01 Opus 20 Reflections of Module 1
Module 1 is coming to a close. The advice that we have been given throughout this module is “breathe.” This has been great advice. There is a lot of information packed into the first module and I am actively learning so much! What I am learning is a lot about who I am as a learner and how I self-regulate my own learning. Self-regulated learning is described as individuals taking control of their learning differences, bridging one’s mental ability to academic skill (Zimmerman, 2000). Through conversations with Mary and Ryan I was able to dig deeper into the question of, “who am I as a learner.” Mary enlightened me to 3 components of self-regulation in online learning. The first component is meta-cognition, the second is the students management and control of learning. Finally the third component(s) are the actual strategies used. Mary citesPintrich & De Groot (1990) for this information. The interaction of these components led me to reflection on how I incorporate these components into what I do as a learner. I relate my processes of organizing physical materials, writing things down on calendars and working along side of rubrics as components of my self-regulation. Ryan and I also engaged on conversations of self-regulated learners from the perspective of teachers. We discussed scaffolding in the context of “Zone of Proximal Development.” Ryan engaged me in a discussion about how we as learners help to teach and facilitate self-regulated learning. This information and research has seeded my mind with many thoughts and strategies to help germinate my course. So what has been planted?
The Readings and Media
Did You Know was a great wake up call on how our nation is utilizing technologies, and where each of us fit into the technology scheme. This piece made me reflect on my fluency in technology, and realize how much there is to learn. Technology will Kill demonstrates the shift that society has made in the past decade. This piece really makes you think about where we are headed and what will be replaced next. How will society shift? Social Media Revolution demonstrates how the world is shifting in it’s ability to connect and share information. This is cool stuff, and it is becoming a vital part of our shifting landscape. Technology is not just gadgets, but it is a collection of tools that influences all aspects of our lives. The possibilities are endless, especially in education.
It is interesting to look at the population of students who are taking online courses. this information informs the instructors of their audience. Over 40% of participants were working full-time and over 50% of the participants were full/part-time students. A majority (over 60%) of participants are females, and the age ranges vary. Some of the students are directly out of college (20-24) and the age range continues through 70! In addition while a majority of students are from the United States, there is varied representation from around the globe. What this implies about online classes is that they provide a rich and diverse population of students.
It is important to create an online community to shift the course from a teacher centered course to a student centered course. We want to facilitate our courses and guide content, but let the students dig deep to provide a rich and diverse experience that has meaning to the participants.
The one thing that I did not realize before entering online courses is how it would impact my writing. If you want to improve your writing skills, then take online courses. You need to establish a credible voice online that is articulate and unbiased. In addition it empowers you to communicate with participants and thoughtfully process and respond to opinions and research presented in the course. This helps to establish an intimate learning community. I feel that you really get to know your classmates and you share resources which enhances and enriches your course materials. While the added benefits of convenience and flexibility are important, the learning outcomes of online courses establishes habits and patterns important to the development of online learners.
The impact of social learning has connected us all. Technology has enhanced our ability to share information and have open dialogues about opinions, research and best practice in all fields. We have the ability to open the doors to our global community and foster a democratic society where all voices are heard, and validated. We learn to develop an online presence and connect with our community to grow and shift in our understanding of content and each other. Social media and technologies are shifting our participation as learners from formal students of institutions to informal students of life. Technologies can enhance or participation is societal issues and connecting us all to innovators and problem solvers to enhance and enrich our communities and society as a whole.
What I have walked away from this first module with is a better understanding of developing an online course. While it is important to know your content it is extremely important to understand the learner and to design and adjust your course accordingly. We want our students to walk away from our course with the knowledge, understanding and tools to transition the content of our course to the next level of understanding. In addition we as instructors should continue our learning process. By pulling in the diversity of our learners we should be able to explore variations on our content that are relevant to our learners and push us to unexplored places.
Brown, J. S., & Adler, R. P. (2008). Open education, the long tail, and learning 2.0. Educause review, 43(1), 16-20.
Pintrich, P. R., & De Groot, E. V. (1990). Motivational and self-regulated learning components of classroom academic performance. Journal of educational psychology, 82(1), 33-40
Zimmerman, B. J. (2002). Becoming a self-regulated learner: An overview.Theory into practice, 41(2), 64-70.