Active Learning Strategies for Online Learning: September 10 - 30, 2007

Introductions

Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Number of replies: 70
Please take a few minutes to tell us where you are from and what your interest is in Active Learning.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Deirdre Bonnycastle

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -

I am Deirdre Bonnycastle and I currently work as a faculty developer for the College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan. Before that I worked as an online instructional developer for both the university and our technical institute (over 50 courses). I have been an active teacher for 35 years; initially because I was very shy and hated being the centre of attention and later because my students learned better when they were active participants in their learning.

My interest in Active Learning as a theory has been reinforced by my experience in the College of Medicine where students are expected to memorize vast amounts of information, but sometimes have very little experience with deeper learning. Medical Education is undergoing a radical transformation because of increasing medical complexity, expectations of interprofessional teamwork and resource shortages.

I've attached an image of the University Bridge with an image of the Saskatoon skyline for people who are interested.

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In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Deirdre Bonnycastle

by Emma Duke-Williams -
I'm Emma Duke-Williams from Portsmouth, in the UK. I've been a teacher, and am now a lecturer in the School of computing - but not for nearly as long as Deidre! My main interest now is Computing to support teaching & learning; whether that's how students can personally manage their learning, or teaching modules on Educational Software design.

I'm also not really sure what "active learning" is, though I'm sure I'm going to learn.
However, Deirdre's comment: "where students are expected to memorize vast amounts of information, but sometimes have very little experience with deeper learning. Medical Education is undergoing a radical transformation because of increasing medical complexity, expectations of interprofessional teamwork and resource shortages." rings true!

Many of the students that I teach want to learn "facts"; while for some aspects of computing that's quite useful (e.g. coding), for others it's not; you have to understand how people are going to use your programs once you've written them! In the same way that Deidre mentions "interprofessional" - so we have the same in the IT industry; and resource shortages, while clearly in the West it's nothing to those in the majority world (I spent 2.5 years teaching in Papua New Guinea), resources, especially in public sector aren't exactly plentiful.

So, I'm hoping to learn what Active learning is and, from Deidre's summary of her interest, hope that it's a view that I already have of learning anyway.
In reply to Emma Duke-Williams

Re: Deirdre Bonnycastle

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Welcome Emma,
You are the first person to join in this discussion. What you say about students is very important approve. If all their educational focus has been on getting good marks for their ability to memorize quickly, it can be very difficult to engage them particularly if their participation isn't going to influence their marks.
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In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: introduction

by ingo niestroj -
Good morning,
My name is Ingo Niestroj, I am the learning strategist / assistive devices technologist at Lambton College in Sarnia, Ontario.  Even though my focus is the student with learning disabilities mainly in a face to face setting, I am sure I will be able to pick up some new strategies that can be applied to face to face learning as well. I also hope that I will be able to contribute to discussions becoming an active / participating learner within the process.
I am looking forward to a great seminar.
cheers,
Ingo
In reply to ingo niestroj

Re: introduction

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
I became interested in Active Learning because of students with LD. My youngest daughter is very dyslexic. I find project-based learning that allows students to express their learning in their own way very powerful for these students. It also provides them an opportunity to shine in front of their peers.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by E.A. Draffan -

I am E.A. Draffan and I am a researcher at Southampton University - just up the road from Emma - we were meant to catch up together this summer but somehow it has flown by!! smile   I am very interested in the accessibility and usability of all the social networking technologies linked to active learning and the support of disabled students.

Best wishes E.A.

In reply to E.A. Draffan

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Welcome E.A.,
As I mentioned in my previous post, actively involving students with disabilities in ways that focus on their strengths can be a very powerful tool for inclusion.
In reply to E.A. Draffan

Re: Introductions

by anne marie mcewan -
I am Anne Marie McEwan. I have worked in work-based learning, on and off, for the past seven years. This has been mainly designing and facilitating strategic learning programmes for senior executives, although I did spend some time researching student and staff support in work-based learning.

I was working intensively last year on a joint collaboration between a UK university and Russian academy, designing and facilitating programmes for very senior executives. Having helped set up the programme, I now supervise a number of these executives, including one who works for a large telecommunications company, another introducing private sector governance into a municipal context, and yet another with responsibility for the strategic expansion of an engineering design company.

