The new year has begun

Well my weekly post is overdue… but here I am again starting off the New Year with a short post. No excuses, but I have been working very hard on developing the Authentic eDesign course as students will have access to it from tomorrow.

I’m happy with how the Moodle LMS and the companion website are progressing. One of my concerns is providing sufficient information so participants are encouraged a consider a wide range of perspectives and yet not wanting to include too much content. My solution was to included lots of links so that participants can choose to explore more detailed information from a variety of perspectives if they want to, or have the time to.

Another area that I have been working on is how to design the course to support participants in developing a community of inquiry.

 “An educational community of inquiry is a group of individuals
who collaboratively engage in purposeful critical discourse and reflection
to construct personal meaning and confirm mutual understanding”
(Garrison, Anderson & Archer, 2000).

One strategy I have implemented is to have participants post the URL for their blogs to a Google Doc so all participants can easily access each others Blogs. I’ve included information about communities of inquiry and how commenting on each others blogs can help them to confirm mutual understanding or discuss differing viewpoints.

A Q&A forum and a Skype chat group have been setup to facilitate different types of conversations and I will encourage participants to respond to each others questions rather than rely solely on me, the facilitator, for answers. Hrastinski (2008), suggests synchronous (e.g., discussion forums) and asynchronous (e.g., chat) modes of communication complement each other as they each facilitate different forms of communication.  Research indicates conversations in discussion forums tend to focus on content whereas Skype chats tend to focus more on planning and social components as well as content.

Well back to work…chat again soon 🙂

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