As part of the MOOC we were asked to introduce ourselves, using these six questions. Here goes!
What is your intention for this workshop (why are you here)?
I’ve read a lot about MOOCs, but never participated in one. I felt this was a great opportunity, since I write about teaching online.
What issues do you think are important?
If you mean issues about teaching online, then I think there is a total misunderstanding of the opportunities to teach online. Coming from the academic world, most people believe they have to get a job from a university in order to teach online. This totally unrealistic.
If you mean issues about MOOCs, then I have a LOT of them, as I’m sure you will come to see during this course.
How will (you) contribute?
I write a lot. I share a lot. I am totally comfortable expressing opinions and ideas in public. So I hope that my role will be an active participant who both responds to and creates thought-provoking conversations about this process.
How would you like to see community develop among participants?
Online communities develop on their own. It’s a natural process for people to gravitate toward those who learn and think as they do. The only thing the organizing team has to do is provide the opportunities and tools and not get in the way with too much structure. While it’s “nice” to have the discussions on the University’s site, it’s also not convenient for most participants. I believe you would be better served with a group on LinkedIN or Facebook, where people are already participating in communities, instead of having to learn all new structures.
These types of workshops are new for most people. In fact about 90% don’t even participate. How will you overcome the fear of learning in the open and the frustration of using new technology, courageously work through any setbacks, and not give up?
I’ve been online since 1983. Learning in the open and technology challenges are not issues for me. I agree it takes practice and trust, but I am way beyond that personally. The only reason I will stop participating is if I find it is not a good ROI – return on investment of my time and effort.