríamos haber imaginado el impacto increíble la web tendría en nuestras vidas y nuestros hijos no pueden imaginar un mundo sin ella . Entonces el concepto de objetos de aprendizaje surgió la idea de crear un recurso y el intercambio y la reutilización . Sistemas de Gestión de Aprendizaje fueron importantes por dos razones . Las primeras instituciones tecnologías realizadas ya no eran innovaciones periféricas sino una parte fundamental del servicio que se ofrece a los estudiantes. En segundo lugar nos dieron un lugar seguro para los profesores para crear recursos y apoyar el aprendizaje en línea . La primera generación de dispositivos móviles era muy diferente de la pequeña y teléfonos inteligentes y las tablas de hoy . La investigación sobre Learning Design surgió a finales de los años noventa , la exploración de nuevos enfoques para apoyar a los maestros en su práctica de diseño . Tecnologías de juego llegaron después. Seguido por el concepto de los recursos educativos abiertos , promovido por organizaciones como la Fundación Hewlett y la UNESCO . Los medios sociales fue el siguiente, en la actualidad hay una variedad de maneras en las que los alumnos pueden comunicarse y colaborar con los demás. Los mundos virtuales eran populares a mediados de los años noventa , pero no son muy evidentes ahora . La segunda generación de dispositivos móviles eran más compacto y más elegante , e incluyó los libros electrónicos . Cursos en Línea Abiertas masivas son ahora una importante tecnología disruptiva , desafiando a los modelos de negocio educativos existentes . Por último , el más reciente tema de interés es ‘ Analytics ‘ de aprendizaje , la capacidad de utilizar los datos de los Sistemas de Gestión de Aprendizaje para entender mejor el aprendizaje del estudiante .

 

En cuanto a las tecnologías emergentes , los informes anuales Horizon el New Media Consortium son útiles en términos de lo que indica las tecnologías que pueden ser importantes para uno, tres y cinco años. En el plazo de un año enmarcar las listas de informe actual .  • En línea , híbrido y el aprendizaje colaborativo • El uso de los medios sociales en el aprendizaje  En tres años  • La sociedad creadora , por ejemplo 3D -printing • Los datos que apoyan el aprendizaje y es decir la evaluación analítica de aprendizaje  En cinco años  • Enfoques más ágiles para cambiar • Maneras de ayudar a hacer el aprendizaje en línea más natural y sin fisuras

 

La Universidad Abierta del Reino Unido tiene un informe anual denominado innovando pedagogía. En él se enumeran los diez cosas siguientes como importante

 

·      MOOCs

·      Placas para el aprendizaje de acreditación

·      Analítica de Aprendizaje

·      El aprendizaje Seamless

·      Aprender con los demás

·      Repensar la publicación científica

·      Aprendizaje Geo

·      Juegos para el aprendizaje

·      Cultura Hacedor

·      Consulta Ciudadanía 

 

A pesar del enorme potencial de las tecnologías para el aprendizaje , hay una serie de barreras . Por ejemplo :

·      Los maestros no tienen las alfabetizaciones digitales necesarias

·      No hay recompensas para la enseñanza

·      No es competencia de otros proveedores

·      La dificultad de la innovación de escala

·      ¿Cómo asegurar la inclusión social

 

 

Esta figura ilustra el cambio de la Web 1.0 a la Web 2.0 , desde una web staic pasivo a uno que es más interactiva y participativa . Las características incluyen:

 

·      La capacidad de tener critiquing pares

·      El contenido generado por los usuarios

·      Prácticas Abiertas

·      Distribuido a través de herramientas y contextos

·      agregación colectiva

·      La capacidad de mezclar las herramientas y crear un entorno de aprendizaje personal 

 

Este es un buen video que muestra las implicaciones de las redes sociales en nuestras vidas .

 

Esta diapositiva muestra cuatro enfoques pedagógicos .

 

·      pedagogías asociativas dónde atención se centra en el individuo a través de la asociación y el refuerzo , los ejemplos incluyen e- formación y ejercicios y prácticas .

·      pedagogías constructivistas , donde la atención se centra en la construcción de los conocimientos previos , los ejemplos incluyen el aprendizaje basado en la indagación

·      pedagogías situacional donde la atención se centra en el aprendizaje en un contexto ya través del diálogo , los ejemplos incluyen juegos de rol y el aprendizaje a través de juegos

·      pedagogías conectivistas , donde la atención se centra en el aprendizaje en un contexto distribuido con otros , los ejemplos incluyen el aprendizaje reflexivo y dialógica . 

 

Ahora quiero mirar a los cuatro tipos de pedagogías :

 

·      Ejercicios y Prácticas

·      El aprendizaje basado en la indagación

·      Situado aprendizaje

·      El aprendizaje inmersivo

 

Esta diapositiva muestra cuatro Esta es una captura de pantalla de la herramienta de e - evaluación de la Open University , OpenMark . Es una herramienta muy sofisticada , los alumnos pueden conectarse con otros instrumentos , en este ejemplo una herramienta de dibujo química y obtener retroalimentación detallada.  También hay muchas aplicaciones muy buenas para el aprendizaje . Por ejemplo , aquí hay un ejemplo para el aprendizaje de idiomas . Aquí se hace clic en la imagen de una manzana y la rana come. El segundo ejemplo es el de mejorar las habilidades de escucha . El tercero es un completo diccionario Inglés - Español .  Dos ejemplos para el aprendizaje basado en la indagación . Mike Sharples y Eileen Scanlon tenían un proyecto llamado mensaje personal , que utiliza las tecnologías para el aprendizaje basado en la investigación para la Ciencia . Doug Clow desarrolló una herramienta, llamada iSpot , para aumentar la comprensión pública de la ciencia .  El proyecto de investigación Personal desarrolló una herramienta llamada nQuire , lo hicieron una revisión de la literatura sobre el aprendizaje basado en la investigación y desarrolló este marco para las etapas de la investigación. Esto se ha incrustado en una herramienta en un dispositivo inteligente. Aquí están las fotos de los estudiantes que usan el dispositivo para llevar a cabo una investigación.  iSpot es un sitio para subir el avistamiento de flora y fauna . Ayuda a aumentar la comprensión de la gente de la Ciencia , pero los datos es utilizada por los científicos reales a una mejor comprensión de la ecología cambiante del Reino Unido .

