Wednesday, June 29, 2011

eduMOOC in a Virtual World? #eduMOOC

As a devoted Second Life junkie, I have been envisioning what it would like if this MOOC had been staged in Second Life. Perhaps having visual references to peg to would help alleviate some of the over-stimulation of multiple threads, posts, resources, links, videos, etc.

I worked up a little 2D map of some of the major touchpoints I've encountered so far at (in?) the eduMOOC, and would love to hear any critiques/suggestions/reactions to this idea. If there is enough interest, I may convert some of my rented virtual real estate in Second Life into a mock-up of what this MOOC might look like if it were housed in SL.

Personally, the idea of one's avatar strolling across the quad from the learning carrels to the mLearning cafe, and greeting/speaking with other avatars along the way, sounds fun! Or am I just being silly?

Voices from Cyberspace #eduMOOC

I am so excited to see that two fellow MOOC participants, Vanessa Vaile and Paul Bettinson, posted comments to my blog. I feel so...validated!

Today was "get organized" day. I joined the social bookmarking site Diigo (thank you, Jason Rhodes) and bookmarked a bunch of webpages for journals, orgs, open schools, and public domain stuff. Read (and joined more) wikis and tweets.

I also began considering the question of my personal learning objectives for this MOOC, per my last post, and came up with the following.

  • I will bookmark links and resources with Diigo, and later organize these into lists and read them to see how I can utilize them on my path to facilitating adult education.

  • What I hope to get from this MOOC is: resources, contacts, and the building blocks to construct my PLN.

Concerning the question of where I think I am on the continuum of online learning: I would like to begin by constructing a definition of online learning that is meaningful to me. What I've come up with so far is:

Online learning consists of a structure set up by an instructor/facilitator (LMS, virtual microworld, blogs, wikis, RSS feeds, podcasts, Prezi, Moodle, etc.) informed by his/her PLN, plus students who utilize online tools and share their PLNs amongst themselves and with their instructor, to achieve learning objectives that promote transformative learning and self-directed learning. I will continue to refine this definition during the course of the MOOC.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

An Embarrassment of Resources

Feeling a bit overwhelmed and rather excited about this MOOC. Today I scanned digests of emails and garnered quite a few links to check out, including:

Links to tools:
Social bookmarking
Constructing learning objectives
Aligning objectives with learning strategies and assessment
Building rubrics
Quality Matters

Links to blogs:
Michelle Pacansky-Brock's blog on building learning communities with social media
Rebecca Hogue's blog entries re MOOC learning objectives
Brian Christensen's blog on digital teaching and learning

Emails to people with interests similar to mine (community education, humanities teaching online, self-directed learning):
Vanessa Vaile - interested in applications for online community learning and self-paced study groups -
Paul Bettinson - interested in e-learning in interactive art courses -

AND yet another book to add to my reading pile: Jane McGonigal's Reality Is Broken, recommended by Norman Constantine (

I also need to address the question of my personal learning objectives for this MOOC. Guiding statements from fellow participants include: "...learners can determine what to do with the given links and resources (objectives/activities), what they want to get out of the unit/learning experience (outcomes), and how to measure their own success (assessments)" - Clark Shah-Nelson and "...evaluate where I think I am on the continuum of the huge topic of online learning" (James Davis).

Um, I think that's enough for today....

Monday, June 27, 2011

Gearing Up for the eduMOOC

The Center for Online Learning Research and Service at the University of Illinois Springfield has created a Massive Online Open Class (MOOC), running June 27 - August 20, 2011. It is titled "Online Learning Today...and Tomorrow." Weekly panel discussions, wikis, blogs, and a bewildering array of technology new to me will be employed in this open, collaborative learning experience. I believe over 2300 people have signed up so far.

Today I added my virtual pin to the world map showing locations of participants, posted an intro, and shared my contact info on the participant networking site. I've also compiled links for the home page, the wiki study group page, and the resources page. I still need to figure out how to plug into an RSS feed for the MOOC, visit the link to prep for Thursday's first live panel discussion, learn how to use Twitter, check out the resources page, and read the intros of others. Whew.

By the way, a big THANK YOU to EDAE 692 classmate Sarah Veltkamp for alerting me to this MOOC!