Clyde Street

Learning, Teaching, Performing


Leave a comment

Drupal at the National Library

DSCF7619I am attending a Drupal training day today as part of a global initiative (there are twelve of these Drupal sessions in Australia today). The venue is the delightful National Library of Australia.

Drupal is a free software package (distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License) that makes it possible to organise, manage and publish  content on the web.

Justin Freeman of Agileware will facilitate two sessions:

  • The morning session introduces Drupal fundamentals.
  • The afternoon session provides hands-on experience of building a working Drupal website.

The training outcomes for the day are:

  • Understand Drupal basics and terminology.
  • Explore case studies where organisations have used Drupal.
  • Learn the benefits of building websites in Drupal.
  • Explore and use a real Drupal website.
  • Understand how Drupal can help your work.
  • Explore the building blocks of a Drupal website.

 


1 Comment

Ours is smaller than yours

I read Stephen Downes’ commentary on a Chronicle post on MOOCs.

In his post, Stephen observes:

For me, what’s revolutionary about MOOCs isn’t size, it’s openness – and openness isn’t just about free content, it’s about ownership over the process. And I don’t see anyone who is bored (yet) of talking about open education.

42rdv39p-1353975764I agree with Stephen about ownership. My experience of the small open online course (SOOC) Observing and Analysing Performance in Sport was that the idea of openness is realised when participants own the opportunities to share and learn.

Just as I was finishing Stephen’s commentary I received an alert to Michael Rose’s explainer about fractals in The Conversation.

In the explainer, Michael quotes Benoit Mandelbrot “Bottomless wonders spring from simple rules which are repeated without end“. It seems to me that open education has this potential. Like fractals I do think open courses are scalable.

As with our SOOC it seems entirely legitimate to laud smallness … if it empowers ownership through self-organisation.

Photo Credit

The Mandelbrot Set (from Wikimedia Commons)


Leave a comment

Making Connections

8104702951_b3c9388a4f_b
I am mindful of the saying “when you have a hammer everything looks like a nail”,  but …

… there are some excellent discussions going on about open learning at the moment. Even with my limited number of feeds, I have noticed a surge in discussion and sharing of practice.

This morning, I viewed Stephen Downes’ presentation The Virtual Learning Organization. I was interested in Stephen’s discussion of cooperation (slide 22), self-organisation (slide 24) and learning as immersion (slide 27) in the context of open learning.

I found David Worlick’s recent post on Cultivating Your Personal Learning Network 2.0 a fascinating read. It gave me renewed enthusiasm to engage with Apple’s iBooks Author (iBA).

I had the same feeling about the announcement of the launch of the Sketchnote Handbook. I wondered if Mike Rohde’s insights might help me develop my aesthetics of sharing. Today was the first time I accessed Sketchnote Army (courtesy of a Paper.Li feed).

I liked Dave Cormier’s discussion of Open courses and content creation. I have spent some time thinking about multiplicity mentioned in the post:

When all participants create content, you have the potential for multiplicity. You can have a discussion from multiple viewpoints, from different contexts, from different life experiences. When different contextual beliefs are combined with difference in ability, race, gender, culture, race etc… a myriad of possibilities and viewpoints can come to the fore. When the course is opened up to the world, your chance for this increases manyfold.

I followed up on Deleuze and Guattari’s work as a result of Dave’s discussion.

I had an opportunity to read John Daniel’s Making Sense of MOOCs: Musings in a Maze of Myth, Paradox and Possibility too.

All of which took me back to Stephen’s presentation and the attraction of cMOOCs:

Slide 10

Photo Credit

Sketchnote of Tina Seelig’s TEDxStanford Talk on Creativity, (Stephen Collins)


2 Comments

An Invitation to SOOC 001: Observing and Analysing Performance in Sport

Introduction

The authors of an open online course, Current/Future State of Higher Education (CFHE12), observe in Week 2 of that course:

New technologies alter the relationship between learners and educators. The mediating role of higher education – selecting and brokering access to learning materials and ideas – is changing with the rise of the internet and constant connectivity.

Observing and Analysing Performance in Sport is seeking to explore these changes and to do so with a short, introductory course hosted on the OpenLearning platform. The course starts on 5 November and runs for five weeks.

Open Online Courses

There is lots of discussion about open online courses at the moment. In Australia, for example, The Conversation is running a series of articles this month. I enjoy reading Tony Hirst’s perspectives from the UK. Recently he observed:

Another of the things that I’ve been pondering is the role that “content” may or not play a role in this open course thing. Certainly, where participants are encouraged to discover and share resources, or where instructors seek to construct courses around “found resources”, an approach espoused by the OU’s new postgraduate strategy, it seems to me that there is an opportunity to contribute to the wider open learning idea by producing resources that can be “found”. For resources to be available as found resources, we need the following:

  1. Somebody needs to have already created them…
  2. They need to be discoverable by whoever is doing the finding
  3. They need to be appropriately licensed (if we have to go through a painful rights clearnance and rights payment model, the cost benefits of drawing on and freely reusing those resources are severely curtailed).

Tony points to the approaches taken in cMooCs and ds106. Like Tony I have found these two approaches to open learning liberating.

(cMOOC) offerings inspired by the likes of George Siemens, Stephen Downes, et al., where a looser curriculum based around a set of topics and initially suggested resources is used to bootstrap a set of loosely co-ordinated personal learning journeys: learners are encouraged to discover, share and create resources and feed them into the course network in a far more organic way than the didactic, rigidly structured approach taken by the xMOOC platforms. The cMOOC style also offers the possibility of breaking down subject disciplines through accepting shared resources contributed because they are relevant to the topic being explored, rather than because they are part of the canon for a particular discipline.

The course without boundaries approach of Jim Groom’s ds106, as recently aided and abetted by Alan Levine, also softens the edges of a traditionally offered course with its problem based syllabus and open assignment bank (particpants are encouraged to submit their own assignment ideas) and turns learning into something of a lifestyle choice…

I am keen to be part of that discussion and to do so through the practice of a small course committed to open sharing and flourishing. I take Jim Groom’s point about open architecture very seriously:

We have to broadly experiment with and come to terms with how we design an open architecture that provides for a coherent personal digital archive.

I have enjoyed reading about A Domain of One’s Own at the University of Mary Washington:

A Domain of One’s Own is a new pilot project from the University of Mary Washington and a collaborative effort between the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies and the Office of Information Technology Services. This pilot will give 400 students and faculty their own domain name and web space to install a portfolio of work or map to existing systems. Content from coursework in the pilot will be aggregated here, as well as an exploration of aggregating the work students are creating directly to umw.edu. We believe this pilot project will give students the flexibility to build out their “e-portfolio” using a variety of software and approaches in a space that gives them the power to easily migrate and transport that data when they graduate. We’re excited about the possibilities and will continue to update everyone on the project right here at umwdomains.com as the pilot unfolds.

John Udell has written about this too and the importance of cloud opportunities “where students could, and would, take care of their own services, relying on standards to interoperate with the institutions they’d serially associate with during their careers and lives”.

Leigh Blackall makes some important points about principles too in regard to: connected and constructed learning, open access, free content reuse, international, cross cultural and collaborative engagement, transparent processes and open documentation, peer to peer assessment and acknowledgement of people breaking conceptual ground in the lobbying and development of open and networked practice. Leigh notes Teemu Leinonen’s 2008 approach in Composing free and open online educational resources:

The course readings and the assignments in this course will familiarize participants with the main concepts related to open education resources and to the historical and philosophical ideas behind them. The participants will also do their own projects where they will learn to create and participate in projects producing free and open educational resources.

I admire Stephen Downes’ work immensely. Last week Stephen shared a presentation on the Connective Learning Environment. In that presentation he gave an insight into the development of CCK08 and subsequent open online courses. Stephen links to Dave Cormier’s video What is a MOOC?

Invitation

I hope that the background information I have shared here gives a feel for the epistemological foundations for Observing and Analysing Performance in Sport.

This post is an invitation to participate in the course and to do so with the voluntary assumption of risk that it will be a messy experience. With OpenLearning’s help I think we will be able to adapt to an emerging course.

I have cleared my diary for November to optimise my opportunity to be part of the course. We are still writing the content for the course but I sense that the range of contributors will make it a very distinctive experience.

Photo Credits

Orchestra

Riffing


Leave a comment

Open Opportunities: Scaling Cooperation

We have had two extremely windy days in New South Wales.

On Wednesday there was a state-wide total fire ban.

This morning the winds of the Internet brought me a number of alerts that had me thinking about other kinds of fires … Plutarch‘s kindling kind.

Stephen Downes started me on my journey with two posts:

Those two posts led me to:

Slide 14 of George’s 41 slides is:

These posts in turn took me to:

 

Just when I was coming up for air I received alerts to:

 

I followed up on Harold Jarche and Jane Hart’s PKM Workshop and liked their description of their approach:

Our online social workshops are not traditional, formal online courses, take a look here at how they run:

  • Our workshops are designed to give just enough structure, without constraining personal and social learning.
  • We curate what we think are the essential resources on a topic and also provide additional links and resources for those who are interested.
  • We encourage all discussions to be done in the private workshop group area, so that people can learn from each other.
  • We try to find ways to help each person as issues arise in the conversations. Without these conversations, we would not be able to help in an informed way.
  • For those attending this workshop, the more they give, the more they will get.

 

I have assembled these links here as an ongoing consideration of issues to be addressed in the formulation of a SOOC that will be available in November on the OpenLearning platform.

As I was about to post this I received an alert to two posts by Paul Montgomery for the Kinetic-Athlete blog:

 

Paul’s insights were another boost to my interest in open sharing and his posts will make a great resource for the SOOC. Which takes me neatly back to Slide 14  ” Learners expected to create, grow, expand domain and share personal sensemaking through artifact-creation”.

 

Photo Credits

It was a windy day

Windy day ahead

A windy day indeed


1 Comment

Wikinews and Wikipedia at the London Paralympics

Laura Hale and friends have been very busy at the Paralympic Games with their Wikinews reporting.

The amount of Wikinews and Wikipedia material available to refer to the Games is staggering. All my posts in The Conversation use Wikipedia links.

This is Jacqueline Freney’s profile in recent days:

and for Matt Cowdrey:

A group of dedicated Wikipedians is updating the profiles of athletes each day and including news of medal winners. The time difference in Australia from London means that all profiles are updated at 9 a.m. AEST.

Postscript

A day after posting this I received an update from Laura Hale:

Complete list of Wikinews articles to date featuring original reporting at London 2012 Paralympics

This is the complete published list to date.  (We have about six articles awaiting review.)  Between them, I think over 75 countries are mentioned.  In some cases, a few countries have new articles that still have not had ten articles published about them since 2007.

They represent a wide swathe of Paralympic sports including athletics, track cycling, wheelchair basketball, shooting, goalball, judo, boccia, table tennis, equestrian, athletics, rowing, 5-a-side football, and 7-a-side football. (We have an article about wheelchair fencing awaiting review.) We have had four interviews published.  (We have one more awaiting review.)  We have covered the press angle, written about some of the behind the scenes things like the gym and equipment repair, and covered two press conference.  One article was picked up by a newspaper in Sierra Leone and printed in paper.