Supervision has been mainly face-to-face and individual. I want to extend this to include online group tutorials.

I am really looking forward to sharing and learning through this active learning forum.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Bonnie Skaalid -
Greetings
My name is Bonnie Skaalid and I'm currently convalescing from hip surgery so I'm not employed in any capacity at the moment. I just finished my PhD. During the course of my studies, I became very interested in how to facilitate deep learning because it seems that our school system encourages just the opposite -superficial coverage of too many topics with superficial evaluation. Too many students exit the K-12 system with the idea that learning is what is on a test and then it's okay to forget it. In that regard, I came across a priceless quote I'd like to share:

Learning is the input of new knowledge into your mind. I know I’ve learned something successfully when I’ve completed the question sheets and checked the answers off…. I only learn information for a short time because I think I only need it for the next test. If we don’t need to know something for the test then we don’t need to know it. After the test, I just forget it and think, “That’s it.” I just push the old knowledge aside and let all the new stuff come in. When you say “Remember back when we did this?” I think, “How are we meant to remember that?” (Thomas, 1999, p. 97)

Thomas, G. (1999). Student restraints to reform: Conceptual change issues in enhancing students' learning processes. Research in Science Education, 29 (1), 89-109.
In reply to Bonnie Skaalid

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Hi Bonnie, I'm so glad you joined big grin.
In medicine, we use the term bulimic learning to describe the process of stuffing yourself with facts, throwing up on the exam, then stuffing some more. Like medical bulimia, educational bulimia results in starvation.

I thought you might enjoy the image from the Discovery Channel.

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In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Colby Stuart -
Colby Stuart here, have taught post-grad courses on and off for over 20 years, in The Netherlands, France, UK and USA. Since I come from a combined business, creative and scientific background, I do things differently from most educators. My challenge in teaching has always been the same challenge facing students - "how to learn in an engaging way!" What's the purpose, meaning, significance of what we're learning?

Learning has so many new dimensions right now with virtual worlds and digital media. I want to learn as much as possible from others about how they build participation into their tools, processes and experiences and then how they gauge involvement and absorption. What's been successful, what has failed...and why.

Our group has a monumental challenge ahead of us in bringing Kids 2020 into the world - helping kids learn the role that values play in making choices. How to get the trainers trained? How to deliver the learning program to the kids in the most engaging way? How to get to a working learning model that we can prototype into culturally sensitive environments in both developed and underdeveloped countries?
In reply to Colby Stuart

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Welcome Colby,
I believe that education in 2020 will be very different from today. I'm an optimist who believes that technology can make a positive change in our ability to engage students in learning. Please take a look at the examples of what K-6 students are doing. This is our future and as post secondary teachers, I wonder if we are ready for them. 

http://technologyactivelearning.pbwiki.com/


In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Sharon Porterfield -

Greetings Everyone,

My name is Sharon Porterfield and I'm probably one of the few people on this list no longer working in academia. After five years as a contract instructional designer for the University of Saskatchewan and the Sask. Institute of Applied Science and Technology, I am now working for WestJet Airlines in their Learning and Development Unit.

My role is still that of an instructional designer, but it's taken me a while to learn that "training" is not quite the same as "education". Within this environment, we train people to perform a job. I find that higher level thinking is not often required as everything is performance based. There is very opportunity for little synthesis and analysis required in my courses - quite a switch from my previous employers!

Prior to becoming an ID, I was a classroom teacher - mostly special education, and within that, mostly behaviourally disordered students - for twelve years.

My interest in Active Learning persists to this day. I've always believe students must be engaged in their learning for it to be more than memorization for a test. What can we do - especially in online and blended environments, to engage the students more fully? This is especially important for me as many of the other people with whom I work are given the title "instructional designer", but do not have background training or education in the field. They are people who started out doing a front-line job and have moved up through the ranks to trainer, and now designer. Anything I can learn from this group to pass on to my colleagues will be of great value.

I look forward to this discussion.

Sharon

 

In reply to Sharon Porterfield

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Hi Sharon, it's great to read your introduction.

