Art Appreciation and Techniques/Course guide/Getting started

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Ways to engage with this course

Ways to study

In contrast to typical first-year university level courses, you are invited to engage with this course in any way you wish. Here are a few possiblities:

Own interest and enjoyment
Read all or any part of it at your own pace, in whatever order you want, for your own enjoyment and learning.

  • Challenge yourself with any or all of the activities and assignments.
  • Join with others in a small class either locally or online to work together and share your work and explorations with others. Maybe you can find an art teacher, local artist, someone who works at an art gallery, or another community volunteer to work with you to develop your study group.

For possible credit

  • Study the course more formally, setting up a study schedule that fits your lifestyle and circumstances, and work through the activities and assignments.
  • You may do the written activities using a notebook or word processor, or use a blog or wiki if you would like to develop your work online. Other tools such as e-Portfolios may be available to you, depending on your circumstance. The important thing at this point is to do your course work in such a way that if you wish to seek credit, you are able to show the work, and to demonstrate that the work is your own and not copied from, or written by, someone else.
  • Approach an OERu partner college or university that may be willing to consider your work for credit. They may require additional work such as an exam, along with submission of your assignment work. They may also contact you to verify your identity and ensure that the work you submitted is your own.

Help improve the course
This course is only a beginning. It has already gone through several revisions since it its original release, and the course designers would like to see it continue to improve. For example, we would like to see:

  • More examples of art from different cultures around the world.
  • Ideas for revisions or additional content.
  • Adaptations or translations for different contexts.
  • New ideas for learning activities and assessments.

You can make comments or suggestions under the "Discussion" tabs on each of the course pages. As this is an open course, if you sign up as a WikiEducator member you may also make changes to the course. Please note that, as in Wikipedia, changes are monitored and will be reviewed for their appropriateness.

Your feedback is welcome. There is a feedback questionnaire at the end of the course that you are invited to complete.

Make your own course
All the materials in this course are licensed under Creative Commons to remix and reuse in any way that you wish. This means that you can take some or all of these course components and and reuse or adapt them to your own context and needs. If you do so, however, you must adhere to the Attribution and Share-Alike requirements of the Creative Commons licences under which this content has been developed and assembled.

To the course faculty/leader/volunteer

Educators are invited to adopt or adapt this course for their own use in the formal classroom, blended or online setting, or as a volunteer in a community setting, among other possibilities. A group of students may work through the course as a cohort and collaborate on activities and assignments. We leave the structure of these forms of engagement up to the skills and experience of the leader and therefore have given no instructions on how these activities may be implemented for individuals or groups. The learning activities are ungraded, and may be used for practice and/or for helpful student feedback, but were not designed to be used for formal grading.

Study Group Discussion

Learners may need assistance with tools for conducting their activities and assignments, ranging from basic notepads to blogs, wikis and e-Portfolios. A key consideration is to keep the digital skill levels and technology access of the learners in the forefront. 

If you are with an institution considering giving credit for this course, the assignments can be used for formal grading. The assignments have been weighted to assist the student. There is no grading guide as faculty undertaking the evaluation will be able to apply their own judgment in this area. It will be up to the institution to verify the identity of the student and the originality of the submitted work. Options for additional verification may include providing your own exam or other assessments in addition to the assignments given in the course, and/or asking students to submit evidence of having completed the course work (drafts, notes, etc.).

Any suggestions for improvements to this course are welcome. Also, you may wish to adapt or translate this course for other purposes. Please contact a member of the course development team with your suggestions or ideas.

Microblogging (e.g. Twitter) may also be used for communicating with other students. Here is a brief lesson on how to use this tool.

Recording, publishing and sharing your coursework

As you work through the course, you will need space to make notes for your thoughts, reflections and review. Also, you will need to write down your responses to learning activities and assignments, both for your own use and, if desired, for collaborating with others or submitting your work for formal assessment.

There are many ways to achieve this, ranging from using word processing software, notebooks, sketch pads, presentation software, diaries, portfolios, or web logs (blogs) for example. You may also wish to publish your work openly for others to see and comment on. Web logs (blogs) are particularly useful for this purpose. You may wish to look at this resource on how to use a blog.

Communicating with others

If you are studying this course along with a larger group, or in more formal class setting, you may have opportunities to share ideas and collaborate with others. There are a number of tools that you can use for this purpose. If you wish to collaborate with others in developing projects or other content, tools such as Google Docs or wikis are good for this purpose.

Microblogging (e.g. Twitter) may also be used for communicating with other students. Here is a brief lesson on how to use this tool.