Lisa, well said. On Ramblings on assessment that work and assumptions that won’t.
This means that designing an online class is not just an exercise in transferring pedagogy, or plugging things in. It is an awareness that the exact same difficulties that haunt us in on-site classes are not magically solved online. These challenges include students not attending class, not reading the syllabus, not understanding when they ask a question and it is answered, not asking questions when they need to, missing tests, having low reading ability, being inexperienced at processing basic information, and not being aware of cues given to help them.
Would it depend on the context of learning and the level of mastery of learning of the learners when considering which teaching pedagogy is most applicable in face to face or online classes? Some learners need and prefer more guidance than others. As each adult learner is different in terms of their learning goals, learning readiness, background knowledge and skills, it would be important to identify their needs, assist them in developing learning strategies in an on-line learning environment, and support and encourage them throughout their learning journey.
The challenge with the standardised assessment tools (like multiple choice) is that it could be more applicable for knowledge based subjects with known answers. But when it relates to practical skills, for example the use of Web 2.0 tools – blogs, wikis, then it might not be applicable. If we as educators are encouraging the learners to learn using the PLN/E, then the assessment rubrics have to reflect on the application of those tools and the “quality of connections and learning”. These would also include the strategies that one could adopt in the development of connections with networks, resources and people.
I often found that learning the use of those tools represents half of the story. A lot of learners have been educated in the traditional teaching environment, where teacher is the main “sense-maker”. So, some learners might find it difficult to adapt to an entirely new way of “facilitating” and learning by doing it themselves in the use of Web 2.0 tools. Some of our learners need more support in Web 2.0 tools, whilst others need literacy skills (reading, understanding instructions etc.) to succeed in online learning. There might also be a transitional period where learners would feel overwhelmed with information and may even be confused with the use of tools.
Tools are aids of learning, and so some mastery of tools are pre-requisite of online learning. So, in both face to face and online classes, I think it is important to understand the sort of support that the learners need in order to succeed in learning. As educator, it is imperative to ensure the learners are aware of the implications of learning online and so they could solve their learning problems either by themselves or with the support of others including teachers, peers and learning networks.
Dave in his post points out that our focus of teaching and learning should be on the responsibility of the work that they do. The literacies that we need are not digital. THEY ARE HUMAN.
But we need to be thinking about talking to people and teaching students what it means to be responsible to the work that you do. What it means to decide that my work is done because it is done right to the best of my ability to do it… not because i have managed to satisfy some obsessive rubric.
The literacies that we need are not digital. THEY ARE HUMAN. We need to be responsible to the products of hands… even if they are typed through a keyboard. The digital may have given us an opportunity to band together, but the banding is not about technology, it’s about us raising a very old standard.
I am still pondering on Dave’s post. What sort of literacies would be critical in online teaching and learning?