One of the things I like about Active Learning is it originated in cognitive science and can be equally useful in helping people remember (see some of the items under the techniques section) as it is helpful to increase understanding. One of the strengths of using Active Learning is the student and the teacher are always aware of where the students learning is at and errors can be corrected before final exam time. This is particularly important in training where the economic incentive to have students complete is very high.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Brenda Hallowes -
Hi Everyone, I haven't been active in the forums to date although I have been reading a daily digest of messages for nearly a year now.  I am presently teaching computer skills to grades 1 to 3 in an elementary school in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.  I have a second job which I do from home. This involves tutoring teachers enrolled in an Advanced Certificate in Education course through the university in KwaZulu Natal. The particular ACE course is about integrating ICT into education.  My interest in this forum is allied to this tutoring job.  All the interaction is done through email. The students work through the course material from a CD and submit activities and assignments for assessment. They are expected to interact with one another in discussing the activities but this rarely happens. I am interested in ways of motivating and affirming my group of students. I look forward to being a part of this forum.
In reply to Brenda Hallowes

Re: Introductions

by Betty Gilgoff -
Hi Brenda, I find it so interesting to read everyone's introductions here and see the connections between us all.  In your case Brenda, you and I do some very similar work. I work in Vancouver, B.C. with Simon Fraser University as an Inservice Faculty Associate supporting teachers completing graduate diploma programs (advanced work in education, possibly laddering to a Masters program). To date all of the programs I'm involved with are helping teachers integrate technology into their teaching. 

A large part of our program involves running summer institutes for teachers. Over this past year we have also begun incorporating a SCoPE classroom into our program by introducing it and building it into the Summer Institute. I've been delighted with the initial use of SCoPE to help teachers connect and discuss on line. Whereas in the past we've had some connection between participants within various cohort or community groups, this year with SCoPE we have managed to start connections and conversations across cohorts so that participants in various cities across the province have connected over issues and specific technology or learning needs. It has been fascinating to watch and to support. 
In reply to Betty Gilgoff

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Hello Betty,
Faculty courses are such a key component in developing effective post secondary faculty.  I'm looking forward to your input.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Heather Ross -
I've been working with apprenticeship training for the past two years at the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology. With the growing shortage of trades people, the need for offering upgrading for them without them leaving their workplaces has become extremely important.

A trades person can not learn by reading or hearing about how to do a task. They need hands on experience. Active learning is a necessity for these learners. Offering such hands on training at a distance has been challenging, but innovative.

I'm very interested in finding out if others are doing similar work.
In reply to Heather Ross

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Hi Heather, I'm so glad you joined us

One of my frustrations when researching examples for this session was the lack of online examples from trades and technology when I know some very fine work is being done in this area.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Heather Ross -
Deirdre,

Most of our stuff is locked up in WebCT (sigh), but I'm planning a VoiceThread piece about what we're doing. I'll put it on my blog when it's done. I just added my first attempt at using VoiceThread using my vacation pictures that you can see on the blog now.
In reply to Heather Ross

Re: Introductions

by E.A. Draffan -

Heather -this is a real find and I reckon would be very useful for many dyslexic students (LD in USA) - thank you so much smile  I am due to evaluate groups of Web 2.0 applications so this one will definitely go on the list!

In reply to Heather Ross

Re: Introductions

by Sharon Porterfield -

Heather -

This is very much the situation in which I find myself, too. Our people need to experience their jobs "hands on" and, as a result, we've moved to a more blended learning environment. The challenge, as always, is time and equipment. Can you share how you've managed to accommodate active learning within your courses?

Sharon

 

In reply to Sharon Porterfield

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
I've set up a thread for this session on Active Learning strategies and techniques. It feels a little like an orphan since no one has posted to that area yet. Please add your suggestions and resources to that thread
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Jim Julius -
I'm Jim Julius, associate director of Instructional Technology Services at San Diego State University. I've lurked on a number of SCoPE discussions and very much appreciated the contributions of many of you ... and wished that I could be a more "active learner" in terms of participating.

My background includes software engineering, five years teaching 4th/5th grade in Oregon, and, over the last five years, completing a doctoral degree in educational technology. During those five years I went from a K-12/teacher education focus (teaching educational technology courses for pre-service and in-service teachers) to a higher ed focus (supporting faculty uses of tech in a school of education, coordinating a faculty development center, and now my current position). ITS at SDSU provides media services, classroom technology support, multimedia development, learning management system support, etc., as well as instructional design consultation and leadership with faculty who are increasingly interested in course redesign for blended and online teaching & learning.

As a teacher in K-12 and higher ed, facilitation of active learning (focus on student engagement, constructivism, collaborative learning, complex problem solving, authentic assessment, metacognition, etc., etc.) has always been my preferred modus operandi. We advocate this with regard to SDSU faculty uses of instructional technologies, and it's always a delight when faculty report that they were able to get students out of their passive mode which is so typical of most large lecture courses.

As a faculty developer, my interest in active learning falls into several interrelated areas:
1. How to effectively advocate for and enable faculty to teach with active learning techniques (beyond those enthusiastic, passionate-about-teaching-well faculty).
2. How to capture results - and enable faculty to approach the act of teaching for active learning in an inquiry-oriented way - in order to have good data about the outcomes of active learning.
3. The roles for technology in active learning, and how to widen the circle of faculty who use technology effectively (beyond posting syllabi on Blackboard and clicking through PowerPoints in lecture).
4. How to incorporate active learning into faculty development activities. It feels ironic to give a from-the-front PowerPoint lecture on active learning to faculty, but often that's what happens. I'm not a completely anti-lecture person. There is a place for it - especially when you have a primed, receptive group eager for key ideas and information, and a short amount of time with that group. But I also believe that faculty who came up through a lecture-oriented educational system really need to experience being an active learner to most effectively "get" active learning.

- Jim
In reply to Jim Julius

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Welcome Jim,
When I was putting together examples of technology-based Active Learning for this session http://technologyactivelearning.pbwiki.com/I was very frustrated by the lack of examples from faculty development. Maybe this is a project some of the SCoPE members could take on??

I think many teachers feel like the person in this Discovery Channel cartoon because they don't have a sense of what an active environment looks like.
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In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Bonnie Johnston -
Hi everybody,

I am currently a course developer with the BC Ambulance Service, where I'm developing learning for face-to-face, blended, and online environments for paramedics.

I used to be an ESL teacher for new adult immigrants to Canada and did this for 14 years in academic and community-based organizations and private career training institutes.

Active learning is vital - as an ESL instructor, I'd say to my students, "In this class, you have to do all the work because I already know how to speak English." The key that I left out here is that I would do all the work in the preparation for creating those active learning opportunities for them.

The challenge I am currently facing and why I am eager to join this conversation is how to create active learning environments for online learning where no opportunities exist for social interaction and where the learner is required to engage individually with the learning. We currently do not have the space for collaboration such as forums, blogs, or wikis, and there is the perception that online learning means reading text and/or viewing a video and doing tests. I am currently building such learning around scenarios, problems, and case studies .... but would like.... well .... more.

- Bonnie J.
In reply to Bonnie Johnston

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Hi Bonnie,
Thanks for introducing the idea that active learning isn't just group focused. Whenever students engage in learning by interacting with the content, they are actively learning.
Some suggestions that we use with medical students:
Medical Mnemonics  http://www.medicalmnemonics.com/
Quandary (Action Mazes) http://www.halfbakedsoftware.com/quandary.php
Human Anatomy http://www.innerbody.com/index.html
They also like crossword puzzles, jeopardy and snakes and ladders for learning vocabulary and reviewing for exams. All of these are available on the session wiki.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Inge Ignatia de Waard -

Dear all

I am the coordinator for eLearning at the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp, Belgium.

At ITM we work with post-graduate medical students and we have online master courses (veterinary department) and short courses (clinical department).

One of the main principles in our eLearning program is active learning because of the specialist topics the students have to follow. The content has to be knowledge based and not memorizing heaps of content, for the simple reason that everything in the medical world (and especially HIV/AIDS, malaria…) is changing so rapidly it is essential that students can find the latest relevant content.

 

In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by bronwyn hegarty -
hello everyone
lucky last? I am an educational developer at Otago Polytechnic in Dunedin, New Zealand. I assist academic staff to design and develop their courses for flexible learning. As such I am managing (juggling) a number of internally funded development projects. I am also a researcher and involved in several externally funded collaborative projects. For example, online information literacy modules at: http://oil.otago.ac.nz

In my "spare time" I also teach courses using web 2 strategies - more about this on the next forum - strategies for active learning. I am looking forward to sharing ideas and resources and picking up some new strategies for active learning online.
Bronwyn

In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Christine Sinclair -
Hi everyone
I'm Christine Sinclair, a lecturer in academic practice at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow - and also an online student at the University of Edinburgh where I am taking a masters course in e-learning.  I'm doing this because I like to find out about student experience by being a student, but I'm thoroughly enjoying the course as well.  It is very creative and supportive.  I believe that what makes it work is the level of detail and feedback that each tutor puts in: it must be incredibly time-consuming for them to create and follow through stimulating activities for a wide range of students.

I'm about to start a module on e-learning, politics and society and this forum has already been raising some interesting issues for me about the roles of educational and other institutions in the online environment.
In reply to Christine Sinclair

Re: Introductions

by Emma Duke-Williams -
Hi Christine
Is that the online course where they use Second Life quite a bit? I'd be interested in knowing how you find it. I'm involved with a couple of MScs at Portsmouth (one in eLearning Technologies, which we've run for about 4 years now, and another in IT, which is just about to start). I'm hoping to use SecondLife as an option for the MSc eLT students - and also (optionally) for some on Campus final year undergraduates. So, it would be interesting to hear how you've found it as a learning environment (if you are doing that course)

Emma
In reply to Emma Duke-Williams

Second Life

by Christine Sinclair -
Hi Emma
It is that course and we do use Second Life quite a bit, though it hasn't been compulsory.  I have found using it intriguing, but have had more resistance to it than I expected to.  I'm still trying to work out why and have been blogging about it. Some points about this are:
  • It's hard to make Second Life compulsory because it's such a high spec application.  Some of us did experience some difficulties getting into it and occasionally people could feel excluded.
  • There are some very interesting issues relating to avatars and the extent to which they are an expression of identity.
  • Some spaces feel uncomfortable and it is always nice to be able to teleport yourself out of trouble.  The tutors take great pains to create safe spaces and safe occasions where you can be accompanied.
There are all sorts of other issues too - some people love it, others are less keen.  I'm happy to try to answer any questions.
In reply to Christine Sinclair

Re: Second Life

by Emma Duke-Williams -
Thank you for pointing me to your blog - I've just read it & have so many comments - you have many similar ideas to me. (And, I'm also a Lecturer & doing a Part Time MSc at the same time...)
  • It's hard to make Second Life compulsory because it's such a high spec application.  Some of us did experience some difficulties getting into it and occasionally people could feel excluded.
Yes, we're going to make it optional - though I think that for my face to face students, as we have it running from memory sticks & the labs are pretty good, I may well make them use it for at least one tutorial.
  • There are some very interesting issues relating to avatars and the extent to which they are an expression of identity.
Again, we've had similar discussions; also the question of whether or not students should let us know who they are. For one of the units that I teach, I'm considering letting them use SL as an alternative to Flash for designing learning materials - so they'll have to tell me who they are. For another course, as it's going to be more of a "field trip", I won't be so worried about who is who.
  • Some spaces feel uncomfortable and it is always nice to be able to teleport yourself out of trouble.  The tutors take great pains to create safe spaces and safe occasions where you can be accompanied.
I like the idea of accompanying you to areas that you might feel uncomfortable in. I agree about the teleporting - wouldn't it be nice to be able to teleport in real life, when you realise you're somewhere you'd rather not be!
Just as a matter of interest, have you seen the NMC's orientation island? They're in the process of setting one up - and it's aimed at Educators, so the orientation, as well as moving / using things etc., is meant to cover learning type things. I've not tried it, the last time I tried they'd removed it, so I'm waiting till they get it to set up an alt account & use that to test it with.

Emma
In reply to Christine Sinclair

Re: Second Life

by E.A. Draffan -

I would just love to know how you make it usable and accessible to all so that it would comply with our Disability Discrimination Act or do you offer alternatives that can provide a similar active learning experience?

Best wishes E.A.

In reply to E.A. Draffan

Re: Second Life accessibility

by Christine Sinclair -
E.A. - I found an interesting debate on Second Life and accessibility when I was thinking about this myself - this was back at the start of the year which I suppose is ages ago in cyberspace so there is probably something newer around.  Linden Labs themselves joined in the debate.

Second Life raises all sorts of issues around disability, some of them positive e.g.:
  • it has huge potential for including some students who are often excluded, though it is very difficult for others
  • it may exclude some people who are not used to being excluded and therefore perhaps sensitizes them to disability
  • use of Second Life as a teaching tool has to be considered in the same way as many other teaching tools (e.g. some virtual learning environments) that may be inaccessible to some students; I think that the strangeness of Second Life makes this more "obvious" and again it may help raise awareness of disability.
In reply to Christine Sinclair

Re: Second Life accessibility

by E.A. Draffan -

Thank you so much for that really useful link which made  very interesting reading.  So much is also about user preferences and how we like to learn. 

I am looking at all these Web 2.0 applications with TechDis and just like the work done to make content in any other application usable and accessible, we have to find practical work arounds to suit us all and the idea of more audio 3D feedback sounds interesting.  

Best wishes E.A.  

In reply to Christine Sinclair

Re: Second Life accessibility

by Michael McVey -

Regarding exclusion:

I have never been more clumsy as I am in Second Life. My avatar walks into walls, sits awkwardly in unusual places during lectures, and I find when I act as a guide for a group of other avatars that my presence is distinctly underwhelming compared to those who have spent more time in Second Life purchasing frills, feathers, and other stylish accessories. In that respect, and in respect of not knowing all of the keystrokes to make for a smoother online experience, I certainly have found myself marginalized in some discussions.

From a social point of view, there certainly is a learning curve to follow in this virtual environment. The same might also be said for the social structure of an online discussion list or bulletin board. There are always conventions to follow and the conventions will certainly be involved as the population of participants in these virtual groups increases.

My clumsy avatar, by the way, is named Oyama Maroon. Feel free to say hello if you encounter me there.

In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Michael McVey -

Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Michael McVey and I am a brand-new assistant professor in the teacher education Department at Eastern Michigan University. My focus is on educational media and technology.

Prior to coming to Michigan, I was a classroom teacher in both special-education and English literature in high schools in Canada and the United States. I am particularly interested in online communities of practice. In 1994, I initiated an online discussion list for teachers with a focus on teaching whole language methods. After 12 years, we had over 100,000 posts to the list and I feel as though I should have earned an additional degree or two in education.

In reply to Michael McVey

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Welcome Michael,
Have you looked at Ning, the social networking community you can create. I think it has tremendous potential for communities of practice. You can see an example at http://classroom20.ning.com/
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Michael McVey -

Thank you. Yes I looked at NING.com and have already set up several networks including one for my class, a private network for our friends back in Tucson, and a few others. I am enjoying the networks for School 2.0 and College 2.0 as well. I love them.

Unfortunately, my online discussion list which was e-mailed based and still quite active failed to transfer over to NING very well. It appears that most of the 200 to 300 subscribers are mostly comfortable with electronic mail. A few hardy souls did give the Ning site a chance.

In reply to Michael McVey

Re: Introductions

by Lisa Valentine -
Hi Diedre and Michael and everyone else

I'm Lisa Valentine and currently working as an elearning adviser in the North West of England.  I'm based at Lancaster University and by remit is accessibility and inclusion.  My background is special needs and have been teaching learners with LD for 18 years.
In reply to Lisa Valentine

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Welcome Lisa,
Active learning offers some great opportunities for students with learning disabilities to work in learning environments that aren't single mode. Please join our discussion on techniques and assessment.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Deleted user -
Hello

My name is Daniel J Garvin

I am not in academia, but my wife is and because of her I have followed the tenets of Inquiry-based instruction.
I have found in my consulting career that this is the best way for individuals to learn and retain what they have learned.
I am interested in collaborating with others regarding what has worked, what hasn't, and diverse ways of looking at things.
I look forward to any discussions.

Cheers
Dan
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Jeffrey Keefer

by Jeffrey Keefer -

I just realized that I have been commenting without having first introduced myself.