 

Hay muchos ejemplos del uso de los mundos virtuales para apoyar el aprendizaje situado. Por ejemplo un juego de roles en la medicina , exposiciones de arte virtuales y apoyar el aprendizaje de idiomas . Esta aplicación proporciona traducción instantánea , texto y auditiva , entre dos lenguas .  Por último , en términos de aprendizaje de inmersión , google tiene una herramienta llamada Google inmersión. Traduce parte del texto de una página en un idioma diferente. Si pasa el ratón sobre el texto cambiará entre las dos lenguas . Así que aquí estoy leyendo sobre MOOCs , pero mejorando indirectamente mi vocabulario español .  Es evidente que existe un enorme potencial para las tecnologías de apoyo al aprendizaje . Las redes sociales ofrecen una variedad de formas en las que los alumnos pueden comunicarse y colaborar . Hay muchos recursos gratuitos y cursos . Sin embargo las tecnologías no están siendo plenamente explotados y hay un montón de ejemplos de mala pedagogía. Los maestros dicen que no tienen tiempo y no tienen las habilidades de alfabetización digital necesarias .  Un grupo de nosotros hemos estado trabajando en una nueva área de investigación , diseño de aprendizaje , que tiene como objetivo hacer frente a esto y ayudar a los maestros a tomar decisiones de diseño más informadas basadas pedagógicamente y hacer un uso adecuado de las tecnologías . Recientemente hemos publicado el documento ” La ‘ Declaración de Larnaca en Learning Design “, que describe nuestro enfoque .  He desarrollado los 7Cs de marco Learning Design , que tiene una serie de recursos y actividades para apoyar el diseño . Se inicia con la Conceptualizar C , se trata de crear una visión para el curso . El siguiente es el C C Crear que se trata de articular lo que se crearán recursos (como texto , audio y vídeo) y los recursos libres se utilizará . Los dos siguientes son Cs sobre el fomento de la comunicación y la colaboración . El Considere C se trata de promover la reflexión y ayudar a los alumnos demuestran cómo se han alcanzado los resultados de aprendizaje , es decir, es el elemento de evaluación. El Combine C mira todo el diseño desde diferentes perspectivas , por ejemplo, mirando cómo los estudiantes de tiempo mucho más están gastando en diferentes tipos de actividades . Por último , la Consolidar C se trata de poner el diseño en un contexto de aprendizaje de la vida real y evaluar su eficacia .

 

Un ejemplo de un recurso asociado con la Conceptualizar C es la actividad Características del curso . Este consiste en un paquete de cartas , que describen los siguientes aspectos del curso :  Los tipos de enfoques pedagógicos Los principios de alto nivel Las formas de orientación y apoyo La naturaleza de los contenidos y actividades que los alumnos harán Los tipos de reflexión y demostración ¿Y cómo se facilita la comunicación y la colaboración.  Esto muestra el perfil acitivty que es un reource bajo el Combine C. Los tipos de actividades que el estudiante lo hacen son :  De asimilación : leer, escuchar o ver El manejo de la información, tales como la manipulación de datos en una hoja de cálculo La comunicación , por ejemplo en un foro Producción , por ejemplo la creación de un compuesto químico o un modelo arquitectónico Experiencial de aprendizaje , por ejemplo, ejercicios y prácticas o trabajos basados ??en Adaptación , por ejemplo, el modelado o simulación Evaluación  La herramienta puede ser utilizada para indicar la cantidad de tiempo que los estudiantes pasan en cada uno de estos. También puede ser utilizado por los alumnos . Aprendí español hace unos cinco años en línea , los cursos fueron excelentes , buenos recursos - libros y DVDs , pero no había suficiente en la práctica de hablar, y hablar es mi habilidad más débil . Así que hay una relación directa entre las actividades que hacen los estudiantes y su aprendizaje .  La etapa final es el guión gráfico . Esto muestra las listas de las semanas y los temas a continuación, la parte superior . A la izquierda se muestran los resultados del aprendizaje. En el medio están las actividades de los estudiantes lo hacen. Por encima de estos son los recursos que se dedican a . Por ejemplo, en la semana uno que ven un video y leer un documento. A continuación se enumeran las cosas que crean. Así que en la semana uno , escriben un ensayo. En la segunda semana , escriben un blog , en las últimas semanas que hacen una presentación en grupo y escribir un diario de reflexión sobre su aprendizaje . Bajo esta es la evaluación . En la semana uno del profesor proporciona retroalimentación formativa en el ensayo. En la semana dos, compañeros proporcionan comentarios sobre la entrada en el blog . Por último, el profesor proporciona retroalimentación sumativa en la presentación del grupo y el diario reflexivo . La parte final es asegurarse de que se cumplen todos los resultados de aprendizaje .  Esta es una foto de un guión gráfico producido durante un taller .

