To share or not to share

So after participating in ONL161 I am now learning more about OER – open educational resources by participating in a course named “Learning to (re)use open educational resources”. It is all free and I made friends with four other participants tonight in the discussion forum. The course is a part of…

“The ExplOERer Project, co-funded by the European Commission under the Erasmus+ programme to promote OER sustainability through OER adoption and re-use in professional practice”.

To share is a human right as I see it. But does it have to be me? There are many fears to consider. Is my material good enough to share with others? What if someone thinks I have low quality of for instants my recordings? It is easier to reuse what someone else has done – to consume and not produce. This will be a challenge for me – to dare to go public!

Photo: Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre by Davide Simonetti (CC BY_NC 2.0)

 

All good things (must) come to an end

First of all I would like to praise Cambridge Dictionaries Online and Google translate for an inexhaustible source of knowledge. Second, I would like to embrace all my group members for being such good friends throughout the whole course period and for making me feel comfortable and safe trying to speak and write in English. In ten fantastic couple of weeks I think I have went from crappy English to good enough English. Thank you PBL group 7!

Yep, so ONL161 has come to an end. It has been an enjoyable experience and some extremely intense weeks. I have loved every second about them but some days I have felt like a violin string due to stress. Just as excited like I was at the beginning of the course just as exhausted I am now at the end. Gosh, I have learned a lot!

I am home from work at 17.30-18. Then it is time to make dinner for the family and homework’s with the kids. Left of the evening is 1,5-2 hours. Twice a week we have had Skype meetings including work before and after. Furthermore, one or two evenings desperately trying to read the suggested articles/videos ect. At weekends trying to catch up what has been missing from last week… The course is far more time consuming then I even could imagine. With that said – the whole course is far more of everything then I could ever imagine!

I have learned to be social in a digital context, both in our great BIG community as well as in our small PBL community. I have made friends with – Beautiful and inspiring smart – Nour from Sudan, Marc – The gentleman – from South Africa, always  – Friendly Darth Wader – Jennifer and – The unforgettable Scottish – Mr Creelman.

I have started my own first blog – The fledglings thoughts – and I think that I have found my way of writing blog post just the way I am (the digital me). I have been practicing my critical thinking by commenting on others excellent blog posts. Learning about openness and sharing. I have participated in inspiring and thoughtful discussions in our PBL group.

There are so many thing that I take with me from this course. One thing that comes into my mind is the positive and sharing atmosphere that has been significant throughout the whole course. I will miss it! Last but not least I would like to thank the ONL-team for designing and facilitating best course ever.

Illustration: Kvinna i färg by Maja Larsson at Knyckenilluku.se

 

Not so digital

OK, so encouraged by my facilitator Mr Creelman and wonderful group member Nour I would like to share a story and an idea for badges with you. It is not digital, it is simple, it is cheap (in a good way) and most of all it works.

A friend of mine is a nurse and works as a care developer. Some of her work includes implementation of guidelines. As a result of this she needed to promote and highlight some topics; nutrition, prevention of injures like fall and ulcer. The whole design of the intervention was less formal. Her ambition was actually to get her colleagues to talk and discuss the different topics. She had set up several stations, at the ward, for the nurses. During the day they could stroll along the corridor and pop in at a station and take part in an education or a discussions group. As an evidence of their participation she gave them a colored paper clip to attach on the uniform (green for nutrition/education, red for ulcer/discussion, blue for prevention of fall injures/discussion ect.)

At lunchtime those nurses who had not kept pace with the others flocked around the stations wanting to participate but most of all get the paper clips in the right colors. What happened next was even more surprisingly – the doctors at the ward started to ask about the paper clips. Why had all the nurses colored paper clips on their uniforms? What did the paper clips stand for? How could they get colored paper clips of their own?

Those patients who were able to mobilize to a station learned about for instance; how to prevent fall when coming home. Even relatives participated in the intervention. They all got colored paper clips.

At the end of the day the the entire workforce including some patients and relatives wore colored paper clip at their uniforms or clothes. The colored paper clips was a sign of their participation in a learning intervention but also a sign of simple motivation.