My name is Jeffrey Keefer, and I am an instructional designer working in a large homecare nursing agency in New York City. I also teach organizational communication at the Stern School of Business at New York University.

I never used to prefer active learning (too much work, just tell me what I should know) until the last few years, when I studied the work of Paulo Freire and started to study critical and postmodern theory, after which I became aware of power issues in education. I see active learning as empowerment and repecting the experiences of the learner. This is a recurring theme on my blog Silence and Voice.

I am really interested in learning more about this from so many people who have done more formal online education than I have.

In reply to Jeffrey Keefer

Re: Jeffrey Keefer

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Hello Jeffrey,
Thank you for bringing a new element into the discussion. When students are passive learners, the teacher controls what is learned. Students who are actively engaged encounter many ways of interpreting information. This multiplicity can be difficult for students and teachers who want correct answers.

I've added your Blog to the list of resources in the SCoPE wiki.
http://scope.lidc.sfu.ca/mod/wiki/view.php?id=703
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Therese Weel -
Hello Everyone

One of my previous roles was providing software training for an enterprise software company.   Boot Camp, Train the Trainer and End User.  I currently provide technology assistance at the Faculty of Education.

This year I have facilitated some online discussions on technology topics.

My interest in active learning is for my own use.  In my line of work I need to absorb hordes of information and  understand new concepts quickly.  Always interested in broadening my horizons and learning something new.

I've been lurking here all week!


In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Colby Stuart -
Announcement of upcoming event:

DevLearn 2007 - eLearning Development & Conference
http://www.elearningguild.com/content.cfm?selection=doc.395&templateid=4
5-8 November 2007
San Jose, California
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by B Ferrell -
I have been lurking this week and practicing with using Moodle in another space, but thought I would make a few comments!

My name is Bev Ferrell,EdD, independent ID, moderator of ITForum and trdev. I see that several of you are in the health field area and some of you that have responded appear to be dealing with adult learners.

Active learning should always be a part of any learning process! I have spent the last week gathering some resources, papers etc. that I hope you will find useful and will put them somewhere in this seminar if Deidre will specify where she would like them.

I have links to over 75 research and opinion documents on active learning from ERIC that are download-able. Only took me 4 days/nights to sort through the 300+ that were available! smilewide eyeswide eyes Some are general active learning related and some are specifically related to web issues. My other comments I will hopefully place in the correct threads.

Bev

(Edited by Sylvia Currie - original submission Sunday, 16 September 2007, 01:27 PM)

In reply to B Ferrell

Re: Introductions

by Derek Chirnside -
Hi Bev.

This arrived in my mail 20 minutes ago as we wrapped up a 2 week discussion on e-learning policy . . .

Those who followed the discussion from the last fortnight may be interested in an ITForum discussion (based in the US), called “Who killed e-learning?” There are some themes closely related to what was discussed. Instructions for subscribing to ITForum are at http://it.coe.uga.edu/itforum/upcoming.html. The discussion paper (PDF) can be found at http://it.coe.uga.edu/itforum/Cronje101/Whokillede-learning.pdf.

Is this you behind this?

-Derek


In reply to Derek Chirnside

Re: Introductions

by B Ferrell -
Derek
I moderate ITForum, but I didn't send you that message..and the discussion for the paper is just starting this week.

Bev
In reply to B Ferrell

Re: Introductions

by Jenni Harding -

Hi Bev,

 

I tried to access the paper, but it comes up with a Cantebury NZ authentication message.    Jenni

In reply to Jenni Harding

Re: Introductions

by B Ferrell -
Jenni
The link issue is probably coming from Derek's university firewall through their email system. I have sent you the paper under separate email, but it can be accessed directly at

http://it.coe.uga.edu/itforum/upcoming.html

Bev

In reply to B Ferrell

Re: Introductions

by Jenni Harding -

Thanks Bev.  What a great network this is.  Most of the time I lurk in here, and lurch from meeting to meeting and task to task, so it's refreshing to see what's happening.

I know one of the questions asked in this forum (or maybe it was another!) was about how Web 2.0 is being applied in actual teaching and learning, and this forum goes a long way to answering that question. 

