We are running a Course Business Models workshop tomorrow at the OU to share with staff from across the university the work we have done to date in terms of representing courses. The Course Business Models (CBM) and the Learning Design work complement each other in the sense that the LD work provides the broader perspective and theoretical basis for the work and the CBM work a specific local implementation.
One of the things I will argue tomorrow will be about the benefits of adopting a Learning Design approach. In particular I will argue that it offers a design-based approach to the creation and delivery of courses, along with a set of resources, tools and activities to support this. It enables practitioners (and potentially learners) to shift from learning and teaching practices that are essentially ‘belief’ based (i.e. this is what I have always done, this is my experience of learning and teaching) and implicit to ones based on design principles derived from good pedagogy and mechanisms that enable the design to be made more explicit. Adopting a design-based approach promotes a reflective and scholarly approach and facilitates the sharing and discussion of learning and teaching ideas and designs.
In our Design-Practice project (with Cyprus and Greece) we are identifying what innovations from our Learning Design work we can transfer to be applied in their local contexts. This has enabled us to take stock of the range of tools, resources and activities we have produced and put them into a more logical and meaningful framework. Rebecca Galley, Paul Mundin and I had a great brainstorm about this earlier this week and I think we have come up with a nice way of capturing and representing what we have developed. The LD-wheel shown provides a higher level picture; i.e. that our Learning Design methodology is composed of three parts: theoretical perspectives, collaboration and visualisation. For each of these we have developed a set of tools, resources and activities. So for example the CBM Excel templates we have produced for the views are examples of visualisation resources. CompendiumLD is an example of a visualisation tool and Cloudworks an example of a collaboration tool.
At the end of this blog post the full Learning Design Taxonomy underneath this that we have developed is presented.
It is possible to take a number of guided pathways through the LD-wheel:
- CBM awareness events (such as the workshop we are running tomorrow) – where the focus is on looking at and discussing the five CBM views.
- An LD-lite workshop (for example ‘Using technology to support learning and teaching’) – where a selection of tools, resources and activities are used but there is no explicit mention of Learning Design. We are planning to run something like this with our Design-Practice colleagues.
- Design challenges – using a range of the tools, resources and activities to support teams as they work through creating a course in a day. We have run a number of these both within the OU and externally with our partners on the JISC OULDI project.
- A masters level unit – such as the one I authored for the H800 course.
- A free format – where the user choose what they want to use and in what order.
I’m looking forward to the workshop tomorrow and getting feedback on aspects of this work and to seeing in the coming months how this work might be rolled out across the university.