 

En el METIS proyecto financiado por la UE , hemos creado una herramienta de diseño de aprendizaje en línea llamado ILDE ( Learning Design Marco Integrado ) , que se puede utilizar para crear un diseño e implementarlo en un Sistema de Gestión del Aprendizaje . Este es un breve vídeo sobre ILDE en español .  Ahora quiero mirar a los REA y MOOCs . Ahora es más de diez años desde que surgió el concepto de REA . Promovido por organizaciones como la Fundación Hewlett y la UNESCO , con la visión de que la educación es un derecho humano fundamental y debe ser libre. En la actualidad hay cientos de depósitos de REA y un montón de instituciones tienen presencia en iTunesU . El New York Times afirmó que el 2012 fue el año de la MOOC .  A pesar del potencial , los REA no se ha utilizado ampliamente . En El proyecto OPAL miramos más de sesenta iniciativas OER y derivamos un conjunto de prácticas en torno a la creación y el uso de los REA . Hemos producido el MetroMap OPAL , que ayuda a las partes interesadas ( responsables políticos , líderes institucionales , docentes y alumnos ) para crear una visión para su uso de REA y un plan de implementación .  En un proyecto relacionado , POERUP , hemos documentado más de 300 iniciativas de REA y hicimos una serie de informes detallados por países y tres informes de política .  MOOCs surgieron en 2008 , con la Connectivst Conocimiento MOOC por Siemens y otros. Hay una bonita evaluación de este por Fini . En la actualidad hay muchos consorcios MOOC , incluyendo edx , Udacity y más recientemente FutureLearn y Open2Study . Hay un bonito video en MOOCs por Dave Cormiers . Una serie de enlaces útiles sobre MOOCs incluye : una lista de MOOCs , la serie de blogs EFQUEL en MOOCs y calidad y, finalmente, la lista de los artículos ICDE MOOC .  Sin embargo , el valor de MOOCs se impugna En el lado positivo , que son gratuitas , y tienen el potencial para apoyar la inclusión social. Permiten a los participantes a ser parte de una comunidad global distribuida . En el lado negativo , hay muy altas tasas de abandono y muchos argumentan que se trata de aprender los ingresos no los resultados del aprendizaje y que MOOCs son sólo un ejercicio de marketing . Hay un bonito video de un debate sobre los pros y los contras de MOOCs , desde la conferencia ASCILITE .

 

Creo que el concepto de xMOOCs (basados ??en el aprendizaje Didáctico indivual) y cMOOCs (basados ??en conectivista aprender con otros) es demasiado simple. He desarrollado una taxonomía para describir MOOCs. Se compone de doce dimensiones. Los tres primeros tienen que ver con el contexto, el grado de apertura del MOOC es, cuán grande y cuán diversos son los alumnos. Los otros nueve dimensiones tienen que ver con el aprendizaje. ¿Qué es multimedia incluyen, cómo se anima a la comunicación, la colaboración y la reflexión. ¿Qué tipo de itinerario de aprendizaje se proporciona? ¿Qué formas de control de calidad están allí. Si hay alguna certificación o enlace en la educación formal. Y, finalmente, la cantidad de la autonomía del alumno. Esto también se puede utilizar para diseñar y evaluar MOOCs.

 

 

Entonces, ¿cuál es el futuro de la educación? MOOCs son sin duda un ejemplo de una tecnología de punta, que está desafiando a las instituciones educativas tradicionales y sus modelos de negocio. Necesitamos nuevos enfoques pedagógicos a utilizar realmente los beneficios de las tecnologías. Finalmente creo que estamos viendo una desagregación de la educación. En el aprendiz futuro no pueden hacerlo grados completos, pero puede pagar por:

 

• Los recursos de alta calidad

• itinerarios de aprendizaje guiadas

• Alguna forma de apoyo

• Acreditación

 

Gracias por su atención, espero que haya encontrado esto útil. Si usted está interesado en esto y quiere saber más Tengo un libro sobre diseño del aprendizaje y actualmente estoy escribiendo un segundo, lo que tendrá un montón de ejemplos prácticos de diseños para apoyar diferentes enfoques pedagógicos. Más información también está disponible en SlideShare, y mi blog.

Disruptive innovation and the emergence of the PLE+

August 26th, 2014

I am currently in Kuala Lumpur doing a keynote at the 5th International Personal Learning Environment (PLE) conference. The focus of my talk is on the notion of ‘PLE+’, i.e. I want to argue that we are entering a third phase of learning environments; the first are Virtual Learning Environments (where tools are provided by the institutional system, and where the teacher chooses which are used for their courses), the second are Personal Learning Environments (where learners create their own learning space, mixing and matching institutional tools with cloud-based tools). The third generation, PLE+, builds on this and relates to the impact of ‘The Internet of Things’, and  seamless learning across different contexts, surfaces and devices; in other words, learning across digital and physical spaces.

I want to begin my talk by considering the notion of disruptive innovation, originally coined by Christensten:

A disruptive innovation is an innovation that helps create a new market and value network, and eventually disrupts an existing market and value network (over a few years or decades), displacing an earlier technology. The term is used in business and technology literature to describe innovations that improve a product or service in ways that the market does not expect, typically first by designing for a different set of consumers in a new market and later by lowering prices in the existing market.

For me there are four key facets of disruptive innovation: change, something new, unexpected, and changing mindsets. We have seen many examples of technologies that have been disruptive in the last thirty years or so; from the Internet, through mobile devices and more recently Open Educational Resources (OER) and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).