Level up

Twice a year I am teaching nursing student about how to administrate and handle central venous catheters. One of the learning outcomes is that the students are expected to reflect over risks and how to avoid them. As a motivation factor I will try to add some gamification elements for next term. I have designed different learning activities and everyone of them represent some sort of badge. I´m not sure of that it has to be digital but that would of course be most exclusive. I have to think about how to solve it. Nevertheless, when achieving a task the student earns a badge: recorded lecturer, group discussion, practical skill training (including several skills which merit a badge each), reflection on a dilemma, digital assessment. I am really looking forward to this – let´s level up!

Photo: Medals by Shane (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Safety-net

The big question – Have the students reached the learning outcomes?

When reading about the model “The 7Cs of Learning Design” I fell for the design of the “Consider” activity. At first I was stucked in the thought of reflection but pretty soon I saw something else – feedback!

It is well known that feedback is a motivating factor so why not try to focus on that I thought…?! The more I read the more I came to like the idea of using all the three types of feedback in the same course. Before I had only thought of using one at a time. Now I´m thinking of redesigning one of my courses with feedback from: me as a teacher, peers and by themselves. The three snap links in the picture to this blog post are suppose to symbolize the three different ways feedback can be given. The hand is the students learning process and as I see it the feedback is some kind of safety-net while achieving learning outcomes. So, by designing a course with different sorts of feedback the conditions for learning should be enhanced.

Learning activity with embedded feedback from me as a teacher could be given the student while reflect upon a case-dilemma. Feedback should be given both during and after discussing the dilemma. The discussion could easily occur on Skype. Another way of getting feedback is from a peer. My idea is that a peer observe another peer while solving a task. Afterwards the student can reflect and give feedback on what went well and what can be done better another time. Maybe a checklist, of how the task is supposed to be accomplished is a good idea? Finally the students may use Gibb´s reflective learning cycle as a structure when giving feedback to themselves.

For next term I will try to design something like this and see how that works out.

References
1. Conole, G. (2015). The 7Cs of Learning Design.

Photo: http://www.pixabay.com

 

Unus pro omnibus, omnes pro uno

Like the three musketeers – one for all, all for one – we teachers can choose to stand together united and strong. I´m thinking of openness and sharing. What if we could share and how do we do it? We have discussed this in my PBL group at the ONL161 course. Our prominent facilitator Alastair Creelman told us about an exclusive fellowship for teachers. The leaders had made a clear and strategic decision about openness. Inclusion into the fellowship was equal to prestige and money. Membership required digital literacy, open to openness and a portfolio of resources shared with Creative Commons.

I talked to the professor at my faculty and YES we do have a policy to “go digital” but as I see it we have a long way to go. It is exciting, isn´t it? The future is ahead of us and we can create it together. I will hereby declare to work for more openness and I will try to be a good example for my colleagues. I have started by contacting a colleges at another institution who is teaching the same topic as I am. We will meet in a couple of weeks and talk about how we can collaborate. Luckily both of us can see benefits by working together. To be continued…

Photo: http://www.pixabay.com

 

Amoeba

Right at the beginning, when I investigated more about open educational practices I came to think of an amoeba. A small and primitive microscopic organism who is single-celled. However the simplicity in this little unicellular organism which may alter its shape as required amaze me due to its flexible and adaptable nature.

Weller and Anderson (2013) is writing about the opportunities and challenges that has occurred in conjunction with the digital revolution. One challenge for higher education and institutions is to have the ability to adapt to digital challenges. The article made me aware of the term “resilience” – how important it is to be elastic and distensible. When reading about different systems capacity to absorb disturbance and to reorganize while undergoing changes I´m back on the amoeba track. How extraordinary for a primitive single-celled organism to adapt to circumstances necessary for its survival. Could we be inspired of this simplicity when accepting the challenge of openness?

 

Reference
Weller, M., & Anderson, T. (2013). Digital resilience in higher education.European Journal of Open, Distance and E-Learning, 16(1), 53.

Photo: Amoeba ATC by Tim Ereneta (CC BY-NC 2.0)