Week 9

  1. What have you learned this week about choosing technology for online learning?

Last week we have planned our curriculum. This is 9th week and this week we chose technology for our flipped classroom. In 4th week we prototyped flipped classroom and we chose technology for our e-platform. Why we are revising this phenomenon. We are in the final stage of launching of our flipped classroom. The more time we spend on planning, the less mistakes we actually make. We have finalized our curriculum and know we are in a better position to launch our online system in a flipped classroom. It is the learners and teachers as human actors who ultimately determine the formative effects of engaging with technologies, but technologies can shape the potential for this to happen. (Pachler et al (2009), scoping a vision for formative assessment)”

“What technology offers is:

Technology-enhanced assessment and feedback refers to practices that provide some, or all, of the following benefits:

  • Greater variety and authenticity in the design of assessments.
  • Improved learner engagement, for example through interactive formative assessments with adaptive feedback.
  • Choice in the timing and location of assessments.
  • Capture of wider skills and attributes not easily assessed by other means, for example through simulations, e-portfolios and interactive games.
  • Efficient submission, marking, moderation and data storage processes.
  • Consistent, accurate results with opportunities to combine human and computer marking.
  • Immediate feedback.
  • Increased opportunities for learners to act on feedback, for example by reflection in e-portfolios.
  • Innovative approaches based around use of creative media and online peer and self-assessment.
  • Accurate, timely and accessible evidence on the effectiveness of curriculum design and delivery”.

(Effective Assessment in a Digital Age: A guide to technology-enhanced assessment and feedback)

  1. Where and how did you learn this, during your work for the course this week? What particular activities or prompts helped you?

As humans are progressing our lives are becoming easy and so is our teaching methods. Each researcher is standing on the shoulder of the predecessor to give novel approaches in learning/blended e- learning. This week we have input of our curriculum vision. Our choice of virtual learning environment should reflect our curriculum aspiration. Curriculum should at least keep its goal for one complete course because it will further give us data about our pros and cons.  Don’t ask what the technology can do for you, rather what the pedagogy needs. (Gilly Salmon, Professor of e-Learning and Learning Technologies, University of Leicester”).

Technology is a tool as artificial intelligence is not smart enough to teach itself. It is student teacher which are the part of learning process. Technology has shortened distances and the world is a global village and we can access knowledge through anywhere. Technology doesn’t solve everything but it enables me to do
something about it. (Mark Russell, Deputy Director, Blended Learning Unit, University of Hertfordshire”).

  1. From what you have learned this week, how has your understanding of choosing technology for online learning changed? How has it stayed the same, or your existing understanding and perspectives about this been reinforced and confirmed?

The cons about technology choice is: 

  • Expensive
  • Difficult to obtain
  • Complicated to use
  • Doesn’t link with existing systems
  • Too many functions or too much information
  • Risk of systems breaking down
  • Increased risk where the tools become mission critical
  • Functionality which does not obviously map to existing practice

The pros of technology is:

  • Easy to use
  • Cheap
  • Recommended or used by peers
  • Support provided in the form of a workshop or one-to-one mentoring
  • Closely linked to user needs and requirements
  • Obvious benefits
  • Provides a solution to a problem
  • Integrates with existing tools and resources
  • Interesting or fun
  • Support by a vendor
  • Open source

 Littlejohn (2004)

Now comes there comes the choice of selecting the best possible variable in light of our curriculum. The choice can be made by opting SWOT analysis. It stands for strength, Weakness, Opportunities and threats. We have to build our flipped classroom foundation on our strengths. Our strength should not be overlooked. We should not deploy the online system in which we don’t have the strength to properly teach the students or students don’t follow our system. So, system should be made on strength in the meanwhile develop proficiency in weakness for future learning. Always system should be future oriented so that it can accommodate the students. The threats of technology depletion should be catered and contingency planning should be done to avoid being outdated in the industry. “One common conjecture is that learning a complex body of knowledge effectively requires a community of learners (Bransford, Brown and Cocking 1999; Riel and Polin 2004; Schwen and Hara 2004; Vrasidas and Glass 2004) and that online technologies can be used to expand and support such communities. Another conjecture is that asynchronous discourse is inherently self-reflective and therefore more conducive to deep learning than is synchronous discourse (Harlen and Doubler 2004; Hiltz and Goldman 2005; Jaffee et al. 2006)”.

