Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Learning in Open Online Courses

Learning is becoming more complex, or so, it seems. Depending on how one looks at learning, it could be done in a very formal structured way ("traditional") vs a somewhat informal unstructured way ("new").

I think some students in higher education institutions are going through some very challenging times. On the one hand, they are so used to learning the JIT way which is any which way that works at a particular moment in time. It could be through any ICT device or any print media; but more likely the former, where one can quickly look up for information. Typically, information would best come from Twitter or RSS feeds or FB posts, in fact, more so than from structured or well-designed web sites or portals.

The minds of individuals, especially those of the young, work differently than those who are more matured. Perhaps they have been wired differently. Or, perhaps the way their minds function is a result of their environment, which can be described as chaotic. Life isn't as simple or straightforward like it was in the 50s, 60s, 70s or 80s.

Somehow, with the birth of play stations and similar devices in the 90s, the young children of that time had a lot of control within their little hands. They quickly learnt how to strategise when playing the games or when they role played in the many simulation games that were created for PCs. Perhaps, their brains became wired for more complex situations and those that called for quick decisions based on multiple strategies or analyses of multiple situations. So, imagine after all that, having to sit still in a formal classroom, listening to lecture after lecture and reading what were prescribed became somewhat "unrealistic."

How about if students today were given a range of alternatives in which to "pull" from for their learning? Of course, this gives rise to a different sort of way to assess their learning.

Roughly, about 30 percent of those taking a higher education course are taking them online. Another set of statistics, also indicate that some 30 percent of Internet users have smart phones. I wonder if these 30 percent are also those who are learning through a self-organised manner? What do you think?

George Siemens's slides on the latter are below:

Monday, 12 September 2011

MOOC on mobile learning at OUM

Mobile learning at OUM started with the formation of an research team on m-learning in August 2008. Its first task was to determine how ready OUM learners would be for mobile learning. We surveyed almost 3,000 learners throughout Malaysia and found that more than 80 percent of the learners said they would be ready for learning through their mobile phones. We first experimented with podcasts and moved on to using sms to support the blended mode of learning at OUM and found that the latter worked extremely well.

For more information on the m-learning project at OUM, three papers have been uploaded at:
http://www.scribd.com/collections/3238724/MOOC-on-mobile-learning-at-OUM for your reading.

More than 21,000 learners have benefited from m-learning at OUM and the SMS for selected courses continue to be sent for free (burned by the university) to the targeted group of learners.

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Insect - simply amazing

Teachers can use this as an LO for subjects such as biology, zoology, ecology, geography, etc.

MOOC as explained by George Siemens

Watch the interview of George Siemens by Howard Rheingold One of the originators of MOOCs for a more detailed and interesting description of how the idea for MOOCs came about in 2008, what MOOCs are, how they operate and, more importantly, how MOOCs may benefit users or participants of courses.

You may enjoy the interview below:

Friday, 24 June 2011

MOOCs - An overview

Want to know more about MOOCs? Watch the two videos below. The first introduces you to MOOC. The second is what makes MOOCs successful. I registered myself for the eduMOOC2011. The topics are great and the panelists are those who you want to listen to. It has at this point in time, already has an enrollment of more than 1,800 participants from 50 countries in Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and the Americas. And, the course is free.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

MOOCs - massive open online courses

There's always something new to look forward to. MOOCs or Massive Open Online Courses are the next thing to watch out for. You can be part of it, either actively or passively, as a participant in an online course that is attended by hundreds or thousands from more than a dozen countries over a period of time. These are typically hosted by an institution and participation is invited by various online modes or communication.

For example, next Monday, we have the University of Illinois at Springfield making availabile a new not-for-credit MOOC devoted to examining the state of online education and where e-learning is heading. If you're keen to join, you may do so by registering for the eduMOOC2011 course at: http://sites.google.com/site/edumooc/

Coming up next is a MOOC organised by George Siemens from Athabasca University in Canada together with Stephen Downes and Dave Cormier. Siemens' is known for his ideas on connectivist learning and has become famous because of it. The online course will run for 36 weeks (September 12, 2011 - May 2012). The team has assembled educationists from around the world to share their work and experience related to e-learning, distance education, mobile learning, personal learning environments, authentic learning, open scholoarship, etc. etc.

For more information, visit: http://change.mooc.ca/. To register, click at: http://change.mooc.ca/cgi-bin/login.cgi?refer=http://change.mooc.ca/cgi-bin/admin.cgi&action=Register.

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Sending in a CV? Watch this first

It's been a while since I last blogged. Not that there was nothing of interest to blog about. It was just that it was quicker to link the interesting resources found to my facebook. Anyway, I found something today that I thought must be posted here. It's impressive. CVs like we know it (paper-based) from years ago, have evolved. See the slides below to know what I mean. Personally, I would not mind receiving a CV in either of those media or approaches mentioned. Especially, if it's for a job that requires creativity, flexibility and innovativeness. Watch:

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

21st century education

Much has been said about the need to transform the way we teach and how students learn in school and institutions of higher learning. Yet, we are a bit slow in changing. A quick overview of the vision, need, rationale, knowledge, skills, assessment and the how have been made widely available on the Internet and these (click link below) are just several.


Friday, 21 January 2011

Use of Bono's Six Thinking Hats

Very clever I thought. Another way of approaching the design of instruction. To all instructional designers out there...what do you think?

Try applying the SIX thinking hats and see if your ID tasks are easier to tackle. Of course, I don't think the six thinking hats are all there is to ID. Time proven principles should still come into play.

For more details, read: