E-learning

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Course code: IFI7139 xxxxx

Facilitator: Terje Väljataga (Tallinn University)

Credit points: 5 ECTS

Time: 1.03. - 16.05. 2010

If you would like to participate in this course, add yourself here Participants.

Everyone is free to enroll and participate, but official credits are only available via Tallinn University. Contact the course facilitator for more information.


Objectives[edit]

The main objective of the course is to familiarize students with the domain of e-learning through individual and group work focusing on the design of an e-learning course. Furthermore, the course aims at introducing social media tools and services for designing an e-learning course; fostering competencies in the area of distance collaboration and self-reflection; and practicing English.

Course outline[edit]

Through a series of practical hands-on activities and reflective discussions in study groups, students will gain insight to e-learning concepts, issues, technologies and methods that are introduced with real-life examples and with a support of the distributed learning environment. Special attention will be given to knowledge management and social-constructivist methods of computer-supported collaborative learning and networking. Students will apply self-directed learning principles using conversational learning contracts.

Learning outcomes[edit]

Students will:

  • become familiar with key concepts, various theories and approaches for designing an e-learning course,
  • develop practical skills for setting up, implementing and evaluating the use of distributed social software services and tools,
  • design a prototype of an e-learning course,
  • develop and advance competences in self-directing learning projects, collaborating in distance and communicating in English.

Course tools and services[edit]

General information about the course (schedule, tasks, material) can be found here, in eLearning course wiki.

Everybody in this course is required to have a personal Weblog. If you want to use your Weblog from previous times, please either add IFI7139 tag to each of your posts related to this course or publish them in one category. If you don't have a personal Weblog you can use one of the existing services for creating a Weblog:

Wordpress

Bloglines

Blogger

Edublogs

Facilitator's Weblog: Terje Väljataga Here you can find extra information and news about the course as well as facilitator's reflections and thoughts.

If you encounter problems of creating a personal Weblog don't hesitate to contact the course facilitator.

Course related links and literature will be presented here, in course Wiki, but they also can be found in Connotea. If you plan to use any social bookmarking tool and want to share your bookmarks with the course participants distinguish your bookmarks with the tag IFI7139.

Course outline[edit]

WEEK 1: INTRODUCTION TO E-LEARNING AND COURSE DESIGN[edit]

1.03 - 7.03

Goals: Getting an overview of the course schedule, tools and services as well as tasks; assembling a personal landscape of tools and services to participate in the course; getting to know about different e-learning trends and their influence on course design principles.

Tasks:

  1. Familiarize yourself with the course schedule, materials, assessment criteria, etc. on the course page in Wikiversity.
  2. Create a personal Weblog and write down an introduction about yourself. It is recommended that your introduction includes your name, university, your interests, your previous experiences with online learning and social media tools and services (weblog, wiki, social bookmarking tools, chat, etc.), your expectations. However, creative introductions are more than welcome.
  3. Choose one of the videoconferencing time in Doodle. In order to indicate your preferred time for videoconferencing, make a tick in one of the options provided, write down your name and click "save". The videoconference is going to be supported by a Flashmeeting tool.
  4. Look at the facilitator's Weblog to get more information of how to use a Flashmeeting tool and other emerging issues.


Reading and reflection:

  1. Make a selection of reading material for the first week.
  2. Reflect on your learning experiences in your personal Weblog following the reflection template:

a. Reflect and summarize on course readings in your personal Weblog: What are the trends in e-learning and how do they influence online course design?

b. What was the most important thing that you learned this week? What kind of questions/ideas/experiences this week’s activities raised for you?

c. Was there something you didn’t quite understand and want to know more about?

Material:

New Web 2.0 spaces for e-learning

Foundations of educational theory for online learning

Toward a theory of online learning

E-learning trends

WEEK 2: INTRODUCTION TO PERSONAL LEARNING CONTRACT AND SELF-REFLECTION[edit]

8.03 - 14.03

Goals: Getting to know, how learning contracts and self-reflection can enhance individual learning; initiating one's own learning contract; getting to know other participants in this course; forming study groups.

Tasks:

  1. If you haven't added yourself on E-learning/Participants page, please do so. Contact with the group members and get to know them. This group continues working together during the whole course.
  2. Write down your personal learning contract in your personal Weblog according to the learning contract template:

Objectives: What are my objectives in this course?

Resources: What resources will I need? Resources can be people, different artifacts, materials, software tools.

Strategies: How will I do it? What is my strategy to achieve my objectives? What is the order of my actions? How will I use different resources in my actions?

Evaluation criteria: How do I know that I was successful? Develop measurable criteria to evaluate your activities in respect to your objectives.

Self-reflection: Did I achieve my objectives? Use the criteria what you developed to assess how well you worked. Reflect, what worked and what did not?


Reading and reflection:

  1. Make a selection of reading material for the second week.
  2. Reflect on your learning experiences in your personal Weblog following the reflection template:

a. What was the most important thing you learned this week? What kind of questions/ideas/experiences this week’s activities raised for you?

b. Was there something you didn’t quite understand and want to know more about it?

Material:

What is self-directed learning in Web 2.0 spaces?

File:Contract.pdf

WEEK 3: THE ROLE OF GROUPWORK, COMMUNITIES; AND COLLABORATION TOOLS FOR PREPARING AN ONLINE COURSE[edit]

15.03 - 21.03

Goals: Assembling the group environment of social media tools and services for regulating group work; reflecting on how collaborative tools can support the distant group in preparing an e-learning course.

Tasks:

  1. Create a group environment for your study group. You can choose whatever tools and services and create accounts if needed. This environment is for regulating your group tasks within your group. It can be changed and completed during the whole groupwork.

You may want to have a look at the following collection of collaboration and communication tools for choosing some of them in order to support your collaboration within the groups.

Communication Gabbly, Meebo, Skype, Voicethread, Powergramo for saving Skype calls

Collaboration Vyew, google.docs Google docs, Gliffy, Writeboard, Wikispaces, PbWiki, MediaWiki, Scribblar

Networking Facebook, Orkut, Ning, Xing, Linkedin, Netlog

Concept mapping Wisemapping, Mind42, Bubbl, Mindmeister

Reading and reflection:

  1. Make a selection of reading material for the third week.
  2. Reflect on your learning experiences in your personal Weblog following the reflection template:

a. Which principles of groupwork, communities of practice and collaborative learning should a distributed group consider, when planning the design of an e-learning course?

b. What was the most important thing you learned this week? What kind of questions/ideas/experiences this week’s activities raised for you?

c. Was there something you didn’t quite understand and want to know more about it?

d. What is your evaluation of this week's groupwork? (What did go well and what did not? How did groupwork influence fulfilling your personal learning contract?)

e. Describe what has changed in your personal learning environment and in group environment?

Material:

Developing team skills and accomplishing team projects online

How to build a group environment from social tools?

WEEK 4: COURSE DESIGN PRINCIPLES - LEARNING FROM GOOD AND BAD EXAMPLES[edit]

22.03 - 28.03

Goals: Getting to know main components of course design using theoretical materials, as well as, learning from practical course examples; finding a common ground through team reflections on what are good online courses like.

Tasks:

  1. Find at least one good and one bad example case of course design and reflect your opinions of these courses in your personal Weblog. Visit the blogs of your groupmates, read their reflections of course designs and add your opinions as comments about these courses.
  2. As a group define what are the criteria for a good online course and reflect it in your group space (whatever you choose this to be), but make this group space visible to other groups by posting a link on E-learning/Participants page under your group.

Reading and reflection

  1. Make a selection of reading material for the fourth week.
  2. Reflect on your learning experiences in your personal Weblog following the reflection template:

a. Reflect and summarize on course readings in your personal Weblog: Explain, what are the components of course design!

b. What was the most important thing you learned this week? What kind of questions/ideas/experiences this week’s activities raised for you?

c. Was there something you didn’t quite understand and want to know more about it?

d. What is your evaluation of this week's groupwork? (What did go well and what did not? How did groupwork influence fulfilling your personal learning contract?)

e. Describe what has changed in your personal learning environment and in group environment?

