Development meeting 28 January 2009

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  1. Orientation and introductions - 1
  2. What is flexible learning and why we need it - 1
  3. Methods of Flexible Learning - distance, correspondence, online, part time, block, blended, open, networked, APL, RPL, formal and informal learning - 3
  4. Flexible learning in educational organisations - interview a practising colleague - 2
  5. Considerations for flexible learning - Sustainability, access and equity, cultural diversity - 3
  6. Describe your course - (as a schedule) and identify opportunities and describe your methods for flexibility (profile existing and potential participants, how to engage people) - 3
  7. Develop a presentation - making sure to address the topics covered in this course and how you relate them to your vision for a course - 2
  8. Present at the course mini conference 1
Leighblackall (talk)21:49, 27 January 2009

Leigh I am wondering should we use the pre-course survey to find out levels of DIL and self-efficacy with elearning or should we have a short one to ascertain experience with FL?--bron 00:05, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Bronwynh (talk)00:05, 29 January 2009

I have set up a delicious tag flexiblelearning09 and started adding things. this article looks interesting as it gives an overview of how an organisation has progressed with FL and also outlines current trends for FL and future directions. for some reason I could not tag it but will try later. http://ausweb.scu.edu.au/aw08/papers/refereed/reid/paper.html

Online strategy revisited: retrospect and prospect of the use of the web for teaching in universities

Ian C. Reid [HREF1],Associate Director, Flexible Learning Centre, University of South Australia [HREF2],ian.reid@unisa.edu.au Abstract

For AUSWEB99, I wrote a paper called Online strategy in Higher Education [HREF3] which was a synthesis of the strategic thinking in the literature about how the Web should be used in universities for teaching purposes. Since that time we have seen the explosion of the use of the web for teaching in higher education. We have seen LMSs come and go, both as individual products, and as the sole means by which universities can address strategic dilemmas in providing online teaching tools. Open source software has emerged as a competitor to commercial products and Web 2.0 tools are impacting on online teaching practices. In addition, universities are focusing on a range of new pedagogical strategies in order to improve the quality of their programs. This paper revisits the earlier discussion, reflects on its salience some nine years later, and proposes future directions.

Bronwynh (talk)00:17, 29 January 2009

Not a fan Bron. It is in a format that doesn't engage me (though I realise there are still some people who like to read 2000 words) and it speaks of specifics that I reckon most of the people who will participate in our course (beginners) won't relate to. It also uses inflatory words, and jargon.

"Since that time we have seen the explosion of the use of the web for teaching in higher education."

Have we? Really!

"The world (and the web) in 2008 is a different place to what it was when the earlier AUSWEB paper was written some nine years ago. Universities’ online strategies must respond to a new environment."

etc. I think it would be a good reading for some, and that we should include it in an extra list.. but I don't think it is worthy of spotlighting.

Leighblackall (talk)00:25, 2 February 2009

I am not convinced you have read it at all! I think it has very pertinent concerns highlighted for people. Not everyone is in the same space as us. I would like to leave it on the delicious feed and let people make their own choice whether to read it or not. wasn't planning to make any fanfare about it.

Bronwynh (talk)20:45, 8 February 2009

Oh OK.. sorry. I thought you were planning to use it in the actual course. Absolutely keep it on the Delicious tag. On the tag, I think we just use FlexibleLearning as a tag. That way our readings mix with others which more often than not results in happy findings..

Leighblackall (talk)01:46, 12 February 2009
 
 
 
Edited by author.
Last edit: 20:39, 8 February 2009

I like the following article and think it could replace the Collis article. It is more current and covers the what and why and how of flexible learning in an australian context which is relevant to us. see what you think. I like it because it combines the student and teacher perspectives as well as culture, pedagogy and briefly mentions technology. It also challenges the "one size fits all" mentality. :)

Nagy, J. & McDonald, J. (2007). New models for learning flexibility: negotiated choices for both academics and students. Providing choices for learners and learning. Proceedings Ascilite Singapore 2007. http://www.ascilite.org.au/conferences/singapore07/procs/nagy.pdf

Abstract New models for learning flexibility: Negotiated choices for bothacademics and students ‘Flexible learning’ represents a need associated with ‘lifelong learning’ and the equipping of graduates to actively engage in a ‘knowledge society’. While the precise meaning of each of these terms is not easy to discern, notions of flexible learning have progressed an evolutionary path that concentrates on students as though they are the only stakeholder group in the higher education environment that would benefit from choice. Academic discourse also presumes that all cultural groups making up the increasingly diverse student population aspire to engage in student-centred learning as a precursor to involvement in a knowledge economy. In this environment academics have been encouraged to embrace online teaching and promote a more student-centred learning approach when the natural inclination and talent of many academics may make this style of pedagogy so challenging that learning outcomes are compromised. We question this ‘one size fits all’ mentality and suggest a model that empowers both the students and academics by allowing them the ability to choose the approach that suits their educational philosophy and preferred learning/teaching approach. The model represents an innovation in flexibility that recognises initial embedded learning foundation abilities and reaches both teachers and learners by utilising their own frames of reference.

Bronwynh (talk)01:39, 29 January 2009

Hu? I needed a login to see this PDF.. are you toying with me?

Leighblackall (talk)00:26, 2 February 2009

oops! Try now I have removed the proxy route. http://www.ascilite.org.au/conferences/singapore07/procs/nagy.pdf

Bronwynh (talk)20:40, 8 February 2009

Thanks, that works now. I gave it a scan but with everyting we need to do to the course schedule, I haven't read it. But it does make me think, why don't you try and get the authors to talk to their work through a web conference. We should probably try and organise that more often as general EDC work, and we can suggest to the Flexible Learning course participants to attend as an "extra" or core activity...

Leighblackall (talk)01:49, 12 February 2009
 
 
 

Yes, I think that would be a good idea to open with a survey asap. Let's use Survey Monkey. It wants to be brief (10-20 minutes) and we want to grasp how people feel about their computing abilities, and what they think or know already about flexible learning before they do the course right? I think we could pretty much gather that with 3 questions:

1. On a scale of 1-5 (5 being highest) how would you rate your abilities to use a computer and the Internet?
2. Tick the boxes for words you know the meaning of:
  • Flexible learning
  • Distance learning
  • Networked learning
  • Recognition of prior learning
  • Blog
  • Wiki
  • RSS
3. Please give us a definition of flexible learning based on what you know already
Leighblackall (talk)00:15, 2 February 2009

yes I agree simplify and use survey monkey. I still think we need to find out about their confidence as well. I will add some ideas later on. Instead of ticking boxes if they know meanings I would rather have an open-ended Q to see what they say. Get back to you on this soon.

Bronwynh (talk)20:42, 8 February 2009