Tuesday, January 06, 2015

MOOCs and Conversations

As I have shared, I joined a massive open online class (MOOC) on blended learning. This is not my first MOOC, but as the learning experience has gotten started I am reminded of one of the primary values of a MOOC -- the conversations and discussions that engage a wide variety of learners, including many outside my normal realm.

In a MOOC, one may truly participate as much or as little as they like, which makes the learning very personalized. I particularly enjoy the discussions, where I learn a great deal from other excellent minds. The initial discussion prompt asked us to share some convictions we hold about education coming into the class. Participants from around the world have shared responses. Convictions that were shared include:
  • The goal of education is to do something with what is learned.
  • Education will continue to change but organizational structures will continue to lag behind.
  • Blended learning has the potential to allow any student anywhere in the world participate in high quality learning.
  • The shift from teacher-centered to individual student-centered lessons is important.
  • Good teaching is good teaching, no matter what the environment.
  • No new program/idea will be successful unless teachers and students feel supported.
  • Teachers must be passionate about their calling to be effective.
  • Good design comes first and technology comes second.
This is merely a sample of the discussion points being debated within the first forum -- and we are only on the second day of the MOOC! Plenty of additional discussion remains.

It is not too late to join the Adventures in Blended Learning MOOC and gain access to so many ideas and resources. Remember -- you may participate as much or as little as you want. Make the activities work for you! Click here for information on how to join the MOOC.

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