It is seen that technology helps in teaching and it is said that a picture is worth thousand words and a video is moving pictures that’s why teaching concepts of science subjects and even non science subjects can take benefit from technology. “Some studies found students who used multimedia tools in teaching have higher-level thinking skills than in comparison with traditional teaching methods (Chanukah et al., 2007)”.

  1. What has this suggested regarding your current strengths in your practice that could help you design an online curriculum?

Our strength is collaboration of the system. The integration of system is and should be our strength. It will not only in the design of curriculum but also help in execution of curriculum which is our real aim. “Collaborative knowledge construction environments enable all members of a class or learning group… to contribute their interpretation. It is important for advance knowledge acquisition that learners realize that there exist multiple interpretations for every event or object. Those interpretations may be dissonant or consonant, but they reflect the natural complexity that defines most advanced knowledge domains. Collaborative environments enable learners to identify and reconcile those multiple perspectives in order to solve problems (Jonassen et al, 1993, p. 240)”.

We have to be proactive and smart as e-learning is for getting us up-to-date about current requirement which is effectiveness and efficiency. My spark for this resource is drawn from Steven Covey’s seven habits of effective people and principle-centred leadership ideas (Covey, 2004).”The trend of e-learning is increasing day by day and we have to update ourselves for the influx of students due to environment issues and work related issues. Of all students enrolled in higher education in 2013, 32 percent took at least one online course (Allen & Seaman, 2013)”.

  1. What has this suggested regarding what you might do to further develop with this in the future? How might you do that (specifically)?

The choice of online learning environment requires a guerrilla strategy and constant update. Long-term contracts with leading software houses with lien of continuous update can make this platform a stable option. Otherwise, continuous changes of software developers can make unrequired changes which will detriment curriculum enforcement. There is a range of helpful instructional literature on the topic of online design for disability considerations (Coombs, 2010), and a multitude of technology services available that can support designing learning for special education needs. Resources such as iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch Apps for (Special) Education (Sailers, 2009) or Apps for Special Education (Spectronics, 2012)”

There are many people who see blended degree with suspicion, but  the quality products from this blended e-learning system can make them realize that this knowledge as an effective one in this era of technology. Although these initiatives are booming exponentially, the debate remains about whether corporate-based online-education initiatives have the credentials to grant credits and degrees to individual learners who have completed their online courses (Schroeder, 2012)”.

  1. What has challenged or surprised you, during your learning this week?

This process should benefit students and fulfill market needs, only in this way this technology has future in general. “Most instructors new to online teaching begin with little to no training or preparation specific to this deliver mode (Crawford-Ferre & Wiest, 2012, p. 13).”

Qualified teachers of blended e-learning should teach these courses. “Studies, however, have found that most online faulty have not received adequate training and support from their institutions (e.g. Crawford-Ferre & Wiest, 2012; Gabriel & Kaufield, 2008)”

  1. To what extent do you think you have achieved each of the learning Outcomes for this Week 9? If you think there is room for you to achieve these more fully, what could you do to help yourself achieve that?

Without any flattery, the outcome of this week is more than my imagination. Every week I think that I have learnt more than the previous week and this is the success is this system of learning. The whole concept in this learning is a success. Social presence is a key component in online education and has a direct impact in many ways on the development of a learning community and interaction in online environments (Kehrward, 2008; Swan, Garrison, & Richardson, 2009)”.

A teacher has to be smart enough to indulge all the students in this system to participate and give input about personal and peers approach towards learning. “A group of friends could dominate online discussion, thus intimidating others who were newcomers (Ke, 2010, p. 817).”