Topic 5: Course reflection

a-new-day-dawning

 

It is hard to believe our 10 week ONL journey is drawing to a close, feels like our group has accomplished loads in that short time. Through networking and collaborative learning, my colleagues in our PBL 5 group have contributed to the development of my teaching. My knowledge of online resources has been enhanced as I have gained increased confidence in my digital literacy skills. I hope to embrace more of a blended learning approach when teaching my law students going forward. I need to reflect on how best to achieve this. The timing of this course has been opportune for me with the imminent need to design several modules on a new qualification we have been working on at our institute. Being a student on this course has given me a refreshing lense to see what it is like to be a learner once again. I have truly realised the value of sharing responsibly and openness in learning, right from the initial guidance provided by our patient facilitator, to this week when we have reflected on the lessons learnt from this course. I also believe my creativity and explorative approach to trying new ways to connecting with my students has been piqued, and this excites me for the future.

I learnt that at the start of running an online course, the importance of establishing an effective communication plan with the group members is critical. Clear and instructions that are easily understandable to students starting a new course is also key to allowing them to feel confident in taking the first step in their learning journey.

I realise that just as I was a student on this ONL course, there is considerable value for students to become more active learners and thereby enhancing their lifelong learning skills, which they can take with them into the practice of law. After all, lawyers never stop learning and researching throughout their careers.

The more digitally experienced members of my group were fantastic in providing guidance initially, and sharing their skills. I have gained the opportunity to use a host of new digital tools including Flickr, Weebly, Kahoot, Padlet, Sway, Canva, Creative Commons, MOOC’s to name a few and realise the value of sharing the benefits of these tools with my fellow law teachers, and of course my students. This of course will be an interesting challenge for me in 2017 as the discipline of Law sometimes trails other fields in embracing change.

I also realise that learning in an online space still requires a recognition of the value of human emotion and feeling connected, as this inspires students to be more collaborative in their learning approach. Our group had experience on this when we came up with a script for a play for Topic 3, and had a lot of fun doing this.

I have learnt the importance of incorporating a blended learning approach to my future teaching as this is certainly the space into which the world is moving. Choosing the correct blend of learning activities is also key to the success of any course. Analysing your student group and their needs is vital before the designing of any course even occurs. The benefit of ADDIE and Professor Salmon’s 5 step models are takeaways from this course I would like to explore further at a more leisurely pace.

I will look back on my ONL162 journey with the fondest of memories and know that a path of deeper discovery of digital literacies still awaits me. Thank you for this wonderful opportunity of networked learning and to my fellow ONL162er’s for taking this journey with me.

References:

http://teachonline.ca/tools-trends/blended-learning-successful-design-delivery-and-student-engagement/making-sense-blended-learning-treasuring-older-tradition-or-finding-better-future

 

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6 thoughts on “Topic 5: Course reflection

  1. “takeaways from this course I would like to explore further at a more leisurely pace”
    I completely agree that the way forward is now to dig deeper into the topics and models that are the most interesting to ourselves as individual teachers and then try them (or other ones) in practical use. I just learned that KTH (one of the institutions involved in ONL) is launching an applied project course (but only for its own teachers) as an add-on, in which the students will work individually on their own courses and attempt designing them according to educational theories and practical considerations. It sounds like an excellent idea that might be of interest also to open learners: keep established contacts in a peer mentoring programme, start exploring the lessons learned in ONL162, share successes and pitfalls with each other to continue the peer learning.

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  2. I really like your final paragraph and I totally agree with ‘Choosing the correct blend of learning activities is also key to the success of any course. Analysing your student group and their needs is vital before the designing of any course even occurs.’ This is probably one of the most important lessons from the course (in my opinion) and where the future is heading. MOOCS only provide oportunities if they truly reach the people they are aimed for….

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  3. Hi Fiona, Many thanks for your interesting post. I really enjoy reading it. I agree with you that it is important to establish an effective communication plan between the group members. That will affect the group performance and production. I can say it is one of the key success factors in such online course. I also agree with you regarding the clear instruction for students at the beginning of the online course. That will make it easy for them and help them in building confidence through their learning journey in the course.

    Wish you all the best.

    Regards,
    Aziza

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  4. Thanks for sharing your experience with this course – I agree it’s hard to believe these ten weeks have passed already! You certainly have accomplished a lot in a short time! A comment on ‘the discipline of Law sometimes trails other fields in embracing change’ – well not always! At Lund University, the Law faculty is at the forefront of development when it comes to blended and online courses, look here: http://www.law.lu.se/#!IDED792F858EB72A79C1257F680049ECAE and here: https://www.facebook.com/eblmooc/ (and why not join😉?).

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