#PLENK2010 Research into the Design and Delivery of MOOC (I)

I read Steve’s post on “Why engagement in MOOC (PLENK2010) is so hard” with great interests.
Many thanks Steve for summarizing and culling from forum posts and Elluminate sessions of #PLENK.  It helps in understanding what the expectations and perspectives of educators (or facilitators) and some of the participants are and what the course offers.
As I am conducting research in the design and delivery of MOOC, this initial discussion could  provide insights into the development of research questions into this area.  So, many thanks to our facilitators George, Stephen, Rita and Dave, and our fellow participants who have shared their views on the design and delivery of PLENK2010 (MOOC).
Just to share that Jenny, Roy and I had conducted research into CCK08, and you would find our research papers in Blogging and Forum as Communication and Learning Tools in my blog.  This might provide a glimpse as to how the PLENK2010 MOOC might be different from the design, structure and delivery of CCK08.
Relating to the design of the course: please refer to how this course works?
Would these questions help in formulating the research into MOOC?
Questions for the Instructor:
1. What would you like to include and expect in the design of MOOC?  What are the design criteria? Why are they important to you and the participants?
2. What would you like to include and expect in the delivery of MOOC? What are the delivery factors that you have considered? Why are they important to you and the participants?
3. What are the essential elements of a MOOC that would enhance the learning of the participants? Why do you think they are essential?
4. How would you evaluate the learning of the participants in MOOC?
5. What would you suggest to improve in this MOOC?
Questions for the Participants:
1. What would you like to include and expect in the design of MOOC?  What are the design criteria used in MOOC? Why are they important to you as a participant?
2. What would you like to include and expect in the delivery of MOOC? What are the delivery factors that you would like to include in your learning? Why are they important to you?
3.  What are the essential elements of a MOOC that would enhance your learning? Why are they important to you?
4. How would you evaluate your learning in this MOOC?
5. What would you suggest to improve in this MOOC?
These are just initial questions that I would like to consider.  These are based on the collection of views, ideas and perspectives from the instructors and participants in PLENK2010 on various occasions and sources – forum, blog posts, The Daily and Elluminate so far.
Would you like to share your views and questions in this Research into the Design and Delivery of MOOC (PLENK2010)?  Please feel free to comment and criticize on the approach and the questions relating to this research.
If you feel you would like to contribute, add or modify the questions, please feel free to include them here or in the forum, or the wiki here.
You might also like to leave your comments in any media of your choice.  Please include #PLENK2010 in your post and indicate that it is referring to the Design and Delivery of MOOC.  Please alert me where they are so I could consolidate or aggregate in the next 2 weeks.
Please note that your participation of this research (i.e. the design of questions in this Research into the Design and Delivery of MOOC (PLENK2010)  is voluntary), and you are welcome to join or leave this discussion of questionnaire design for the survey at any stage of the research.
I would suggest that any questions proposed by you be allowed to be included into the final questionnaire, and so please feel free to state if you would or would not like to have your proposed questions be used in this research.
If you want to respond to any of the questions of this research at this stage, please let me know whether you would allow me to include them in the research analysis and report.  I would summarize the findings and so any views expressed by you would be anonymous.
Many thanks for your consideration.
John
Postscript:
Just found this by Dave. Very interesting video.
The key points are: connectedness and openness

12 thoughts on “#PLENK2010 Research into the Design and Delivery of MOOC (I)

  1. Pingback: Записная книжка Владимира Алексеева : #PLENK2010. The neXt Web

  2. Successful Networks (or in the case of PLENK MOOC) : Refer to what connectivism ishttp://halfanhour.blogspot.com/2007/02/what-connectivism-is.html by Stephen Downes: This implies a pedagogy that (a) seeks to describe ‘successful’ networks (as identified by their properties, which I have characterized as diversity, autonomy, openness, and connectivity) and (b) seeks to describe the practices that lead to such networks, both in the individual and in society (which I have characterized as modeling and demonstration (on the part of a teacher) and practice and reflection (on the part of a learner)).

  3. Interesting findings from the paper http://pleconference.citilab.eu/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/ple2010_submission_9.pdf:
    Table 5. Crucial factors for the success of the individual portfolio from the students’ point of view.
    FACTORS MENTIONED BY THE STUDENTS
    fr.
    Intrinsic Factors Motivation 9 Interest 3 Effort 4
    Creativity
    2 Time spent 5 Working on a weekly basis, regularly and frequently throughout the semester 5
    Taking part in the lessons
    2
    Individual operation of the tools
    2
    Individual management and organisation
    1 Carrying out research and practical activities to deepen the knowledge acquired in the lessons 4
    Reflection and critical sense
    2
    Responsibility and individual commitment
    1
    Awareness of the importance of the achievement of the individual portfolio for personal development and for collaborative learning
    1
    Definition of the learning aims and taking part in compliance with them
    1
    Individual learning style
    1
    Ease and adeptness at manipulating the technologies
    1
    Extrinsic factors Guidelines, support and suggestions given by the teachers on the activities to be developed 3
    Teacher encouragement for student participation
    1

  4. Based on blog posted so far:including this one by Nicola

    Some of the emerging themes include:

    Time and information management: Some participants found it ok in managing their time in the course whilst others often found it hard, due to personal reasons and often feelings of overwhelming amount of information to be covered, and didn’t feel comfortable in the “selection” and filtering of resources or artifacts. Facilitators did attempt to “intervene” or instruct by convincing or influencing participants the importance of focus and clustering. Also, a “survey” type of collective inquiry was initiated in the forum to gain a deeper understanding of the major challenges and issues in such management of time AND learning in the course PLENK.