But first I want to step back. I like using an ecological metaphor in terms of technology adoption, drawing in particular on the work of Gibson, on affordances. So technologies may have potential affordances or characteristics but these will only be realised in relation to a particular individual, we need time to appropriate the technology into our practice. And sometimes a technology is subverted and used in unexpected ways. Below is a picture of an iPad that I took at a hotel I was at last week in Uppsala, Sweden. The iPad is being used to control the juice machine, you click on the pick of the juice you want, and then again to stop when the glass is full. I am sure this is not a use that Apple had anticipated the iPad would be used for!

ipad_juice.png

Of course there are numerous reports, describing key emergent technologies and their potential impact on learning. The NMC Horizon reports, the OU UK’s Innovating Pedagogy reports, and the TED talks. I want to focus in on four examples: two videos on intelligent surfaces (‘A day made of glass’ and ‘Technology in education – a future classroom’), the concept of the ‘Internet of Things’ and a recent article on ‘The most connected man’. I want to allow space for the audience to discuss these and to consider to what extent they are innovative and/or disruptive, as well as thinking about their potential use in a learning context.

I am then going to show Gartner’s most recent Hype cycle and point out that the Internet of Things is currently at the hype of the curve, whilst virtual reality is well down, and speech recognition software has reached the plateau stage.

Focusing in on disruption in a learning context I will look at three examples: the flipped classroom, mobile learning and open learning.

I will then introduce the concept of PLE+, beginning by listing the four things that are needed to facilitate learning:

  • Guidance and Support
  • Content and Activities
  • Communication and Collaboration
  • Reflection and Demonstration

These can be achieved in a variety of ways of course and through different pedagogical approaches. The HoTEL project provides a nice visualisation of pedagogical approaches and their key features; so associative pedagogies are about stimulus and responses such as drill and practice, whereas constructivist pedagogies are about building on prior knowledge and are more task orientated.

The below lists the key characteristics of VLEs, PLES, and PLE+s

  •  VLEs: Institutionally owned, teacher controlled, digitally based
  • PLEs: Mix of institutional and cloud-based, learner controlled, nebulous set of components, digitally based
  • PLE+: Mix of institutional and cloud based, learner controlled, nebulous set of components, digitally and physically based.

Finally, drawing on the work of Gibson, Pea, Perkins, Solomon, Wertsch and others, I list the following as what I think are the characteristics of a PLE+:

  • Relates to concepts of distributed cognition and PersonPlus
  • We leave learning trails
  • Our learning  environment is culturally constructed
  • We co-evolve with our environment
  • Technologies have affordances
  • Blurring of physical and digital

I will finish by suggesting that we need new approaches to design to create effective PLE+ and will put forward the 7Cs of Learning Design as a means of achieving this.  Of particular note here is the fact that I argue that learners can use the tools associated with the 7Cs of Learning Design to create their own PLE+.

   

DCU launch

August 8th, 2014

dcu_launch.jpg

I’ve just returned from a trip to Dublin, where I am visiting professor at Dublin City University (DCU), working with Mark Brown and his team. Mark is the director of the new National Institute for Digital Learning (NIDL). Yesterday was the launch of a new digital technologies initiative, called Connected. It is DCU’s new offering in terms of flexible and distance learning. It includes a new digital learning environment, called LOOP. The event was well attended with around 120 registered. The president of DCU, Professor Brian MacCraith opened the event and described how the initiative linked into the institutional mission, in terms of transforming lives and society, as well as national strategy. Mark Brown unveiled Connected and peppered his talk with three very powerful videos from DCU learners, explaining how DCU had literally transformed their lives.  Professor MacCraith said:

Today’s announcement is much more than a brand launch – rather it is a public commitment by DCU to embrace the best of digital technologies to enhance the learner experience of students, both nationally and globally. Whether you live in Sligo, Seville or Shanghai, DCU Connected provides access to world-class online education, with international expertise and locally-relevant courses designed to meet your needs.

Mark Brown stated that:

DCU Connected is the evolution of our commitment to flexible learning but with a more contemporary and clearly international focus.

I began my short talk by stating that these were interesting and challenging time for Higher Education and that digital technologies offered a plethora of ways in which learners could interact with rich multimedia and ways of communicating and collaborating with peers. I stated that there was a need to move beyond knowledge recall, to enabling learners to become critical thinkers and problem solvers. We need to equip learners to face a complex and dynamic future, where they will be doing jobs that do not even exist today. The new NIDL that Mark Brown directs is a vibrant and strong research centre, which will inform the development of the Connected initiative in the coming months. NIDL will be supported by an International Advisory Board of experts in the field.

Connected is an important initiative not just for DCU, but for the whole of Ireland. I concluded with a couple of statistics, that demonstrate the timeliness of Connected. Tony Bates states that to meet the demands of future leaners we would need to build a brick and mortar institution every week. Clearly e-learning is the only solution. Finally, UNESCO state that more than 10 Million learners cannot afford formal education, Open Educational Resources (OER) and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), offer a viable alternative for them. 

I am looking forward very much to working with Mark and the NIDL team over the coming months in terms of developing this very exciting initiative. 

The Irish Times reported on the launch yesterday, the link  can be found here. The new DCU Connected website will be available from Monday 11th August.

Day to day

June 26th, 2014

diary.png

Every now and then I think it is useful to reflect on the range of activities I do as part of my day job. Over the last couple of days I have been working on a number of things.  

  • A chapter on the 7Cs of Learning Design, a draft of which I circulated via social media. I have already received a number of useful comments.
  • Reading a thesis that I am examining next week.
  • Reading a PhD upgrade report and writing the pre-via examiner’s report.
  • A meeting with the medical school about their use of iPads.
  • Evaluation of the MOOCs we ran as part of FutureLearn.
  • An online meeting about a review we are doing of open accreditation process for non-formal and informal learning.
  • A presentation to the VC on our research and teaching activities.
  • An online meeting to discuss the EDEN research workshop and associated programme.
  • Participating in social media.
  • A blog post on an evaluation checklist for courses.

