Aboluay's (Anas) Musings

Capturing Thoughts Before They Perish

Aboluay's (Anas) Musings - Capturing Thoughts Before They Perish

Rate your online learning-ability

I stumbled on this website that rates ones readiness to be a successful oline learner. I scored 33 out of 39 which means:

You are a strong candidate for success in an online course!

It adds:

  • meets the necessary technical requirements and is comfortable with the equipment
  • has the time and resources to dedicate to online course work
  • is comfortable with the written word and use of e-mail as a communication form
  • is self-disciplined, self-guided and committed
  • has the ability to prioritize responsibilities and work independently
  • will ask for assistance when needed to build academic and social support systems
  • has much to benefit from this delivery method vs. residence programs (Examples: busy lifestyle, geographic
  • isolation from campus, parenting requirements or restrictions, physical disability, corporate support to learn at work )

Source: https://www.miracosta.edu/instruction/distanceeducation/quiz.aspx

MOOC: Online Writing Course

I have just started another MOOC course on Coursera about writing. I was amazed to discover they have outlined 5 types of online offering. I am wondering why a writing course talk about online teaching? But I found its information worth capturing:

Type 1: Traditional Undergraduate Level Online Courses: have a great deal of instructor to student interaction,  follow the course content of the face-to-face counterpart, not self-paced, follow along with the entire class within a designated time period, do activities with other members of the class, also limited in size.

Type 2: Traditional Graduate Level Online Courses: the student is much more self-directed, not self-paced, but there is more interaction among the students with the instructor in a facilitation role.

Type 3: Mass Open Online Courses (MOOC): The interaction with the instructor is limited, the instructor mainly participates through designing the course and offering its content. The instructor will also participate in some of the discussion activities and is usually assisted by peer tutors or teaching assistants. Much of the course is conducted with technology providing the evaluation through machine graded tests and assignments as well as the use of peer graded work. These courses may or may not be self-paced based on the content and the design and usually have hundreds or thousands of students from all over the world.

Type 4: Hybrid (sometimes called Blended) Distance Education Courses: These courses usually occur in the traditional college setting and are partially online courses.

Type 5: Flipped Classes: take place in face-to-face classrooms in many colleges and universities. They implement online content and activities as a major component of the course delivery. Instructors determine what content for the course can best be done by students on their own (watching video lectures, read, do tutorials, etc.) and what parts of the course the students usually need help with (writing essays, solving problems, creating projects, etc.). Students complete the work on their own online before coming to class to work with the instructor on the components that are best done with instructor assistance.

Courses with Proctored Testing: Many fully online courses require the students to go to a specific place to do testing. Usually, the site for testing is the college campus or an alternative sited agreed to by the instructor and the individual student. (This class has no proctored testing.) Student integrity is very important in distance education programs because the college has to be sure that their courses meet requirements of governmental agencies.” 

(Ross, Barkley & Blake n.d.)

Although I like this classification and it makes sense, i still find their definition of the MOOC type to be wrong, or at least, incomplete.

Ross, L. & Barkley, T., Blake, T. (n.d.) : Crafting an Effective Writer: Tools of the Trade by Lorrie Ross, Lawrence (Larry) Barkley, Ted Blake. Coursera Course. Week 1. Retrieved from https://class.coursera.org/basicwriting-001/class/index

7 Principles for effective online teaching

I have been away for a while, ainy because I am busy with the impemmentation of knowledge worker technologies, and partially because I am bloggine on y personal blog. For now, I want to capture Chickering and Gamson (1987)  seven principles of effective pedagogical practices for online teaching before they get lost. They are written in 1987, but I find them still applicable today:

  1. Encourage contacts between students and faculty in and out of classes.
  2. Learning is enhanced when it is more like a team effort than a solo race.
  3. Active learning is encouraged in classes that use structured exercises, challenging discussions, team projects, and peer critiques.
  4. Students need appropriate and timely feedback on their performance to benefit from courses.
  5. Learning to use one’s time well is critical for students and professionals alike.
  6. Communicate higher expectations.
  7. Provide a diverse delivery system.

It’s Here: Next Generation of Online Learning

Tomorrow is here now: Free courses with no instructors, no credits, no charge and from Carnegie Mellon University! The future of teacherless courses is emerging… not there yet, but I see the light at the end of a loooong and winding tunnel!

From their site:

Using intelligent tutoring systems, virtual laboratories, simulations, and frequent opportunities for assessment and feedback, the Open Learning Initiative (OLI) builds courses that are intended to enact instruction – or, more precisely, to enact the kind of dynamic, flexible, and responsive instruction that fosters learning.

The URL is: http://oli.web.cmu.edu/openlearning/forstudents

My Virtual World

I have been spending the last few days interacting with new virtual friends over the concept of online teaching and learning. This morning, I felt I need to live the real life. I needed a break. I needed to touch again with reality. So, I went to FaceBook and redecorated my CafeWorld and redesigned my mansion on FarmVille… Where is my reality? This is like an onion… you peel one layer to find more layers… and as I understand, most of the nutritions of the onion is in the cover, which we throw away…

I know this should make me think about my life… but what is wrong with doing what I enjoy even if the society say otherwise… I am reacting with real people except I do not experience their physicality… how different is this from talking with a real person? … more realities to be discovered from the virtual world…