    Connections: Participants often wondered how their voices would be heard in such a MOOC PLENK, whether it be in the blogs and or forums. Stephen responded with explanation on how to get voices heard. Often there seemed to be a lack of responses or comments even after the participants have made repeated attempts and extra efforts in trying to connect through their blogs or posting in forums. The trend in the forums did show a decrease in the number of postings, whereas the number of blog postings did show some increase throughout the past weeks. The facilitators did attempt to convince and influence the participants to move the discussion to blogs, so as to reduce the impact of overwhelming of information or “information overload due to discussion in the forum”. Some discussion on having concise posting was raised, but there were some divided opinions in the forums. Some connections in the forum seem to have focussed on more in-depth discussion of the pedagogical aspects of PLE/N, that could foster conceptual connections. However, the connections were again rather diverse and “weak” and that left with some evidences of critical thinking and evaluation. More evidences of research support may be necessary to substantiate those claims. The facilitators (Rita in particular) did attempt to cultivate the connections through more facilitation with research findings, coupled with personal insights. This reinforces some of the more emergent concepts arising from the MOOC – (a) learner autonomy, (b) power issues, and (c) critical literacies. Besides, the notion of openness in MOOC (PLENK) were raised by various bloggers Jenny Mackness, David Wiley, Stephen Downes, George Siemens, Dave Cormier, Rita Kop, and participants, which all relate to how openness would have impacted on the social/personal connections that would be made, the implications arising from the use of Open education resources (OER) or open resources would have influenced education and the associated connections (i.e. how people connect with artifacts (is it freely and openly, or people have to pay or subscribe to access the resources), and the connections with facilitators, other participants through tagging, curating etc.

    Personal Learning – This relates back to how individuals learn in PLENK. At this stage of the course, many participants still thought that they might have managed their learning to certain extent, through the use of PLE (as tools, platforms of learning, and certain connections with facilitators, some other participants, and artifacts through the LMS (forums), Daily, Elluminate, and Twitter etc. However, it seems that many participants are still not yet able to fully connect with others as “clusters”, or groups as yet, as reported by various bloggers and forum posters. May be this is a plateau period of interaction, where participants are spending more time in reflecting on what they have learnt so far (as shared by Jenny here), and are more hesitant in further connections unless they perceive further values added to their learning with posting in forums, in particular. There is also a plausible explanation: some participants who have learnt about critical thinking would like to practise the critical thinking as a personal development process. As critical thinkers, such participants would likely withhold judgment, think more critically by analysing information, evaluating evidences and making judgment more cautiously, before expressing their views or comments in forums or blogs. Such reflective thinking also mean a higher level of personal learning with cognitions and thus may be a demonstration of critical literacy as espoused by Stephen Downes (refer to elements of critical literacy: syntax, semantics, pragmatics, context, change and cognition). George also highlights the importance of critical literacies here in learning through PLENK. Further evidences are required from this research to substantiate such claims on personal learning and critical literacies capacity development.

    Power and influence: The power and influence exercised by the facilitators and participants has been nuanced, but have surfaced in the forum postings in numerous settings, where certain opinions or beliefs have been challenged by both facilitators and participants in exchange, and in blog postings, here facilitators tried to convince participants the primacy of connections and importance of managing chaos, filtering or selection of information, curating of information, and the tolerance needed in face of chaos, complexity and abundance of information. There have been warm welcome of such instructions and influence by some participants, as evidenced in the Elluminate and blog postings.

    Initial analysis by George did show the trend of postings and the emergent nature of the course, in terms of course design, delivery and connections. Refer to this Siemens, G. Learning in Open Courses

    http://www.slideshare.net/gsiemens/teaching-learning-in-open-courses

    and Downes on the course review

    Downes, S. A world to change

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/stephen-downes/a-world-to-change_b_762738.html

    More learning analytics and further research findings are required to substantiate such claims.

  5. Pingback: #PLENK2010 On the Research into the Design and Delivery of MOOC (III) | Suifaijohnmak's Weblog

  6. Pingback: #Change11 #CCK12 What could we learn from MOOC? A reflection | Learner Weblog

  7. Pingback: Cognitive Strategies and Affective dimensions in MOOCs | Learner Weblog

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