We have about five more days left, but really, really happy with what we havve had so far. A big round of thanks are heartily deserved to everyone who helped make this happen at the APC and Wikinews and Wikimedia Australia. 🙂  This work comes on top of making sure an article exists about every 2012 Australian Paralympian, taking at least 35 of those to the front page of Wikipedia, getting profile pictures donated by the APC for every 2012 Australian Paralympian for use on Wikipedia and Wikinews, creating articles that better explain Paralympic classification with that preparation work being done before the start of the Games.

http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Greg_Smith_named_as_Australia’s_2012_Paralympic_Games_flag-bearer
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/1964_Australian_Paralympic_medalist_Trevor_French_dies
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Papua_New_Guinea_represented_by_two_Paralympians_in_London
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Sierra_Leone_sends_lone_athlete_for_the_nation’s_second_ever_Paralympic_Games
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/2012_Paralympic_Village_occupied_by_competitors_as_nations_ready_for_the_Games
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Algerian_2012_Paralympic_coaches_express_optimism
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Athletes_prepare_for_2012_Summer_Paralympics_at_the_Paralympic_Fitness_Centre
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Australians_make_Paralympic_Village_uniquely_their_own
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/International_Paralympic_Committee_holds_first_press_conference
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/IPC_criticizes_US_Paralympic_coverage
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/2012_makes_five_Paralympic_Games_for_Côte_d’Ivoire
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Vanuatu_sends_lone_Paralympian_to_London
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Paralympic_cyclists_test_out_the_London_Velodrome
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Micronesia_left_behind_by_the_Paralympic_movement
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Preparedness_for_2012_Paralympic_Games_differs_between_National_Paralympic_Committees
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Turkey_men’s_wheelchair_basketball_team_practices_ahead_of_2012_Summer_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Canadians_express_optimism_regarding_medal_potential_at_2012_Summer_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Australian_shooters_start_their_2012_Paralympic_campaign
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Australia_wins_its_first_medal_of_the_Paralympics_with_shooting_bronze
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Wikinews_interviews_Oceania_Paralympic_Committee_President_Paul_Bird
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Kate_Lundy_watches_Australian_women_qualify_for_the_women’s_R2-10m_air_rifle_final
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Australia_and_South_Africa_men’s_national_wheelchair_basketball_teams_play_in_their_2012_Paralympics_opener
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Brazil_women’s_national_wheelchair_basketball_team_loses_first_game_in_its_2012_Paralympic_campaign
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/South_Korean_men’s_national_goalball_team_defeats_Algeria_4-3
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Great_Britain’s_Powell_loses_to_Germany’s_Matthias_Krieger_in_judo_event_at_2012_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Day_two_of_Paralympic_judo_underway_in_London
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Judo_round_of_sixteen_underway_at_London_2012_Summer_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/United_States’s_Cynthia_Paige_Simon_loses_to_Spain_in_women’s_57kg_judo_quarter_finals
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Ukraine_beats_Great_Britain_women’s_sitting_volleyball_in_straight_sets_at_2012_Summer_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Frank_Ponta_inducted_into_the_Paralympic_Hall_of_Fame
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Kate_Lundy_watches_Australian_women_qualify_for_the_women’s_R2-10m_air_rifle_final
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Gliders_win_against_Brazil_in_their_2012_Paralympic_opening_match
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Defending_Paralympic_table_tennis_gold_medalist_Ying_Zhou_defeats_Slovene_Andreja_Dolinar_in_group_play
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Paralympic_table_tennis_silver_medalist_Piotr_Grudzien_beats_Poland’s_Richard_Csejtey
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/China_leads_medal_race_after_day_two_of_competition_at_London_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Wikinews_tours_London_Paralympic_Village_wheelchair_repair_workshop
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Grace_Bowman_withdraws_from_2012_Paralympic_Dressage_Individual_Championship_Test_-_Grade_II_event
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Canada_women’s_national_wheelchair_basketball_team_gets_its_first_win_of_London_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Australian_Jayme_Paris_wins_bronze_in_the_London_Paralympics_Women’s_Individual_C1-2-3_500m_Time_Trial
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/IPC_inducts_new_members_into_its_Hall_of_Fame
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Wikinews_interviews_winner_of_55_Paralympic_medals,_Trischa_Zorn
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Medals_given_out_at_final_day_of_rowing_at_London_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Fifteen_medals_awarded_on_London_Paralympics_fourth_night_of_track_and_field
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Gliders_suffer_first_loss_in_London_Paralympics_against_Canada
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Slovenia_goes_down_to_China_in_their_final_sitting_volleyball_game_in_pool_play_at_London_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Australia_women’s_national_goalball_team_loses_0-3_to_United_States_in_pool_play_in_London
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Argentina_loses_to_Iran_at_7-a-side_football_in_pool_play_at_the_London_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Wikinews_interviews_Tyan_Taylor,_Australian_goalball_player
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Slovakia’s_Alena_Kanova_defeats_Sara_Head,_taking_bronze_in_class_3_table_tennis
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Brazil_defeats_China_in_5-a-side_football_in_group_play_at_London_Paralympics
http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Wikinews_interviews_Katie_Hill,_Australian_Paralympic_wheelchair_basketball_medallist