So lots of writing and communicating; a mix of research-focused and teaching-related activities. It’s interesting also to reflect on one’s approaches to working on something. So I was dreading writing the 7Cs chapter and kept putting it off, but finally got my teeth into it and it was very satisfying to print out a copy this morning. 

An evaluation checklist for course design

June 25th, 2014

checklist.jpeg

I am currently working on a chapter on the 7Cs of Learning Design, for a book that James Dalziel is editing. Today I have been working on the Consolidate C and in particular I have been writing about rubrics and checklists to evaluate the effectiveness of a design. Below is one example, comments welcome

  • Are learning outcomes indicated?
  • Do the learning outcomes use active verbs?
  • Are there clear signposts for navigation and labelling (i.e. are there clear headings and is it easy for the participants to navigate around?
  • Is the learning time associated with resources and activities indicated?
  • Is the material logically structured and coherent (are terms explained, do sections follow each other??
  • Is there an appropriate mix of multimedia?
  • Are videos kept to below 10 minutes?
  • Is there a clear and logical learning pathway
  • Is the way in which technologies are to be used made clear to the learners?
  • Is the content coherent and logically structured?
  • Are the pedagogical approaches explicit
  • In what ways are communication and collaboration encouraged?
  • Are all the materials accessible (variable fonts, suitable colours)?
  • Do all the links work
  • Are the activities consistent with the platform’s functionality (i.e. discussion forum, feedback mechanism)?
  • Are the materials open (are there any technological access issues)?
  • What pedagogical approaches are used?
  • Are sections given clear timeframes
  • How are activities monitored?
  • Is there is clear minimum to complete and is there a clear learning timescale?
  • What assessment elements are there?

Disruptive education

June 18th, 2014

On Monday I did a talk at a National Forum seminar at Athlone Institute of Technology. The theme was the flipped classroom. I focused on the concept of disruptive education and looked at this from four perspectives: the flipped classroom, opening up education, e-pedagogies, and Learning Design. In terms of the flipped classroom I argued that the concept was about ‘flipping’ from a traditional lecture–centric approach to one that was learner-centric and activity-centric. The idea is that learners watch videos in advance covering the key concepts, this frees the face-to-face classroom up for discussion and activities. I argued that the benefits were that this enabled the learning intervention to be more collaborative and problem-based. The diagram below illustrates the components that are associated with the flipped classroom, most importantly it is learner centric. 

slide1.jpg

Opening up education has gained increasing interest in recent years, partly through the emergence of Open Educational Resources, but also more recently through Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). These are disruptive in that they are challenging existing business models for traditional educational institutions. In a world where resources and indeed courses are increasingly free, what is the role of a traditional institution, what are the benefits of learners paying for courses? I described the MOOC classification schema and argued that this could be used to describe, design and evaluate MOOCs. For e-pedagogies I described four examples of how technologies could be used to promote different pedagogical approaches. Finally, I argued that design is the key challenge facing education today, teachers need support to make informed design decisions that are pedagogically effective and make appropriate use of digital technologies. I introduced the 7Cs of Learning Design framework as one means of achieving this.

 

National Institute for Digital Learning

June 18th, 2014

nidl.jpg

I’ve just got back from Ireland, where I had my first taste of being an adjunct professor with Dublin City University (DCU). I am working with Mark Brown who is heading up the new National Institute for Digital Learning (NIDL). On Monday Mark and I talked at a National Forum seminar in Athlone. The theme was the flipped classroom. I focused on the concept of disruptive education and looked at disruption from four perspectives: the flipped classroom, opening up education, e-pedagogies, and Learning Design. The focus of Mark’s talk was on quality, built around a metaphor of ice cream. Our talks were followed by a talk from Brian McCabe from the NUI Galway, where he provided a practical description of his implementation of the flipped classroom. On Tuesday I spent the morning with the NIDL team talking through the 7Cs of Learning Design and discussing how it could be applied at DCU.  I’m really looking forward to working with Mark and the team to take NIDL forward, I think it is a really exciting initiative. Watch this space as they say!

Persona cards

June 10th, 2014

One of the most important design decisions you need to make is considering the nature of the learners who will take your course or module. Students on a first-year undergraduate Mathematics course will be very different from post-graduates undertaking a Continuous Professional Development course or those taking an evening class in Spanish. The Persona cards are a useful way of articulating the nature of typical learners on your module or course.

The persona view enables teachers to create personas for the types of learners that are going to complete the design activity; a class of first year 18-year old Maths undergraduates, will have very difficult needs to an online language course for adults. Hence articulating the persona for the learners will help guide what kind of teaching intervention is appropriate for those learners. Factors to take into account include: age, sex, cultural background, discipline, level of technological competence and motivations for doing the learning.

Personas are a tool for sharing our understanding of the expected nature and types of learners.[1]  Nielsen (Nielsen 2013) states that:

The persona method has developed from being a method for IT system development to being used in many other contexts, including development of products, marketing, planning of communication, and service design. [..] Common understanding is that the persona is a description of a fictitious person, but whether this description is based on assumptions or data is not clear, and opinions also different on what the persona description should cover.

It is important to try and be as detailed as possible when describing a persona. An understanding of the characteristics of potential learners will help inform and shape the design process, to ensure that it is targeted at the right level in terms of learners’ competencies and motivations. Cooper (1999) argues that:

Personas are the single most powerful design tool that we use. They are the foundation for all subsequent Goal-Directed design. Personas allow us to see the scope and nature of the design problem. They make it clear exactly what the user’s goals are, so that we can what the product must do – and can get away with not doing.

Tables 1 and 2 show two personas, for Joe and Marie. The personas illustrate the very different characteristics of the learners, in terms of their background and motivations and goals.

