An important pedagogical exemplar for OERu

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This is a significant prototype for the OERu network because it will demonstrate:

  • The "free-range learning pedagogy" where learners can customise their learning experience according to personal interests while meeting the requirements for formal accreditation
  • A cost-effective course design approach which leverages existing open access and OER materials on the web.

Thinking out loud:

  • How does USQ propose to manage the student identity authentication -- i.e. What strategies / methods does USQ suggest for ensuring that the student who submits their assessment artifacts were in fact the students who did the work?
  • I like the incorporation of the reflective journal into the summative assessment. Will the journal reflections be personal (private) or public (published openly. Thinking about opportunities for peer-2-peer learning support where OERu learners can comment on journal reflections published openly on the wen. I think there are important learning experiences because writing for the general public, is different from writing a personal piece. If the course includes public journal reflections - -what would be the average split between public versus private postings in terms of the assessment weightings?
  • The regional relations database is a great feature for this course where learners can submit the OERs they find with annotated reflections. In your professional opinion -- how many students can be accommodated in a cohort before the database information becomes overwhelming. For example, having 1000 learners making submissions into the database could result in information overload. Thinking about the future - -we might be able to implement technology features to filter and/or make the database function for large student cohorts. I'm interested in hearing your thoughts / recommendations. Shouldn't be an issue for the prototype offering because we will restrict registrations -- but thinking about the future.
  • As in the case of the other prototypes -- using discussion forums will not scale well in courses with more than 50- 100 students. I have a few ideas we trialed with the #OCL4Ed course where microblog posts from various sources are aggregated with a precis summary of forum posts with live links back to the originating post. Part of the problem is that we need to disable email notifications on forum posts. Yes, email notifications are an optional setting in Moodle -- but many learners will not know how to do this and can be demotivated and give up after they receive their first 400 posts in their inbox. It can be overwhelming and in the past we've received complaints from learners participating in large courses. I've been thinking about automating an HTML newsletter which contains the aggregated feed so learners would not receive more than one course email per day / or week depending on how we set this up.
  • What kinds of activities / support roles do you envisage AVI's to be doing? This will be useful in designing the AVI system and corresponding technologies.

I've been fortunate in taking a peek at an earlier version of the course -- I was very impressed with the design and its implementation. BTW -- you forgot to mention the video signposts which are an excellent feature of the course ;-)

Mackiwg (talk)12:20, 15 March 2012