Review of Course guide example

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Key points

  • Design Consultation 1 recommended the adoption of a generic introductory resource to be called a "Course Guide" for OERu courses.
  • The team at USQ has developed an example Course guide for the Regional Relations in Asia and Pacific course.
  • The course guide is linked under the key resource section of the prototype OERu AST1000 course homepage.



Contents

Components of the example course guide

The course guide includes:

Key elements and features




Notes
  • The OERu learner support link at the bottom of the navigation template will link to a set of generic learner support resources which can be used by all OERu courses.
  • Instructions on creating and using these navigation templates are available in this tutorial

Review instructions



Objectives

The aim of this open review consultation is to:
  • Provide specific feedback and suggestions for improving the AST1000 Course guide draft posted in the wiki.
  • Provide feedback and suggestions on the general structure and elements to be included in the OERU style guidelines for the Course guide resource.




Instructions

  1. Please provide course specific feedback for the AST1000 Course guide on the corresponding talk page using the discussion tab on that page:
  2. Overall feedback relating to the design and improvement of the Course guide for inclusion in the OERu style guide should be provided below on this page.
  3. Feedback is required by the close of your business on 7 June 2012.


What do you think about the overall structure and components of the example course guide?

I agree the structure and pedagogy of the Critical Reasoning course is excellent. To be fair to colleagues at Unisa -- the page you looked at is not the presentation format. It must still be converted into a user-friendly layout which can be integrated into the learning management systems used across the OERu. (The reason we tested Wiki integration with partner LMSs). By way of example, look at this page in the wiki and how it can be delivered in a LMS - Note that all the redundant wiki navigation is removed. The advantage we get from the wiki is a single source with detailed subversion history for collaborative development that can be delivery locally using the OERu partner's LMS. With LMSs we cannot work collaboratively. The wiki also gives us the capability of automatically producing pdfs - -however, uploading pdf links are not editable and reduce reuse potential. The OERu also needs technology which can scale for thousands of learners. LMS technology is resource intensive and wouldn't take too many learners on the same course to crash the server :-( --Wayne Mackintosh 00:40, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
That's a good point about the word limit of microblogs. We have that one covered and have been prototyping solutions with the OCL4Ed courses. We use an RSS aggregation which pulls together feeds from Twitter, identi.ca and abridged forum posts (when learners want to write more than 140 characters.). With technology we can in theory harvest any RSS feed (for example a learners blog post) into a central timeline and then integrate this into any website, as in the case of the Live feed in this Moodle course. The microblog posts provide an element of synchronous communication which can scale for large numbers of learners without increasing local costs for facilitation. It becomes a form of peer-learning support. --Wayne Mackintosh 00:51, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
  • Similar feeling re the cluttered/text dense presentation as noted above (Posted by UOW).
That's a good point -- I'm partly to blame here, the original versions had good pictures and these must still be uploaded to the pages for a more visually attractive page which can break the text. The including of microblog activity templates, in text quizzes etc will also provide visual variety and improve student-student and content-student interactions (without increasing variable cost of delivery). --Wayne Mackintosh 00:54, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
  • Would prefer marking rubrics as neat PDFs linked to the webpage with a common graphic icon. (NOTE – content of the rubrics is great though). (Posted by UOW)
Yes PDFs are available. They can be generated automatically from the wiki. The trouble with compiled pdfs is that they are hard to maintain because they are not editable (for course revisions, reuse by other institutions etc.) --Wayne Mackintosh 00:57, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
  • Like the Youtube welcome video (Posted by UOW)
  • Main thing that struck me re this sample course structure is the text/essay nature of the course. No use of synchronous comms such as skype to allow for online tutorial activities. The interaction between students is continuous text-based feedback on their postings via twitter – I would be concerned that with no scheduled virtual events in real-time – as a learner you’d lose your way, lose your motivation, get bogged down in the minutae. Well perhaps I would - I guess on a personal level, this course would not be one I’d be keen to do. I would prefer a course that had some online synchronous opportunities, as well as asynchronous feedback to individual students/peer feedback. (Posted by UOW)
Individual partners will be free to schedule synchronous comms, which will certainly add value to the learning experience. However, the costs of providing these synchronous sessions will need to be carried by the institutions hosting them. Also, when working globally with learners distributed across 24 time zones, remember that at least 2 sessions must be scheduled for each synchronous event so every has an opportunity to be present. We can think about innovative ways for students to establish synchronous study group session through self-organisation and AVIs may join these session. Good ideas to think about. --Wayne Mackintosh 01:02, 12 June 2012 (UTC)

Are there any elements missing from the course guide which should be included?

Any further comments or suggestions?

That's a good point -- we need to find a solution for learners to identify which "activities" are required for the credential which facilitates the freedom for OERu partners to specify their own assessment requirements --Wayne Mackintosh 08:01, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
Another good point -- how do we cater for graduate objectives with the flexibility for institutional autonomy on these objectives. Open for discussion -- Should the OERu agree generic graduate objectives? --Wayne Mackintosh 08:01, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
Yes! I think the 'flipped classroom' approach is an excellent pedagogical approach for designing OERu courses that can be presented in parallel mode (full tuition students plus OERu free learners.) --Wayne Mackintosh 01:23, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
Yes - -I can see that different subjects will need different approaches to layout. Can you point us to a link which shows this layout approach. Would be good to have an example so we can think about implementable solutions --Wayne Mackintosh 01:06, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
Hi Niki, Excellent point and I agree that this is a very significant issue for OERu. Given the complexities and importance of this component of credentialisation, I recommend that we set up a dedicated activity in the logic model to plan this in more detail (rather than inclusion in a pedagogical style guide). For this purpose I've initiated a brainstorm activity to identify the summative assessment issues under the open credentialing initiative of the logic model. These relate to University regulations and needs detailed and robust attention. Your suggestion for the protoypes is a good one. Thanks. --Wayne Mackintosh 03:10, 12 June 2012 (UTC)

Rough consensus poll



Proposed consensus recommendation

Based on the review feedback, the OERTen will implement a generic course guide for OERu courses using the structural components illustrated in the AST1000 course guide. These requirements will be documented in the OERu style guide with the additional inclusion of a "Getting started" resource plus the incorporation of the following guidelines:

  • Promoting the visual appeal of pages through the inclusion of graphics, images and pedagogical templates
  • Promoting options for more substantive feedback from OERu learners than the 140 character limit of microblog posts
  • To provide solutions for producing pdf outputs of selected resources better suited to print while ensuring editable files formats, minimizing upstream maintenance and incorporating solutions for version control.
  • To encourage inclusion of learner-content interactions (eg quizes with feedback) and scalable solutions for peer-to-peer interactions
  • To accommodate the listing and requirements for OERu partners providing assessment services for OERu courses.
  • To promote reuse of the course across the OERu network.
  • To consider learners who use the resources but may not wish to apply for assessment services.

Note: As the style guide recommendations will be developed transparently in the wiki there will be opportunities for further refinement and improvement.


Consensus poll vote



Cast your vote below

Note: You must be logged into WikiEducator to vote.

  1. I recommend the inclusion of the proposed consensus recommendation above for inclusion in the OERu style guide
    • Yes
    • No
    • Other (requires further reasons below as the date for feedback is closed.)


Additional feedback

Will need to be a substantive issue as the date for open feedback is closed.

Decision

Course guide recommendations specified in the proposed consensus recommendation above to be adopted as style guidelines for OERu course guides, but with the additional inclusion of a course composition subsection which could use a graphic organiser or summary text to provide an overview of the course structure.

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