 

 

Name: Joe

Gender: Male

Age: 19

Lives in: Gloucester, UK with his parents

Likes football and music

Education and experience

Joe has had a conventional education completing 9 GSCEs and 3 A levels (in Chemistry, Physics and Maths). He works in a local restaurant as a waiter at the weekend. He has not travelled much outside of the UK. His hobbies include watching football and playing in a local band

Roles and responsibilities

He has worked as a waiter for two years and now supervises new employees. He runs a computer programming club, which has 15 members. They meet every Sunday more for two hours. He publishes a monthly newsletter on their activities.

Technical skills

He is a proficient internet user and has good programming skills, which he has learnt in his spare time. He has a laptop and an iPad. He uses the latter primarily for surfing the Internet and keeping in touch with friends.

Subject domain skills and knowledge

He has good science skills and a reasonable level of general knowledge, although he does not keep up much with current affairs.

Motivation and desires

He wants to get a job in the IT industry as a computer programmer, he is passionate about programming and is very gifted at it.

Goals and expectations

His goal is to complete a computer science course and then get a job in the IT industry.

Obstacles to their success

His one weakness is a lack of concentration. He does not have very good study skills and tends not to put too much effort into his learning.

Unique assets

He is a gifted computer programmer and is very sociable and confident with lots of friends.

Table 1: Joe’s Persona

 

 

Name: Maria

Gender: Female

Age: 45

Lives in: London, UK with her husband and two children

Likes classical music, theatre and reading

Education and experience

Marie left school having completed 5 O’ Levels. She later returned to college to complete a HND in cooking. She has run her own Italian restaurant for 15 years. Her parents were Italian and moved to the UK when Maria was ten years old.

Roles and responsibilities

Her restaurant business is very successful. She employs five people, including a full-time chief. She has overall responsibility for the business, including the finances and deciding on the menus, in conjunction with the chief.

Technical skills

She does not use the Internet very much and has relatively low levels of IT proficiency. She does own a desktop computer but using it mainly for sending and receiving emails.

Subject domain skills and knowledge

She is more practically orientated than academic. Her Italian is rusty, she hasn’t practiced it much since moving to the UK when she was 10.

Motivation and desires

Her husband and her would like to move back to Italy when their children (19 and 19) have left home. They would like to set up a restaurant business there. As a result she wants to improve her Italian skills. She is not interested in getting a qualification per se, she just wants to be proficient in Italian.

Goals and expectations

Her goal is to complete an online intermediate Italian course with the Open University, UK and then to move to Italy and set up a new restaurant business.

Obstacles to their success

The main problem she has is a lack of time, she is kept busy with the restaurant (working very long hours) and her family. The OU course requires 7 hours a week as a minimum, she will need to be very focused and motivated to ensure she meets this commitment. In addition, she will need support to begin with to develop her Internet skills, given that the course is wholly delivered online.

Unique assets

She is very practical and has a good business sense. Once she commits to something she is very driven. She has good general language skills and that fact that she lived in Italy for ten years should give her a good head start.

Table 2: Maria’s Persona



 

[1] The following is taken from http://www.ld-grid.org/resources/representations-and-languages/personas

 

[2] https://openclipart.org/people/jonata/jonata_Boy_with_headphone.svg

 

[3] https://openclipart.org/detail/173498/retro-woman-2-by-tikigiki-173498

Good practice in the design and delivery of MOOCs

May 14th, 2014

We are currently evaluating the two MOOCs were are delivering on the FutureLearn platform. In addition, we are currently finalising material for a Technology-Enhanced Learning MOOC as part of the EMMA project. From the findings we have been able to derive the following good practice guides for the design and delivery of MOOCs.

  • Keep the MOOC relatively short; evaluation suggests that longer MOOCs result in high dropout rates and low learner satisfaction. Four to eight weeks is the recommended length of a MOOC.
  • Clearly articulate the number of anticipated learning hours per week; again keep these to a minimum; around 3 – 4 hours is recommended.
  • Have a clear and logical learning pathway.
  • Consider having core and extension activities.
  • Indicate the amount of learning time associated with each learning activity,
  • Make clear why participants are expected to use digital technologies (such as forums, wikis, blogs, etc.) and in particular clarify what are the perceived benefits. For example, wikis as a good means of collaborative working, blogs for reflection, or e-portfolios as a means of participants evidencing and collating how they have achieved the intended learning outcomes.
  • Keep video under 10 minutes, audio can be longer
  • Ensure that learning outcomes are indicated at the beginning of each week, use active verbs that are measurable.
  • Ensure content is coherent and logically structured, with a clear beginning, middle and end.
  • Indicate what, if any, tutor support is provided.
  • Articulate the pedagogical approach used, for example is reflective learning encouraged, or dialogic learning.
  • During design try and focus on activities rather than content.
  • Consider carefully what collaborative elements are included and how these are organised.
  • Try and ensure that each week is organized in the same way so that it is easy for the participants to orientate themselves.
  • Keep participants motivated and on track by providing a weekly email update, summarizing the key points covered and signposting to the following week’s activities.
  • Include mini quizzes at the end of each week, to enable participants to assess their learning.
  • Provide extension activities, which are both remedial and advanced in nature, to cater for a diversity of participants.  
  • Consider having a short (5 minutes) video introducing the week’s content and activities, this provides a more personal touch.
  • Have a number of synchronous hour-long sessions, perhaps one at the beginning of the MOOC to provide an overview and enable participants to outline what they hope to get out of the MOOC, one in the middle providing a space for Q&A and any points for clarification, and one at the end to provide a space to reflect on their experience.
  • Try and ensure that all the resources are open and CC licenced.
  • Provide a discussion thread on the forum to enable participants to introduce themselves, their experience of the subject to date and what they hope to get out of the participation in the MOOC.
  • Consider having a particular structure, for example:
  •  
  • Connect, Activate/Demonstrate, Consolidate
  • Connect – an introductory section to orient the participant to the week’s content and activities.
  • Activate/Demonstrate – the main focus of content and activities for the week.
  • Consolidate – the reflective element of the week, where participants reflect on what they have learnt and consider the relevance to their own practice.
  • Present, Apply, Review
  • Present:  Methods to present new material to students, or to encourage them to think it out for themselves.  This might involve facts, theories, concepts, stories or any other content.
  • Apply: Methods requiring students to apply the new material just presented to them.  This is the only way to ensure that students conceptualise the new material so that they can understand it, recall it, and use it appropriately in the future.
  • Review:  Methods to encourage students to recall former learning so as to clarify and focus on key points, ensure understanding, and to practice and check recall.
  • Use an appropriate mix of multimedia, ensure that images add something to the text, and consider the benefits of audio versus video. Audio is good as participants can listen to whilst doing other things, video is good if it shows or demonstrates something.
  • Try and ensure active participation as much as possible, for example: get participants to find and collate relevant resources, comment on the resource that others have uploaded, get them to write reflective blog posts and to comment on the blog posts written by peers, get them to participate in a discussion forum on a particular topic, or get them to work collaboratively in a group.
  • Enable participants to monitor their learning progress, by providing them with the ability to tick once activities are completed.
  • Consider personalising the learning experience, by providing audio feedback.
  • Ensure that there are clear signposts for navigation and labelling (i.e. have clear headings, make it easy for the participants to navigate around, etc. ).
  • Ensure that all the materials are accessible (variable fonts, suitable colours).
  • Ensure that all links work.
  • Ensure that all the activities are consistent with the platform’s functionality (i.e., discussion forum, feedback mechanisms).
  • Keep text simple and to a minimum.