Material:

  1. First principles of instruction File:5FirstPrinciples.PDF
  2. The use of traditional instructional systems design models for e-elearning File:The use of Traditional ISD for eLearning.pdf

Take a look at the course prototype examples from previous years:

Example 1: [1]

Example 2: [2]

Example 3: [3]

Example 4: [4]

Example 5: [5]

Example 6: [6]

Example 7: [7]

Example 8: [8]

Example 9: [9]

Example 10: [10]

WEEK 5: INDIVIDUAL REFLECTIVE WORK[edit]

29.03 - 4.04


Goals: Revising personal learning contracts; catching up with the course schedule

Tasks:

  1. Revise your personal learning contract if needed, considering what you have learned so far, what is going differently from your initial plans, how the environment has changed. Please start a new blog post for revision and keep the first version of the contract. Refer to the first version.
  2. Finish reading and the tasks for the previous weeks. Later submissions would not be taken into account.

WEEK 6: PREPARING OUR OWN COURSE PRINCIPLES[edit]

5.04 - 11.04

Goals: Preparing the first insight to the planned course, reflecting on the goals and objectives, design principles and process (roster) of the course; deciding how to share responsibilities on preparing the course as a group.

Tasks:

  1. In your group write down in your group work space the goals and objectives, design principles and process (roster) of your course prototype.

Reading and reflection:

  1. Make a selection of reading material for the sixth week.
  2. Reflect on your learning experiences in your personal Weblog following the reflection template:

a. Reflect and summarize on course readings in your personal Weblog: What do you consider as important elements in an e-learning course?

b. What was the most important thing you learned this week? What kind of questions/ideas/experiences this week’s activities raised for you?

c. Was there something you didn’t quite understand and want to know more about it?

d. What is your evaluation of this week's groupwork? (What did go well and what did not? How did groupwork influence fulfilling your personal learning contract?)

e. Describe what has changed in your personal learning environment and in group environment?

Material:

Learning metaphors and learning design principles

Instructional design models

WEEK 7: COURSE MATERIAL DEVELOPMENT[edit]

12.04 - 18.04

Goals: Developing the course material.

Tasks:

  1. As a group develop and design the course material. Think of what is the best way to present your chosen material to students in an online learning environment.

Reading and reflection:

  1. Reflect on your learning experiences in your personal Weblog following the reflection template:

a. What was the most important thing you learned this week? What kind of questions/ideas/experiences this week’s activities raised for you?

b. Was there something you didn’t quite understand and want to know more about it?

c. What is your evaluation of this week's groupwork? (What did go well and what did not? How did groupwork influence fulfilling your personal learning contract?)

d. Describe what has changed in your personal learning environment and in group environment?

WEEK 8: SETTING UP A LEARNING ENVIRONMENT[edit]

19.04 - 25.04

Goals: Investigating what the best learning environment for the course prototype is; assembling a learning environment for the course prototype. You can use a Weblog, Google.docs, Zoho, wiki or other possibilities for preparing the joint course draft.

Choice of Web2.0 tools and services

Choice of tools and services

Tasks

  1. Group members monitor and comment each others' reflections to come on a common ground what the best learning environment for your course prototype could be.
  2. As a group, set up a learning environment for your course prototype.

Reading and reflection

  1. Reflect on your learning experiences in your personal Weblog following the reflection template:

a. Explain, which type of learning environment is best suitable for your e-learning course prototype?

b. What was the most important thing you learned this week? What kind of questions/ideas/experiences this week’s activities raised for you?

c. Was there something you didn’t quite understand and want to know more about it?

d. What is your evaluation of this week's groupwork? (What did go well and what did not? How did groupwork influence fulfilling your personal learning contract?)

e. Describe what has changed in your personal learning environment and in group environment?

WEEK 9: COMPILING THE COURSE[edit]

26.04 - 2.05

Goals: Compiling the course.

Tasks:

  1. Compile the course by presenting your course prototype timeline, add the prepared learning material, tasks and assessment, etc. to your course prototype learning environment.