2 Comments

A Souq-Like SOOC

There has been a lot of discussion recently about Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).

I am grateful to Stephen Downes’ OLDaily and George Siemens for regular updates about MOOC opportunities and debate.

I was fortunate to be a participant in the Connectivism and Connective Knowledge (CCK08) open online course. George Siemens writes of this:

In 2008, Stephen Downes and I offered an open online course Connectivism and Connective Knowledge (CCK08).  As our registration numbers increased to about 2300 students, Dave Cormier and Bryan Alexander dubbed the course offering a “massive open online course” or MOOC. The term has stuck and both Dave and Bryan will eventually be inducted into the edtech hall of fame for great word inventage. Since that first course, Stephen, Dave, and I have offered a whack of different courses: CCK09, CCK11, CCK12, Future of Education, PLENK, LAK11, LAK12, Change11, Critical Literacies, and so on. All told, we are likely approaching about 20,000 registrants for our MOOCs (there is overlap from different courses, so the unique registrants would be less).

My thinking about learning was transformed by CCK08 and has been developed by peripheral participation in a number of the other MOOCs George mentions.

I have been contemplating a modest alternative to the MOOC … a SOOC (a Small Open Online Course). I do think the principles of MOOCs are scalable.

I like the idea of a SOOC that has characteristics of its like-sounding souq. According to Wikipedia a souq is:

an open-air marketplace. Historically, souqs were held outside of cities in the location where a caravan loaded with goods would stop and merchants would display their goods for sale. Souqs were held when there was a caravan or more available. At that time, souqs were more than just a market to buy and sell goods; they were also major festivals and many cultural and social activities took place in them.

The SOOC I have in mind is a mother SOOC that will lead to daughter and granddaughter SOOCs. I am planning a five topic SOOC in The Observation and Analysis of Performance in Sport. One of the challenges for me is how to support non-linear personal learning. At present the SOOC’s five topics are:

  • Connecting and Sharing
  • Observing Performance
  • Visualising Data
  • Knowledge Discovery in Databases
  • Augmented Reality

 

I see the Connecting and Sharing topic as the key to supporting involvement in the SOOC. I am keen to persuade colleagues that sharing is the competitive edge in sport. Thereafter there will be a weekly progression through the topics but I realise that the caravans that bring ideas and energy may not coincide with this rhythm.

I am exploring too how this kind of approach resonates with open badges and formal recognition of learning through a qualification framework.

My concept of the SOOC is that it is a fractal of all other activity imbued with a commitment to open, self-paced intrinsically motivated learning.

I see each step in the geneaology of the SOOC triggered by the parent SOOC but increasingly open through generational change to including and crowdsourcing participants’ interests and knowledge. I hope that this approach establishes the connectivist aspirations of this form of sharing.

I am looking at ways to develop this SOOC with tools developed by Adam Brimo at OpenLearning.

Photo Credit

Life offers you tools …

Souq, Aleppo