Tips for designing MOOCs and useful teaching strategies

May 6th, 2014

As part of the EMMA project we are developing a series of MOOCs which will be delivered through the MOOC aggregator platform. Tomorrow we at Leicester are leading a webinar with partners to share best practice in MOOC design. In advance I have created a document sharing tips and hints for good design of MOOCs and a list of suggestions for teaching strategies which might be used. Here is the version to date comments and suggestions for things to add very much welcome!

Best practice guidelines

  1. Keep the MOOC relatively short; evaluation suggests that longer MOOCs result in high dropout rates and low learner satisfaction. Four to eight weeks is the recommended length of a MOOC.

  2. Clearly articulate the number of anticipated learning hours per week; again keep these to a minimum; around 3 – 4 hours is recommended.

  3. Have a clear and logical learning pathway.

  4. Consider having core and extension activities.

  5. Indicate the amount of learning time associated with each learning activity,

  6. Make clear why participants are expected to use digital technologies (such as forums, wikis, blogs, etc.) and in particular clarify what are the perceived benefits. For example, wikis as a good means of collaborative working, blogs for reflection, or e-portfolios as a means of participants evidencing and collating how they have achieved the intended learning outcomes.

  7. Ensure that learning outcomes are indicated at the beginning of each week, use active verbs that are measurable.

  8. Ensure content is coherent and logically structured, with a clear beginning, middle and end.

  9. Indicate what, if any, tutor support is provided.

  10. Articulate the pedagogical approach used, for example is reflective learning encouraged, or dialogic learning.

  11. During design try and focus on activities rather than content.

  12. Consider carefully what collaborative elements are included and how these are organised.

  13. Try and ensure that each week is organized in the same way so that it is easy for the participants to orientate themselves.

  14. Keep participants motivated and on track by providing a weekly email update, summarizing the key points covered and signposting to the following week’s activities.

  15. Include mini quizzes at the end of each week, to enable participants to assess their learning.

  16. Provide extensive activities, which are both remedial and advanced in nature, to cater for a diversity of participants.  

  17. Consider having a short (5 minutes) video introducing the week’s content and activities, this provides a more personal touch.

  18. Have a number of synchronous hour-long sessions, perhaps one at the beginning of the MOOC to provide an overview and enable participants to outline what they hope to get out of the MOOC, one in the middle providing a space for Q&A and any points for clarification, and one at the end to provide a space to reflect on their experience.

  19. Try and ensure that all the resources are open and CC licenced.

  20. Provide a discussion thread on the forum to enable participants to introduce themselves, their experience of the subject to date and what they hope to get out of the participation in the MOOC.

  21. Consider having a particular structure, for example:

  • Connect, Activate/Demonstrate, Consolidate

    • Connect – an introductory section to orient the participant to the week’s content and activities.

    • Activate/Demonstrate – the main focus of content and activities for the week.

    • Consolidate – the reflective element of the week, where participants reflect on what they have learnt and consider the relevance to their own practice.

  • Present, Apply, Review

    • Present:  Methods to present new material to students, or to encourage them to think it out for themselves.  This might involve facts, theories, concepts, stories or any other content.

    • Apply: Methods requiring students to apply the new material just presented to them.  This is the only way to ensure that students conceptualise the new material so that they can understand it, recall it, and use it appropriately in the future.

    • Review:  Methods to encourage students to recall former learning so as to clarify and focus on key points, ensure understanding, and to practice and check recall.

  1. Use an appropriate mix of multimedia, ensure that images add something to the text, and consider the benefits of audio versus video. Audio is good as participants can listen to whilst doing other things, video is good if it shows or demonstrates something.