I've been using a blend of forums, webboards, Wikis, Blogs, Flexible Learning Toolboxes (learning objects) and LMS's for the last 8 years.  One example, although I'm not sure it goes directly to active learning, which is the basis of whatever tool I use, is at http://designing.flexiblelearning.net.au/learning_design/sequences/NSW/index.htm

In reply to Jenni Harding

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Project based learning is a great way to actively involve students in understanding concepts and theories. Your simulation and real workplace focus are very good examples of taking an educational approach and making it useable for learning. Can I add the link to my personal wiki as examples of active learning in higher eduction?
In reply to B Ferrell

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Welcome Bev,
Thank you for offering to provide this great resource, please add them to the wiki http://scope.lidc.sfu.ca/mod/wiki/view.php?id=703

As a health education person you might want to check my Blog http://blogs.usask.ca/medical_education/
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by B Ferrell -
I have copied it out of my "play" wiki where I am learning how to use them and made a separate page for it in this forum wiki so as to keep your main page cleaner. All you have to do is click on the Eric PDF Files link to reach the other page.

Bev
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Dr. Nellie Deutsch -
Great to be part of this community!

My name is Nellie Deutsch. I am originally from Toronto, Canada but have been living in Israel for many years. I teach English to speakers of Hebrew and other languages at the high school level. I integrate technology into all of my classes via Moodle and WebQuests that I have created. I help my students become aware of the importance of being actively engaged in learning via understanding brain-based learning and meta cognition. I try to break the traditional row by row frontal classroom design, encourage teamwork, and  group dynamics while sitting in a circle.

I am currently pursuing a doctorate in education, curriculum, and instruction at the UOP online.

In reply to Dr. Nellie Deutsch

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Welcome Nellie,
Thank you for raising the idea of WebQuests. I have seen them used very effectively in online courses. Please go to the techniques area of this discussion and talk more about how you are using this technique.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Webquests

by Sharon Porterfield -
My M.Ed. project dealt with the Use of Webquests in Tertiary Education - but wasn't specific to the online environment. They are an extremely effective active learning tool!
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Laura Proctor -
Hello, everyone.
  My name is Laura Proctor and I am part of Learning Systems at the University of Victoria and am interested in understanding Active Learning to better understand how new media and technologies can support that approach.
  My participation, which will hopefully be more active this coming week, is also an act of "active learning" -- my goal is to improve my own ability to collaborate online and to better understand how to help others do so.
In reply to Laura Proctor

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Welcome Laura,
I've learned so much from participating and now facilitating in SCoPE seminars.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Cristina Costa -
Hi Dear all,

I have been following in a passive way for the last feww while trying to catch up with work again after vacation.
I hope to become active now!!!
First things first: here a little bit about myself:

I used to be an EFL teacher and Naval Officer at the Portuguese Navy. Right now, I am working at the University of Salford, UK, as an Education Technologies Development Officer. I am coordinating several e-learning projects. It has been a very enriching experience.
But what I really love is teaching and I am very interested in studying the usage of webtools to enhance active learning and the development of critical minds!! ;-). I have recently finishing writing my Masters' dissertation on Communities of Practice and Curriculum Studies.
I am always looking forward to learning more about these topics.;)

I usually reflect about my learning path here.
In reply to Cristina Costa

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Thank you for sharing your blog Cristina. It is a very good example of how students can reflect on their learning overtime by using a blog.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Introductions

by Nalin Abeysekera -

Hello! I am Nalin Abeysekera. Sri Lankan. Lecturer at open University of Sri Lanka.I am working as a instructional designer for the faculty. I did my degree in marketing and reading my masters also from marketing. I had over 2 years of practical experience in marketing in the industry like to promote e-learning in developing countries like sri lanka by using my knowledge and practice in marketing.

In reply to Nalin Abeysekera

Re: Introductions

by Sylvia Currie -
Welcome, Nalin! Nalin and Nellie (further on up the thread! :-) ) are facilitating our October SCoPE seminar on eLearning in Developing countries. More details will be available in the next week.
In reply to Nalin Abeysekera

Re: Introductions

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Welcome Nalin. I love the way online discussions bring together people from so many different countries and disciplines.