Reading and reflection:

1. Reflect on your learning experiences in your personal Weblog following the reflection template:

a. What was the most important thing you learned this week? What kind of questions/ideas/experiences this week’s activities raised for you?

b. Was there something you didn’t quite understand and want to know more about it?

c. What is your evaluation of this week's groupwork? (What did go well and what did not? How did groupwork influence fulfilling your personal learning contract?)

d. Describe what has changed in your personal learning environment and in group environment?

WEEK 10: FINAL COURSE PRESENTATION, GROUPWORK EVALUATION[edit]

3.05 - 9.05

Goals: Presenting your final course prototype; evaluating finalised course prototypes; assessing group-work.

Tasks:

  1. Present your final course prototype in your chosen group environment.
  2. As a group assess your group work and your course prototype. Leave your short comments about the group work and the grade for your groupwork in your course prototype environment.

Reading and reflection:

1. Reflect on your learning experiences in your personal Weblog following the reflection template:

a. What was the most important thing you learned this week? What kind of questions/ideas/experiences this week’s activities raised for you?

b. Was there something you didn’t quite understand and want to know more about it?

c. What is your evaluation of this week's groupwork? (What did go well and what did not? How did groupwork influence fulfilling your personal learning contract?)

d. Describe what has changed in your personal learning environment and in group environment?

Material:

Formative evaluation

WEEK 11: INDIVIDUAL REFLECTION AND SELF-ASSESSMENT[edit]

10.05 - 16.05

Goals: Revising personal learning contracts and evaluating your activities during the course; catching up with the course schedule.

Tasks:

  1. Finish reading and tasks for the previous weeks. Later submissions would not be taken into account.
  2. Revise your personal learning contract if needed, considering what you have learned so far, what has gone differently from your last plans, how your personal learning environment has changed. Please start a new blog post for revision and keep the previous versions of the contract. Reflect on your study process and the course. Have you fulfilled your goals? What did work for you and what did not?
  3. Assess your work based on your learning contract. What is the grade you deserve? This grade will be taken into account for your final grade.

Graded assessment[edit]

A final grade will be based on the following assessment scheme:

  • 25 % of the grade is given by the facilitator for individual reading and reflecting activities in personal weblogs. To get the assessment, students must reflect upon the home-reading questions and personal experience questions.
  • 25 % of the grade is given by the group for its group work. This grade will be added to every group member of this group.
  • 25 % of the grade is given by a student himself/herself for his/her individual learning (according to the evaluation criteria developed by the student in his/her personal learning contract).
  • 25 % of the grade is given by the facilitator for a group product (prototypes of e-learning courses).


Facilitator's assessment, group-assessment and self-assessment is given based on the following criteria:

A - outstanding performance with only minor errors (90-100%)

B - above the average standard but with some errors (80-90%)

C - generally good work with a number of notable errors (70-80%)

D - fair but with significant shortcomings (60-70%)

E - passable performance, meeting the minimum criteria (50-60%)

F - considerable work required before the grade can be awarded (less than 50%)


Criteria for a group work (a course prototype):

1. Course objectives are outlined and measurable (observable)

2. Learning material is necessary and sufficient for supporting course objectives

3. Quality of learning materials (material is appropriate for the target audience)

4. Clarity of learning materials

5. Authenticity of learning materials

6. Using different media and the media is appropriate for the material presentation

7. Course design is interactive that allows learners to engage in some type of activity

8. Assignments support course objectives

9. Course environment supports execution of the assignments

10. Intuitiveness of using the learning environment

11. Monitoring and feedback options are presented

12. A learner can customise the learning environment

13. Evaluation criteria support course objectives

14. Evaluation criteria are clear and measurable from the course assignments

15. Objectives, content and assessment are aligned (parts of the course add up a complete picture)


An example of the process of getting a final grade.

1. individual reading and reflecting activities assessed by the facilitator

For example half of the reading and reflecting activities are done (50-60%), thus the grade would be E

2. groupwork evaluated by the group

For example the group agrees that their work is worth for A

3. self-assessment

For example a student thinks that he didn't manage to fulfill all the goals in a way he had planned and gives him a grade C (70-80%)

4. group product evaluated by the facilitator

For example a grade is B


Thus E+A+C+B=C Final grade for a student in this course would be C