  2. Try and ensure active participation as much as possible, for example: get participants to find and collate relevant resources, comment on the resource that others have uploaded, get them to write reflective blog posts and to comment on the blog posts written by peers, get them to participate in a discussion forum on a particular topic, or get them to work collaboratively in a group.

  3. Enable participants to monitor their learning progress, by providing them with the ability to tick once activities are completed.

  4. Consider personalising the learning experience, by providing audio feedback.

  5. Ensure that there are clear signposts for navigation and labelling (i.e. have clear headings, make it easy for the participants to navigate around, etc. ).

  6. Ensure that all the materials accessible (variable fonts, suitable colours).

  7. Ensure that all links work.

  8. Ensure that all the activities are consistent with the platform’s functionality (i.e., discussion forum, feedback mechanisms).

  9. Keep text simple and to a minimum.

Teaching techniques

The following are useful teaching techniques:

  1. Annotation – get participants to annotate a resource and then summarise the key points

  2. Articulate reasoning - participants articulate their reasoning on a particular topic, this can be done as a reflective blog post or as part of a discussion forum thread.

  3. Brainstorming - the tutor invites participants to brainstorm as many ideas as possible about a particular topic, these can be collated in an online tool such as linoit.com.

  4. Collective aggregation – get the participants to collectively aggregate a set of resources around a particular topic.

  5. Flash debate – where a current hot topic of relevance is put up as a discussion thread.

  6. Crossword puzzle - have a series of clues around a set of concepts and get participants to complete a crossword. So for example the clue ‘A type of pedagogical approach’ with 14 letters is ‘constructivism’.

  7. Fish bowl - where participants are organised in two circles, in the inner circle there are about four or five chairs, all the remaining participants are arranged in the outer circle. In an open fish bowl one chair in the inner circle is empty, in a closed fishbowl all are occupied. A moderator introduces a topic and those in the inner circle begin discussing it. In the open fish bowl anyone from the outer circle can then move to occupy the empty chair in the inner circle, when this happens someone must voluntarily leave. In the closed fish bowl those in the inner circle talk for a while and then choose to vacate their seat.  

  8. Flash cards - participants work through a series of flahscards or can create and share their own flash cards. Can be useful for example in language learning in terms of drill and practice for learning vocabulary.

  9. Flash debate – where a current hot topic of relevance is put up as a discussion thread.

  10. For and against debate - where participants are divided into two teams of three, one team argues the case for a particular issue, the other team argues against it, then the wider cohort discuss and finally vote.

  11. Icebreakers - activities which help participants relax and become used to a group context, they are useful at the beginning of a course. Here is a link to some useful examples (http://www.educatorstechnology.com/2013/04/10-techy-icebreakers-for-21st-century.html).

  12. Jigsaw pedagogical pattern where a problem is broken down into four parts, each participant researches a part of the problem, then they get together with others who have researched the same problem, and then they return to their home team to combine knowledge.

  13. Mini quizzes – help participants assess their understanding of the week’s content and activities through a formative mini quiz, providing instant feedback.

  14. Mindmapping – get the participants to create a mindmap of a particular topic and associated ideas, either individually or in groups.

  15. Peer critique – get the participants to peer critique other participants’ writings.

  16. Q&A forum – a space for participants to asked questions, which can be answered by other participants and/or the tutors. Turn the final forum output into a FAQ list.

  17. Reflective blog – get the participants to keep a reflective blog, where they consider what they have learnt and the relevance to their practice.

  18. Reciprocal teaching - this entails the tuor and/or participants taking turns to lead a dialogue. There are four key activities: predicting, questioning, summarising and clarifying.

  19. Pair dialogues - participants work in pairs to develop a shared understanding of a particular set of concepts.

  20. Panel discussion - five or six participants form a panel and discuss a set of issues, this might include questions from the remainder of the cohort who form the audience for the debate.

  21. Posters - participants create a poster on a particular topic, peers provide comments and feedback.

  22. Presentations - participants give a presentation on a particular topic, either individually or in groups.

  23. Rounds - This is a simple technique that encourages participation. The tutor states a question and then goes around inviting everyone to answer briefly. This is not an open discussion. This is an opportunity to individually respond to specific questions, not to comment on each other’s responses or make unrelated remarks.

  24. Scavenger hunt - participants are divided into teams, they are given a list of resources to find (for example they might be asked to find a resource on ‘constructivist learning’, or a resource describing how a wiki can be used to promote collaborative learning or a resource on the implications for learning). The team that collates all the items on the list first wins.

  25. Snowball - enables participants to organise groups of ideas on a concept and assign them to themes. Patterns and relationships in the groups can also be observed. One slip of paper (or ‘post-its’) is used per idea generated or possible solution offered. A meeting is set up of up to 5 people. The slips of paper are viewed and then grouped ‘like with like’. Duplicates can be created if the idea/solution is relevant to more than one group. Patterns and relationships in the groups are observed.

  26. Structured debate - the tutor poses an issue for participants to debate. Each participant then articulates their position. These are posted in the same document. Then to each position, each participant  attaches pro or con arguments. They then critique the arguments by attaching (linking) various comments, two to four participants engage with each other on provocative or divisive issues with an eye to challenging themselves and the audience to examine their assumptions and unconscious beliefs.

  27. Summarising - students work either individually or in teams to summarise the key points associated with a particular text.

  28. Teaching by asking - begin the session by asking participants a set of questions related to the topic being covered.

  29. Think – Pair – Share pedagogical pattern - where participants think about a problem or question, then discuss it with another participant and then discuss collectively with the rest of the group.

  30. Thought experiment - participants are asked to imagine themselves in a particular situation and are asked questions about that situation.

  31. Vicarious learning – where one participant provides an explanation of a particular topic.

Useful links